Nicolas Cage Is Out for Blood as Dracula on New Orleans Set of 'Renfield'

Nicolas Cage and Nicholas Hoult star in the upcoming horror-comedy Renfield

Nic Cage Dracula
Photo: MEGA

Nicolas Cage is getting spooky.

Cage, 58, is hard at work playing iconic vampire Dracula in Universal's Renfield opposite The Great's Nicholas Hoult, who stars as the titular Renfield, a henchman of the villainous monster in Bram Stoker's original 1897 novel, Dracula. The movie is being directed by The Tomorrow War's Chris McKay.

In on-set photos obtained exclusively by PEOPLE, the two stars are visible in character for the first time, in New Orleans on Tuesday, with Cage sporting pale makeup, slicked-back hair, long fingernails and plenty of colorful jewelry.

Hoult, 32, also appeared covered in blood between takes.

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Nic Cage Dracula

Cage told Variety's Awards Circuit podcast in December that he wants to bring "something new" to the character, who has previously been portrayed onscreen by Bela Lugosi in the black-and-white Universal classic, Gary Oldman in Francis Ford Coppola's 1992 version, Frank Langella, Christopher Lee, Gerard Butler and Luke Evans, among others.

"I want it to pop in a unique way from how we've seen it played. So I'm thinking to really focus on the movement of the character. You know, I saw Malignant and I thought what she did with those moves — and even Ringu with Sadako [Yamamura]," he said at the time. "I want to look at what we can explore with this movement and voice."

Nic Cage Dracula

"What makes it super fun is that it's a comedy. And when you get that tone right — comedy and horror — like American Werewolf in London, it's a blast," continued Cage. "It's got to be a bullseye. But that's what I'm looking for, something new to bring to the character and also that perfect tone of comedy and horror."

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"I can tell you that it's amazing. It's a really fun and exciting opportunity," he added of the project

Speaking with GQ for the magazine's April 2022 cover story, Cage teased that he's channeling his late father August Coppola for his Dracula — and he's dieting to resemble David Bowie's Thin White Duke.

"August Coppola's coming back. And he's coming back as Dracula," he said, later adding, "This isn't really on my diet right now. I'm trying to become the Thin White Duke for Dracula."

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