Experience RENAISSANCE: A FILM BY BEYONCÉ on the big screen this weekend! Get Tickets

Dracula’s Return To The Big Screen

July 26th, 2023Dracula’s Return To The Big Screen


One of the most influential stories in history, regardless of genre – but, especially, in the category of horror – is Bram Stoker’s “Dracula.” Not only has the 1897 novel itself been brought to the screen countless times – the earliest being a silent, unauthorized adaptation given the name NOSFERATU in 1922 – it has served as the quintessential source of inspiration for just about every work of vampire fiction to follow it. Some stories have even aimed to take a look at the original classic from a different perspective, such as THE LAST VOYAGE OF THE DEMETER.

This thriller, one of the most intriguing upcoming horror movies of 2023, is the latest feature by Norwegian filmmaker André Øvredal – the director of other chilling, acclaimed hits like 2010’s TROLL HUNTER, 2016’s THE AUTOPSY OF JANE DOE, and the 2019 adaptation of SCARY STORIES TO TELL IN THE DARK. That information alone might be enough to get some thrill seekers excited to see the film when it opens in AMC Theatres on Friday, August 11th, while others may be particularly curious about how the film relates to Dracula. Allow us to explain that and more you should know about THE LAST VOYAGE OF THE DEMETER before you experience the terror first-hand.

From A Chapter In Dracula

Much of the seventh chapter of Bram Stoker’s “Dracula” is framed as a newspaper clipping pasted into the journal of a character named Mina Murray. The article details the observations made surrounding a Russian schooner ship known as the Demeter – including the recovered pages of the Captain’s Log – which strangely arrived on Whitby Harbour completely empty… or so it seemed. This single, brief excerpt serves as the basis for THE LAST VOYAGE OF THE DEMETER.

Screenwriters Bragi F. Schut and Zac Olkewicz expand on the details provided in that one chapter of the seminal novel to craft a gothic creature feature set on the high-seas. The film follows the crew of the titular shipping vessel as they struggle to survive the night after discovering that a vicious, bloodsucking being has stowed itself on board. The beast in question is someone the world would come to know as Count Dracula.

Corey Hawkins Leads

The top-billed star of DEMETER – as a doctor who boards the ship named Clemens – is Corey Hawkins, who is best known for playing Dr. Dre in STRAIGHT OUTTA COMPTON’, and for starring in the “24” spinoff series, “24: Legacy.” He does have some experience with the horror genre, too, having recurred on “The Walking Dead” and starred in 2017’s KONG: SKULL ISLAND. Also well-versed in horror – from roles in movies like THE BELKO EXPERIMENT and THE BOOGEYMAN – despite being better known for comic book movies like THE DARK KNIGHT and ANT-MAN is David Dastmalchian, who plays Demeter’s first mate, Wojchek.

THE LAST VOYAGE OF THE DEMETER cast also includes THE NIGHTINGALE and “Game of Thrones” star Aisling Franciosi, fellow “GOT” actor Liam Cunningham, and DEADPOOL’s Colossus actor Stefan Kapičić., Jon Jon Briones – who starred in another prequel centered on a notorious villain character, Netflix’s “Ratched” – also stars, along with Chris Walley from 1917. As for who plays the monster of the hour, Dracula, we have Javier Botet, who has most definitely earned the honor, using his imposing frame to frighten audiences in horror movies like 2013’s MAMA in the title role, 2016’s THE CONJURING 2 as The Crooked Man, and 2017’s IT as Pennywise’s Hobo form, to name just a few.

Watch The Trailer

The world has seen countless variations of the character of Count Dracula – many of which, such as the iconic depiction by Bela Lugosi from 1931 – boast an aura of alluring sophistication. Very rarely has a screen adaptation really aimed to show the villain in his more animalistic state, but that appears to be the goal of THE LAST VOYAGE OF THE DEMETER, based on its trailer. See for yourself by watching the clip below.

The trailer is careful to take its time introducing its central characters before revealing the carnage they are destined to be subjected to once they discover they are not alone on board. However, once the blood starts dripping, it certainly does not stop, suggesting this could very likely be one of the brutal Dracula stories the world has seen in years.

It was just earlier this year when we saw another creative take on the legend of Dracula with RENFIELD, starring Nicolas Cage as the Count, but with Nicolas Hoult leading as his titular servant. Yet, fans of vampiric lore seeking something of a more earnest and certainly scarier degree will likely get just that when THE LAST VOYAGE OF THE DEMETER opens in August. Sink your teeth into this one when it comes to an AMC Theatres location near you!


Get Tickets to Titles in this Article