Renfield: Shohreh Aghdashloo joins Nicolas Cage Dracula film

Renfield, the new Universal Monsters movie that stars Nicolas Cage as Dracula, is now filming. Somewhere in New Orleans, the cast and crew are getting the opportunity to see what a Cage Dracula performance is like, long before we audience members will have the chance to experience it. Now Deadline has announced that Shohreh Aghdashloo (The Expanse) is among the cast members getting to see Cage play Dracula.

Aghdashloo is taking on the role of Ella, “a bold woman who is one of the most feared crime lords in the city.”

She joins a cast that, in addition to Cage, includes Nicholas Hoult as the title character Renfield, Awkwafina as traffic cop Rebecca Quincy, Adrian Martinez as her traffic cop partner Chris, and Ben Schwartz in an unspecified role.

Based on a treatment written by The Walking Dead creator Robert Kirkman, Renfield will be directed by Chris McKay (The Tomorrow War) from a screenplay by Ryan Ridley (Rick and Morty). In Bram Stoker’s novel Dracula

R.M. Renfield was an inmate at a lunatic asylum who was thought to be suffering from delusions but actually is a servant of Dracula. Plot details of the movie weren’t announced, but it’s believed to take place during the present day and is not a period piece.

Kirkman has said Renfield is “a story about him being Dracula’s henchman and how shitty a job that is.” In this film, he has been serving the bloodsucker for centuries, and now he

has grown sick and tired of his centuries as Dracula’s lackey. The henchman finds a new lease on life life and maybe even redemption when he falls for feisty, perennially angry traffic cop Rebecca Quincy.

While Universal is developing several monster projects, Deadline previously reported that they’re excited about Renfield because the story’s “mix of humor and action was something the studio was looking for because so many of the other properties have more of a horror element to them.” 

Kirkman, who has described the film as “a violent comedy”, is producing Renfield with David Alpert, Bryan Furst, and Sean Furst of Skybound Entertainment, alongside McKay’s producing partner Samantha Nisenboim.

Aghdashloo’s other credits include House of Sand and Fog, 24, The Exorcism of Emily Rose, X-Men: The Last Stand, The Lake House, Grimm, Star Trek Beyond, The Punisher, The Flight Attendant, and Ghostbusters: Afterlife (where she provided the voice of Gozer).

Source: Deadline

About the Author

Cody is a news editor and film critic, focused on the horror arm of, and writes scripts for videos that are released through the JoBlo Originals and JoBlo Horror Originals YouTube channels. In his spare time, he's a globe-trotting digital nomad, runs a personal blog called Life Between Frames, and writes novels and screenplays.