Dracula: star of Moffat and Gatiss’ series resisted role at first

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Claus Bang thought it was too soon for a new Dracula adaptation…

Claes Bang will star as quintessentially charming bloodsucker Dracula in the BBC’s imminent three-part series, but the actor didn’t respond well when he first heard he could be up for the lead role.

“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’.

“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.”

Dracula stars Lyndsey Marshal (Trauma), Chanel Cresswell (The Bay), Matthew Beard (An Education), Lydia West (Years & Years), Paul Brennen (Wild Bill), Sarah Niles (Catastrophe), Sofia Oxenham (Poldark), John McCrea (Everybody’s Talking About Jamie), Phil Dunster (Humans), newcomer Millicent Wong, Jonny Campbell (Informer), Damon Thomas (Killing Eve). Paul McGuigan (Sherlock) directs.

Dracula will premiere on BBC One on New Year’s Day in the UK and on Netflix outside of the UK and Ireland.