‘Interview with the Vampire’ has an undying legacy. Look inside its TV rebirth | CNN

‘Interview with the Vampire’ has an undying legacy. Look inside its TV rebirth | CNN
‘Interview with the Vampire’ has an undying legacy. Look inside its TV rebirth | CNN


It’s been almost half a century since “Interview with the Vampire” was printed, leaving its mark on widespread tradition. Penned by the late Anne Rice, the ebook turned the primary of the “Vampire Chronicles,” which embrace 12 follow-up novels. “Interview” itself was tailored right into a 1994 function movie starring Brad Pitt and Tom Cruise, whereas a unfastened “Queen of the Damned” adaptation hit theaters in 2002.

Now TV audiences can revisit “Interview with the Vampire” in a brand new collection on AMC Sunday night time. Beloved characters like Louis, Lestat and Claudia are again – albeit with some updates to their tales.

“We’ve these books which have actually been performed in everyone’s head 1,000,000 occasions, after which there’s this film that has grafted that onto one other technology of individuals,” mentioned government producer and author Rolin Jones, who acknowledged feeling a “push and pull of be reverential and just remember to’re not going to be boring for the people who already know these tales fairly effectively.”

Jones and manufacturing designer Mara LePere-Schloop spoke with CNN about reimagining “Interview with the Vampire” for tv and protecting the difference supernatural, sensual and luxurious, in keeping with the supply materials.

Bringing “Interview with the Vampire” to TV concerned constructing a “universe,” mentioned Jones, who stored the opposite “Vampire Chronicles” in thoughts whereas planning the whole lot from character particulars to the larger image. (Lestat, performed by Sam Reid, noticed some “rewriting” within the later books, as Jones noticed – beginning with a extra fleshed out backstory within the second novel, 1985’s “The Vampire Lestat.”)

Eric Bogosian plays an older, updated version of journalist Daniel Molloy.

The titular interview takes place within the current day; the 1994 movie, its screenplay written by Rice, additionally positioned the interview in then-modern occasions. Just like the novel, the brand new “Interview with the Vampire” is centered on Louis, who shares how he turned a vampire with Daniel Molloy, a personality first launched to readers as an unnamed younger reporter.

This Daniel, portrayed by Eric Bogosian, is an older seasoned journalist, however he’s basically “the identical man,” Jones mentioned. The present alludes to an earlier interview between Daniel and Louis from the ’70s – a callback to the novel.

The vampire Louis de Point du Lac (Jacob Anderson)  with his mortal sister Grace de Pointe du Lac (Kalyne Coleman) in

Louis, performed by Jacob Anderson, has some new origins. In earlier iterations, he was the proprietor of a plantation close to New Orleans within the late 1700s, which is when he met Lestat. The brand new Louis, nonetheless susceptible to durations of melancholy, guilt and self-loathing, is a Black brothel proprietor in early twentieth century New Orleans when his story begins.

The adjustments made had been partially the results of eager to give attention to a “time interval that was as thrilling aesthetically because the 18th century was with out digging right into a plantation story that no person actually needed to listen to now,” mentioned Jones. He famous that the character’s lineage can nonetheless be traced again to “plantation cash” and that his authentic occupation didn’t significantly come up as some extent of “self-reflection” within the novels.

One other important character replace includes Claudia – simply 5 years outdated when she was made right into a vampire within the novel, although she was portrayed by an 11-year-old Kirsten Dunst within the movie. AMC’s adaptation ages Claudia additional by making her 14 on the time of her transformation. This doesn’t make her any extra ready for the interior turmoil that units in.

Bailey Bass plays a slightly aged-up Claudia, now a 14-year-old when she's turned into a vampire.

As actor Bailey Bass mentioned in a featurette shared on the present’s Twitter account, this Claudia has to “cope with the feelings of a 19-year-old, then a 30-year-old, then 40-year-old, whereas nonetheless being caught on this 14-year-old younger physique.”

The choice to age Claudia was made partly because of considerations about filming sure scenes, particularly these with extra “grownup” connotations. Little one labor legal guidelines had been one other issue.

“If I needed to make Claudia on this present, I would like as many hours of taking pictures with the actor who performs that as potential,” Jones mentioned. “And if I put anyone that was youthful than 18 in there, I might have restricted hours.”

For LePere-Schloop, who learn Rice’s novels as a teen and credit them considerably with drawing her to New Orleans, her dwelling of 20 years, the adjustments within the TV collection usually are not antithetical to the creator’s work. After Rice died, her belongings had been donated to an archive at Tulane College in New Orleans, mentioned LePere-Schloop, who met with the archivist whereas the collection was filming.

“A few of the issues she was discovering was that Anne was writing quick tales and different interpretations of the ‘Chronicles’ the place Louis was a lady, or there are different fluidity issues occurring,” she mentioned. “Even inside Anne’s personal writing, there’s a historical past of form of taking part in with time, place and individual.”

The collection was filmed in New Orleans, as soon as Rice’s longtime dwelling and an integral a part of “Interview with the Vampire.” Immersing the viewer within the up to date setting required a very good quantity of analysis.

“We’re now speaking a few interval of New Orleans that has been talked about so much, however isn’t very effectively documented in photographs or hasn’t been captured in movie and tv, and that’s the interval of Storyville (the red-light district),” LePere-Schloop mentioned. “Culturally, it’s had such an affect on the town.”

As a New Orleans resident, she knew that “when a spot is completed improper, you hear it on the town.” So she relied on varied sources, together with the experience of native historian Richard Campanella.

“He labored with us to seize issues that he knew from oral histories and anecdotal tales that he had documented by means of time of parts of Storyville,” LePere-Schloop mentioned.

The production filmed in New Orleans, using a mix of real-life locations and newly built sets to immerse viewers in the vampires' world.

The manufacturing integrated New Orleans’ very actual historical past, in addition to key areas throughout the metropolis, along with constructing new units – just like the one for Storyville – to carry viewers into this model of Louis’ and Lestat’s world.

“Anne used the town as analysis and reference,” LePere-Schloop mentioned. “We had been fortunate sufficient to have the ability to movie on the precise home that Anne wrote Lestat’s townhouse to be within the novels. Her inspiration for that home is a residing museum and we acquired to make use of that as the outside home.”

Creating the within of the home, albeit on a stage, was additionally nice enjoyable, she mentioned, noting that the unique supply of inspiration has “actually unbelievable design particulars” like a skylight (which was labored into the script) and crown molding.

Completely different design aesthetics had been used to point out the passage of time whereas the vampires stay unchanged. The units additionally served as a mirrored image of the characters, from the artwork Lestat brings over to New Orleans from Europe to the depressed state the vampires’ dwelling falls into when issues go awry.

“It’s an emotional panorama as a lot as a bodily one,” Jones mentioned.

Production designer Mara LePere-Schloop aimed to give AMC's adaptation of

LePere-Schloop needed to keep away from depicting a cliché New Orleans onscreen – and equally, she needed to keep away from vampire clichés, opting towards portray the whole lot “bordello pink” or placing Gothic arches in every single place. However for all of the historic particulars adopted by the behind-the-scenes staff, there are touches (together with added saturation throughout the closing coloring course of, Jones mentioned) that really feel much less pure.

Whereas pondering up the palette for the present, LePere-Schloop turned to a ebook from her childhood – “The Rainbow Goblins” – which contained “lovely, oversaturated” illustrations and helped her land on a extra dynamic backdrop. The world Louis and Lestat occupy is “sexier” and “vivacious,” she mentioned, in comparison with early depictions of vampires in movie, which tended to be understated and “crumbling.”

Even with some adjustments to the unique storylines, the “Interview with the Vampire” staff didn’t ignore the supply materials – rereading and “seeing what was within the crevices and the cracks” helped them make the present, Jones mentioned.

There are refined references to characters from later novels and even a fast shoutout to Rice’s Mayfair witches (additionally the topic of an upcoming AMC collection). Characters that didn’t seem within the movie do seem right here. And – maybe crucial element for the diehard followers – Lestat and Louis are lovers, in a transfer that takes the famed subtext of Rice’s earlier vampire novels and easily turns it into textual content.

Lestat (Sam Reid) and Louis (Jacob Anderson) have a blatantly romantic, albeit toxic, relationship in this iteration of

What “Interview with the Vampire” hinted at within the ’70s was progressive for its time, Jones mentioned, including that by the “later books, it’s as if there was this nice romance that was by no means actually written, however all of us form of agree it occurred.”

Whereas Jones didn’t sugarcoat among the extra poisonous “dish-throwing” features of the vampires’ relationship, he noticed great alternative in how he may depict it in an up to date adaptation.

Between Rice’s writings and the 1994 movie, which has its followers and critics alike, Jones acknowledged that the collection’ important forged “had massive ghosts behind them.” However he praised Anderson – who he identified is in almost each scene – and Reid for his or her stamina, in addition to the vary of their performances.

So far as the viewers are involved?

“I’d like them to be shocked. For many who understand it very well and adore it, I need them to keep it up for seven (episodes) and in the event that they’re nonetheless offended, that’s cool,” Jones mentioned. “However hopefully, I made one thing thrilling and thrilling for them.”

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