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The network has ordered 10 episodes of the drama series, tapping The Tudors‘ Jonathan Rhys Meyers to play the famous vampire in what NBC Entertainment president Robert Greenblatt dubbed a “new version of the classic Bram Stoker” tale.
The series, which bypassed the traditional pilot stage, takes place in the 1890s and finds Dracula living a double life in London as an American businessman interested in bringing modern science to Victorian society. His true plan to exact revenge on those who burdened him centuries ago, however, is derailed when he falls in love with a woman who looks just like his late wife.
Dracula unites Greenblatt — who noted Tuesday morning at TCA that he had other big announcements that weren’t quite ready at the time of his executive session — with his former star Meyers, whom he cast on the Showtime period drama and cast as Elvis Presley on the telepic Elvis.
“In the world of Twilight and True Blood and all the contemporized stories, we thought we’d go back to the original,” he told reporters Tuesday at TCA, noting that the series would stay true to the time period but look toward the future.
Dracula, a co-production from British Sky Broadcasting, Carnival Films & Television, Flame Ventures and NBCuniversal, hails from Tony Krantz (24, Sports Night) and former HBO Films president Colin Callender and writer/creator Cole Haddon (who will co-exec produce) and will be produced for NBC stateside and the U.K.’s Sky Living. Gareth Neame (Downton Abbey) and Anne Mensah are also on board, along with Reece Pearson, who will also serve as a co-EP.
Additional castings and production details will be announced at a later date. Haddon is repped by ICM Partners and Anonymous Content.
The Dracula order comes as NBC is readying another supernatural-type drama in its reboot of The Munsters. From Pushing Daisies creator Bryan Fuller, NBC previewed the pilot for Mockingbird Lane this month at Comic-Con. A decision on the effort, which has received an order for additional scripts, is expected to come in the next month or so. Eddie Izzard portrays Grandpa Munster, a Dracula-like figure, in Mockingbird Lane.
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