Paramount TV and Anonymous Content (True Detective, The Knick) just optioned all eleven novels in Anne Rice’s Vampire Chronicles book series. The studio plans to bring the story to series on television. The studio looks to clean the slate completely ignoring the previous films, and start fresh.
The books focus on the idiosyncratic 18th Century French nobleman Lestat de Lioncourt. He has the misfortune of becoming a vampire. The series has had two film adaptations. The first one was the 1994 smash-hit Interview with the Vampire, starring Brad Pitt and Tom Cruise. It was directed by Neil Jordan. The film saw great success at the box office, and fans were eager to get a sequel.
Born as an 18th Century lord, Louis (Brad Pitt) is now a bicentennial vampire, telling his story to an eager biographer (Christian Slater). Suicidal after the death of his family, he meets Lestat (Tom Cruise), a vampire who persuades him to choose immortality over death and become his companion. Eventually, gentle Louis resolves to leave his violent maker, but Lestat guilts him into staying by turning a young girl (Kirsten Dunst) — whose addition to the “family” breeds even more conflict.
The second film was 2002’s Queen of the Damned, starring Stuart Townsend and pop singer Aaliyah, which flopped and any future sequels were shelved. A third film, based on the fourth book on the franchise The Tale of the Body Thief, never made it past initial talks. The Queen of the Damned film merged elements of the second book in the series The Vampire Lestat with the third novel Queen of the Damned.
Rice will sit in as one of the show’s executive producers. Her son, Christopher Rice, will pen and helm the series. According to Rice, her and her son have labored for some time on the show. Now that the rights issues are settled, the series can proceed.
The series will look to cover the entire book series: Interview with the Vampire, The Vampire Lestat, Queen of the Damned, The Tale of the Body Thief, Memnoch the Devil, The Vampire Armand, Merrick, Blood and Gold, Blackwood Farm, Blood Canticle, and the final book, Prince Lestat.
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