Even though vampire fiction isn't as inescapable as it was a few years ago when Twilight was a pop culture mainstay, the horror villain's presence in our lives is most certainly still there, and it could get a lot more noticeable in the future. Why? Because the queen of vampire lore Anne Rice has announced her plans to give her beloved Vampire Chronicles series a live-action update, and she intends to make television the place where it happens. In her words:
The theatrical rights to the Vampire Chronicles are once again in my hands, free and clear! I could not be more excited about this! --- A television series of the highest quality is now my dream for Lestat, Louis, Armand, Marius and the entire tribe. In this the new Golden Age of television, such a series is THE way to let the entire story of the vampires unfold.
Now that's an idea with some bite, no? (Sorry.) Truly, there are few vampire-related projects whose developments could have been announced that would require a bigger cheer than Anne Rice's novel series. It all started back in 1976 with the seminal classic Interview with the Vampire, and there have been another dozen works in the years since, with only two feature films to show for it all. (And only one that was worth a damn.) Seeing this epic, sprawling tale getting sorted out for episodic viewing is the best case scenario for Rice and her loyal fans.
The New Orleans native made her big announcement via a Facebook post recently, and though it's important to note that this early stage means there aren't any networks or studios attached yet, Rice was thoughtfully detailed in how she and others are tackling the development. She will be developing the pilot script with her son and fellow genre author Christopher Rice, and both would serve as executive producers, with Christopher in more of a hands-on role. They will also be creating a detailed outline for a Vampire Chronicles series that is open-ended and largely faithful to how main vampire Lestat's story is laid out. It's an effort of the monumental kind, but there's no one better fit for it than Anne Rice herself.
It's still too soon to celebrate, of course, but it is fantastic that Anne Rice has regained the screen rights to her Vampire Chronicles novels. While 1994's feature Interview with the Vampire was a lush and lovely vehicle for Tom Cruise and Brad Pitt, Queen of the Damned was very uneven, and all attempts to spin movies out of other books have come up short, regardless of what studio was working on them. I can easily see networks or streaming outlets getting behind a live-action take on some of the most famous bloodsuckers in literature.