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Anne Rice's The Vampire Chronicles has been optioned for a TV series

04.28.2017

Oh, and how the ladies swooned when Brad Pitt transformed from a human into a marble-skinned creature of the night. For real, I think that I can still hear their breathy sighs of titillation on the echoes of the wind to this very day. Oh, the punchiness of a Friday afternoon. You've got to love it. 

Today, it's being reported that best-selling author of THE VAMPIRE CHRONICLES, Anne Rice, is beginning work on a television series based on her long-standing and highly successful vampire novel series. Anne, who for this project will work beside her son, novelist and columnist Christopher Rice, has revealed that, at long last, Paramount and Anonymous Content have optioned the 11 book series for a televised adaptation. As of the moment, Christopher Rice is set to write the series in addition to serving as the project's executive producer in a partnership with Anne Rice, and Anonymous Content's David Kanter and Steve Golin. 

While commenting on the high-profile acquisition, President of Paramount TV's Amy Powell stated, “It is undeniable that Anne Rice has created the paradigm against which all vampire stories are measured. The rich and vast world she has created with The Vampire Chronicles is unmatched and sophisticated with 90’s Gothic undertones that will be perfectly suited to captivate audience. The series is full of compelling characters led by Lestat, arguably one of the greatest original characters, literary or otherwise."

In also wanting to express his enthusiasm for the project, Anonymous Content’s David Kanter commented, "Together with our partners at Paramount Television, we are embarking on a fantastic journey with Anne and Christopher Rice to bring Anne’s unparalleled imagination to television at the moment when the medium is experiencing a global apex in the demand for the most outstanding, exciting and heightened premium dramatic programming."

High-on-the-totem-pole players aren't the only ones excited about the potential of bringing THE VAMPIRE CHRONICLES to life on the small screen, though. Anne Rice also spoke in regard to her excitement for the forthcoming adaptation by saying, “In this unique golden age of television, I couldn’t ask for a finer or more passionate team to help bring my beloved vampire hero, Lestat, alive in a series of the highest quality. This is a dream come true, both for me and for Christopher and for the fans who have been asking to see the Brat Prince in this medium for years.”

Then, as a follow-up to his mother's words, Christopher Rice stated, “The first great day for me on this project was when my mother asked me to partner with her on it. The second, is the announcement of this thrilling partnership with Paramount Television and Anonymous Content. For decades now fans of ‘The Vampire Chronicles’ have been clamoring for a long-form television adaptation of this galaxy of content.”

For those of you who might not remember the 1994 vampire drama INTERVIEW WITH THE VAMPRIE: THE VAMPIRE CHRONICLES starring Tom Cruise, Brad Pitt, Christian Slater, and a very young Kirsten Dunst, here's a little refresher - 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 remands him into staying by turning a young girl (Kirsten Dunst) -- whose addition to the "family" breeds even more conflict.

Vampires are still in, right? I think that it's safe to assume that we're now past the TWILIGHT years and can start bringing vicious yet romantic blood suckers back to the big leagues, yeah? In my opinion, this is potentially very exciting news, especially when you consider that Anne regained the theatrical rights to THE VAMPIRE CHRONICLES last November, when Warner Bros. finally released their iron grip on the best-selling series. While I remember being a big fan of director Neil Jordan's INTERVIEW WITH THE VAMPIRE: THE VAMPIRE CHRONICLES, I do recall that the follow-up to that film, QUEEN OF THE DAMNED, was not nearly as well received by audiences. Needless to say, the experience has left Anne Rice feeling quite un-enchanted with the wicked ways of big screen Hollywood.

In talking about her trepidation regarding the silver screen market, Anne posted the following statement via her official Facebook page, “As many of you know, Universal Studios and Imagine Entertainment had optioned the series to develop motion pictures from it, and though we had the pleasure of working with many fine people in connection with this plan, it did not work out. It is, more than ever, abundantly clear that television is where the vampires belong,” 

With a bright new future set for THE VAMPIRE CHRONICLES universe, I'm sure that it won't be long before casting news and premiere dates start rolling in for this long-awaited revival of the vampire series that arguably changed the way audiences view Dracula's children of the night forever.   

Extra Tidbit: Dunst famously described her first on-screen kiss—with Brad Pitt, no less—as “disgusting” on the Sept. 23, 2014 episode of Conan.

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7:02PM on 04/28/2017

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