Dario Argento certainly isn’t building any mystique around his upcoming low-budget Dracula 3D, starring Rutger Hauer and Asia Argento. In fact, the famed Italian director has just released a lengthy synopsis of the film, as well as handful of photos and a very long behind-the-scenes featurette. The Multimedia Film Production pic is currently filming in Italy.
Dracula 3D‘s newly launched official website offers fans (and the morbidly curious) a chance to see how the horror pic is coming along, and Argento sure seems like he wants the world to share in his movie-making process. This new version of the oft-adapted classic novel by Bram Stoker is getting a 3D refreshing, though the movie is based on the book and a period horror film.
Argento is a self-proclaimed technology enthusiast, who says his use of stereoscopic 3D filming techniques is a way to keep pace with the times and the new systems. As far as special effects in Dracula 3D, Argento said he will use CGI as well as practical effects, which he believes filmmakers can‘t totally withdraw from.
When I reported on Hauer’s casting as famed vampire hunting Van Helsing a few months ago, I mentioned Argento’s cinematic history. He made a name for himself with ‘70s cult classic Suspiria, a hallucinogenic trip into horror and the occult. He also has a slew of shock and schlock pics under his belt, and is a prolific screenwriter and director. But we haven’t seen anything seriously original or noteworthy from him for a long time, and taking on the iconic Dracula seems overly ambitious.
I also find it strange that he has cast his daughter in yet another of his films, especially as she is playing Lucy and there will naturally be a degree of sexuality surrounding her performance, perhaps even nudity (which she is no stranger to). Thomas Kretschmann (Resident Evil: Apocalypse) will take on the lead role of Dracula.
Looking at the featurette, the production values play almost comically low. We’ll have to wait and see if Argento can freshen this classic monster love story, or give it a bizarre cinematic twist that would make the remake worthwhile.
Check out the featurette, some movie photos, and the official synopsis below.
One night in the woods adjacent to Passo Borgo, at the foot of the Carpazi mountains, a couple of young lovers, Tania and Milos, secretly meet. On her way home, Tania is chased and overcome by a “dark shadow” that kills her. In those days Jonathan Harker, a young librarian, arrives at the village hired by Count Dracula, a nobleman from the area. Tania’s body mysteriously disappears from the cemetery. In the meantime Harker, before going to Count Dracula’s castle, takes the opportunity to visit Lucy Kisslinger, his wife Mina’s best friend as well as the daughter of the local mayor.
Upon arriving at the castle, Harker is greeted by Tania, brought back to life from the dead and made vampire, who tries from the very beginning to seduce him; however they are interrupted by Dracula’s entrance welcoming Harker. The following night Tania tries again to bite Harker, she is close to his neck when she is stopped by the count who gets the upper hand and it is he himself who bites Harker’s neck, however allowing him to live. The following day, weakened but still conscious Harker attempts to escape, but as soon as he is outside the castle a large wolf with a white lock assaults and savagely kills him. Meanwhile, Mina, Harker’s wife, arrives in the village and is guest for a few days at the home of her dearest friend Lucy Kisslinger, who will also be bitten and vampirized. The day after, Mina, worried about her husband, goes to Count Dracula’s castle. Their encounter makes her forget the reason for her presence there. She is completely under the count’s influence; the count had orchestrated the events leading up to their encounter; in fact Mina looks exactly like his beloved Dolinger, who died some centuries ago.
Upon her return to the Kisslinger house, Mina learns of the death of her dear friend Lucy. The sequence of such strange and dramatic events summons the aid of Van Helsing, vampire expert of the techniques used to eliminate them. Van Helsing, aware of the circumstances decides to act swiftly and prepares the tools needed to combat vampires. He directs himself to the center of evil, Count Dracula’s castle.
Meanwhile Dracula, in the village, kills the inhabitants who rescinded their pact, while Van Helsing, inside the castle, is able to definitively eliminate Tania. Dracula, intent on his desire to reunite with his beloved wife, leads Mina, completely hypnotized, to the castle where Van Helsing is waiting. He has decided to engage in a deadly fight with his evil foe. During the struggle Van Helsing loses his gun with the silver bullet and Mina, still under Dracula’s spell, gathers it and tries to aid Dracula, but she misses the target and involuntarily kills him. The special silver bullet transforms Dracula into ashes; but his spirit lifts the ashes into the air and uniting, they shape into a large bat with a mocking grin…