Doug Jones has spent the last 30 years of his career lending his angular figures, lanky frame, and considerable skills as a physical performer to any number of Hollywood monsters, from heroic warriors like Hellboy’s Abe Sapien, to hideous nightmare creatures, like McDonald’s spokesperson Mac Tonight. Now, he’s taking a crack at one of the original horror icons, signing on to star in a remake of F.W. Murnau’s classic Dracula-but-please-don’t-sue-us movie, Nosferatu.
The film is being directed by David Lee Fisher, who worked with Jones a decade ago on another retread of a milestone in German Expressionist horror, The Cabinet Of Dr. Caligari. There, Jones played Caligari’s sleepwalking slave, the lumbering Cesare. This time, though, he’s taking on the title role, stepping into shoes previously filled by Max Schreck, Willem Dafoe, and Klaus Kinski, who played the sinister count in Werner Herzog’s celebrated 1979 remake of the film.
Fisher’s film—which will apparently be some sort of odd Nosferatu “remix,” combining new segments filmed by Jones with scenes from the 1921 original, and “colorized digital backgrounds recreated from the original film”—is apparently distinct from another version of the movie that was announced last year, with The Witch’s Robert Eggers set to direct. (Eggers has since said that Nosferatu won’t be his next project.) Jones, meanwhile, will precede Nosferatu with this June’s The Bye-Bye Man, a juxtaposition of titles that’s going to look pretty funny someday on the veteran actor’s IMDB page.