For the last year, Sherlock creators Steven Moffat and Mark Gatiss have been hard at work writing their eagerly-awaited Dracula adaptation – and now, according to the pair they’re finally finished.
“We just finished the third script today, a couple of hours ago,” Moffat revealed at the Radio Times Covers Party in an exclusive interview (below).
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“That’s why we’re here!” said co-writer Gatiss. “It’s going well.”
“Well I mean I say finished – we’ve written the last scene,” Moffat added.
“It has an ending. I’m sure we will be doing more work on it.”
Starring Danish actor Claes Bang, the duo’s Dracula series is set to return the iconic literary vampire to his 19th-century origins, and is a co-production between the BBC and streaming service Netflix (who will air the drama’s three feature-length episodes outside the UK).
And with the scripts now done and a read-through coming up, the pair confirmed that shooting is imminent, though they wouldn’t confirm exactly when or where the new Prince of Darkness will begin his journey, or which other actors will be joining Bang in the story.
“Yes, we are shooting soon – but obviously, we’re not telling you when,” Moffat said. “Very soon.”
“We’re not telling you where OR when,” agreed Gatiss. “It’s the usual game. You will be learning about [other cast members].”
“Yes, you will in the future – but not now,” Moffat said.
For the moment, anyway, the pair seem more than happy with their only announced cast member, singing the praises of Claes Bang and joking that he brings “tallness, Danishness, handsomeness, blood-drinking and vampirism” to the central role.
“He’s a fantastic choice, you know,” Gatiss told us.
“In a very similar way to Sherlock he’s the only person we considered. It was just like ‘Well – there he is!’ We watched this film he was in, called the Square, and you’ve just got to go ‘Look – he’s Dracula.’
“He read, and he was fantastic. He’s got incredible presence, brilliant looks, height, everything you want. And a sort of other-ness.
“And he does look genuinely like Christopher Lee and Bela Lugosi had a child. And it was Claes.”
Accordingly, the pair even joked that from now on they’d be working exclusively with Danish actors in honour of their leading man.
“Homegrown talent? No, it’s strictly Danes from now on,” Moffat said.
“We’re only casting out of Denmark. I don’t think Denmark has been sufficiently represented, and so we’re going to go all Dane.
“It worked for Hamlet! We’re hoping to get some of that energy.”
Frankly, it still wouldn’t be the biggest surprise these two have pulled off over the years – we’ll be looking out for a particularly Scandi-flavoured shoot over the next few weeks.
Dracula begins shooting later this year