Dracula star Claes Bang was initially “in doubt” over another adaptation

The Danish actor told RadioTimes.com he wasn't originally sure a new version was necessary - but changed his mind upon reading the script

Dracula (Claes Bang) and Sister Agatha (Dolly Wells)

Dracula is one of the most hotly anticipated shows of this year’s festive TV schedule, with scores of fans desperate to see what Steven Moffat and Mark Gatiss have done with the legendary monster.

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But surprisingly, one person who initially wasn’t keen for another adaptation of Bram Stoker’s iconic horror novel was the series’ star Claes Bang.

Bang said that he had some reservations about yet another version of the story, before being won over upon reading the script.

In an exclusive interview with RadioTimes.com earlier this year, Bang said, “When my agent phoned me up and said ‘They want to talk to you about Dracula’, I was like, ‘One more Dracula? Really? Do we need that?’ And I really was very much in doubt.

“Then I read it, and then I didn’t doubt it for a second anymore. And that’s what you have to go back to if you start doubting it, or thinking about it, is that the first time I read this I was like, ‘Whoa, this is fresh and new and here’s the best reason you can actually get for doing one more, is right here in the writing’.”

WARNING: Embargoed for publication until 00:00:01 on 07/12/2019 - Programme Name: Dracula - TX: n/a - Episode: Dracula - episode 2 (No. n/a) - Picture Shows: Dracula (CLAES BANG), Captain Sokolov (JONATHAN ARIS), Dr Sharma (SACHA DHAWAN) - (C) Hartswood Films - Photographer: Robert Viglasky

Explaining what it was that makes the new version fresh, Bang continued that Moffat and Gatiss had injected the script with their own style and sense of humour.

“I suppose it’s just about doing what speaks to you. I mean, take your Dracula and try and do with him what you would like to do with him. And I think [Moffat and Gatiss] have done that, and that came across immediately when I read it. And therefore, all the doubt was out of the window in a second.

“Just hearing about it, I thought, ‘When was the last time there was a Dracula? It was like two days ago.’ But if you let the whole universe speak to you, and then transform itself through you, I think that’s what has happened here. You’ve done that. And there’s so much of you and your humour in it.”

In an entertainment landscape where remakes and sequels are perhaps more ubiquitous than ever before, this news will likely come as refreshing to some fans who had similar doubts about the upcoming series – and ensure those who were already looking forward to it even more excited.

The series is expected to include both its fair share of gore and some more light-hearted humour, so it will certainly be interesting to see how it plays with fans.

Interview conducted by Jo Berry

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Dracula will debut 9pm on on New Year’s Day at BBC One, with episodes two and three airing on 2nd and 3rd January