Bloody Disgusting is reporting that Robert Downey Jr is in talks to play the role of Lestat in a reboot of Universal Picture’s The Vampire Chronicles (you know, the original fey vamp books: Interview With a Vampire, The Vampire Lestat and Queen of the Damned). This is shocking news – not that Universal is digging up the incredibly superior Anne Rice books in the wake of Twilight‘s fangularity, but that Downey wants another franchise.
Lestat was orginally played by Tom Cruise in the movie version of Interview With the Vampire; it’s one of Cruise’s best performances, and a fairly perfect role for the actor. I’m not as certain that Downey is as right – Lestat has a wry humor, but he’s a relentless pretty boy. I also think Downey’s too old for the role, and he’s only going to get older if the franchise takes off. In The Vampire Lestat Lestat becomes a rock god – Downey is more believable as a rock god of the 80s making his comeback today.
I really dug the original adaptation of Interview With the Vampire, and I don’t fully understand why it never quite hit and why the follow-up, a shitty take on Queen of the Damned, was so cheap and awful. If The Vampire Chronicles are coming back, I’m first in line. I just hope that the producers realize their Lestat needs to be a sleek, sexy 27 year old.