The Dark Universe may have imploded at the first hurdle to the surprise of hardly anyone except the executives at Universal, but the studio are already in the process of rebooting their classic monsters again. Things got off to a great start with Leigh Whannell’s The Invisible Man, which raked in almost $135 million at the box office on a $7 million budget, opening the floodgates in the process.
Whannell will be diving into the back catalogue once more when he directs Ryan Gosling in The Wolfman, while there’s also Elizabeth Banks’ The Invisible Woman, Blumhouse’s new take on Frankenstein and Karyn Kusama’s Dracula all in the works. On top of all that, though, insider Daniel Richtman is now claiming that Benedict Cumberbatch is being eyed to play the iconic Count as well, something that we previously told you months ago.
However, the Sherlock star won’t be heading up Kusama’s Dracula, but is instead in the running for spinoff Renfield, focusing on the titular minion from Bram Stoker’s novel. Rocketman and Sherlock Holmes 3 director Dexter Fletcher has been attached since the project was first announced in November of last year following a pitch from The Walking Dead co-creator Robert Kirkman. Rick and Morty and Community writer Ryan Ridley is tackling the script, while Dracula is only expected to exist on the peripherals of the story and not take center stage at the expense of whoever ends up being cast as Renfield himself.
If Cumberbatch signs on, he’ll be the latest actor to have played both Sherlock Holmes and Dracula after Christopher Lee, Frank Langella and Richard Roxburgh. There’s no telling at this early stage if he’ll have time for the project or is even interested in it, but Richtman notes that the studio wants him for the role and with any luck, we’ll hear more about the pic in the not too distant future.