The 1922 German horror classic Nosferatu is getting a reboot. That news alone may not be well-received by dedicated horror fans throughout the world, as Nosferatu is spoken of with reverence amid the most dedicated fans of vampires and horror. There seems to be little to soothe those feeling Nosferatu should be left to stand as it is, but Deadline, reporting on the news, seemed to provide a more hopeful outlook for the Nosferatu reboot.
“This will be a visceral adaptation of F.W. Murnau’s 1922 silent film masterpiece that brings the horrific vampire of Eastern European folklore back to the screen.”
While some may say news of a Nosferatu reboot is as bad as the news can get, the other shoe has yet to drop, and the director wearing that other shoe has very limited experience as a director. While future Nosferatu director Robert Eggers has only a couple of short films to his credit and one full-length feature film, The Witch, the future Nosferatu director has primarily worked as a production designer.
The Witch made a successful debut at this year’s Sundance Film Festival, due in large part to the set designs and construction as well as the unique scares it offers.
While there is no trailer available yet for Eggers’ The Witch, the film’s IMDb page provides a synopsis.
“New England, 1630: William and Katherine lead a devout Christian life, homesteading on the edge of an impassible wilderness, with five children. When their newborn son mysteriously vanishes and their crops fail, the family begins to turn on one another. ‘The Witch’ is a chilling portrait of a family unraveling within their own fears and anxieties, leaving them prey for an inescapable evil.”
Moving on to his next project, Eggers has spent months trying to obtain the rights to Nosferatu. In addition to directing, Eggers will also write the script for the Nosferatu reboot. Jay Van Hoy and Lars Knudsen are to produce the film.
The 1922 Nosferatu film was the first adaptation of Bram Stoker’s Dracula and, as such, has inspired many similar vampire films, though few seem to retain the cult following enjoyed by F.W. Murnau‘s Nosferatu. A 2000 film, Shadow of the Vampire, explores Nosferatu and, more specifically, the film’s star, Max Schreck. The story of Shadow of the Vampire puts forth the theory that Schreck was a real vampire and that the director of Nosferatu deliberately sought him out and cast him in the film to add authenticity to the vampire legend.
There will undoubtedly be many debates, once news of a Nosferatu reboot to be directed by a fairly inexperienced filmmaker gains the attention of horror fans. In any case, we may find a new classic with the Nosferatu reboot. Or we may have yet another reboot to add to the slush pile. It remains to be seen.
[Featured image courtesy of Jofa-Atelier Berlin-Johannisthal/Nosferatu]