Katie McGrath (“Merlin”) and Nonso Anozie (“The Grey”) are the latest additions to NBC’s 10 episode “Dracula” series. Deadline Hollywood reports that McGrath will play Lucy Westenra, the glamorous and flirtatious best friend of series heroine Mina Murray. Jessica De Gouw is already cast in that role. Nonso Anozie will be playing Renfield, described as Dracula’s fiercely loyal confidante.
Dracula himself is being played Jonathan Rhys Meyers.
In the NBC version, Dracula, under the alias Alan Grayson, arrives in Victorian London seeking revenge on people who ruined his life centuries earlier. Quite apart from the fact it would be assumed the actual life-ruiners are presumably long dead, Dracula/Grayson is distracted by medical student Mina Murray’s resemblance to his own dead wife.
It might be noted that from the descriptions coming out, NBC’s “Dracula” bears about as much resemblance to Bram Stoker’s classic novel as a trailer home to Trump Towers. (Spoiler alert.) In Stoker’s novel, Jonathan Harker, an English lawyer, travels to Transylvania to help a reclusive nobleman, Count Dracula, arrange for a number of real estate purchases in England. Dracula turns out be a vampire (please don’t tell me you didn’t know that) and Harker soon finds he’s a prisoner in his castle, and is stranded there with Dracula’s vampire brides when he makes good his departure. Before long, Dracula is in England, possessing Harker’s fiancee Mina’s best friend Lucy. As she begins to mysteriously waste away, one of Lucy’s suitors, a doctor, calls in an old teacher, Professor Van Helsing, to consult. Van Helsing guesses her the true nature of her condition, and when Lucy mysteriously dies, reports begin surfacing of children being stalked a mysterious, spectral woman. Under Van Helsing’s guidance, Lucy, now a vampire, is uncovered to be the mysterious woman, and her friends drive a stake through her heart. Dracula then declares war and goes after Mina. Renfield is a mental patient who is under Dracula’s influence.
If you’re craving more, and you should be, the book has never been out of print since its first publication in 1897. Kindle readers take note. It’s generally free as an E-Book.