Adapting a long-beloved written work for TV is likely never an easy task for writers and producers, and one can imagine the complications only grow more numerous when such small screen projects have been preceded by well-received feature films. Such is the case with AMC’s episodic spin on Anne Rice’s seminal bloodsucking tale Interview with the Vampire, which was famously brought to the big screen in 1994, with Tom Cruise and Brad Pitt in the roles of Lestat and Louis. The Newsreader’s Sam Reid and Game of Thrones vet Jacob Anderson will be filling those roles respectively for television, and they have both addressed their thoughts about taking on such iconic roles, and why AMC’s show won’t just be a rehashing.
Despite various hiccups keeping it from moving forward in years past, Interview with the Vampire is now fully destined to reach audiences upon its debut for streaming (AMC+) and linear TV (AMC) on October 2. And while the cast and crew no doubt are expecting to face tons of comparisons to Neil Jordan’s film, even beyond what they’re already heard, they respectfully pointed out during the series’ Television Critics Association summer tour panel how it will be a more expansive take on the source material than the film ever could have been. After younger co-star Bailey Bass pointed out she wasn’t even born when Kirsten Dunst first earned the role of Claudia, Sam Reid reflected on his own fandom (and age) when explaining arguably the biggest inherent difference between the two projects, saying:
Though it might not be something potential viewers immediately consider without it being pointed out, the 1994 film was released after only four books within Anne Rice’s Vampire Chronicles series had been published, with another nine novels following 1992’s The Tale of the Body Thief. (As well as the two New Tales of the Vampires books.) As such, star Sam Reid, showrunner Rolin Jones and the rest of the creative team had a far bigger wealth of material from which to dig into as a way of informing who the character of Lestat is within the world of Interview with the Vampire.
Which isn’t to say Reid believes that means his take on Lestat is going to completely dwarf one of Tom Cruise’s most atypical roles. He continued:
I’m not sure Tom Cruise could even recreate what Tom Cruise did with that role at the time, so godspeed to Sam Reid and his well-rounded approach to the somewhat eternal vampire. For those who most enjoyed the underlying homoeroticism between Cruise and Pitt’s characters, the cast also revealed viewers can expect a more direct take on those vibes with the TV show.
Embrace the ability to choose between versions, rather than arguing over which one is better. Since that argument likely isn’t going to be successful at persuading people to knock it off, let’s roadblock those thoughts with the first trailer for Interview with the Vampire.
Interview with the Vampire will fly into viewers’ homes (only after being invited) on Sunday, October 2, at 10:00 p.m. ET, an hour after The Walking Dead kicks off its final eight-episode run. While waiting for vampires and zombies (and even Rice’s Mayfair Witches) to run amok, head to our 2022 TV premiere schedule to see what other new and returning shows are on the way.
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Nick is a Cajun Country native and an Assistant Managing Editor with a focus on TV and features. His humble origin story with CinemaBlend began all the way back in the pre-streaming era, circa 2009, as a freelancing DVD reviewer and TV recapper. Nick leapfrogged over to the small screen to cover more and more television news and interviews, eventually taking over the section for the current era and covering topics like Yellowstone, The Walking Dead and horror. Born in Louisiana and currently living in Texas — Who Dat Nation over America’s Team all day, all night — Nick spent several years in the hospitality industry, and also worked as a 911 operator. If you ever happened to hear his music or read his comics/short stories, you have his sympathy.