Four-time Academy Award nominee Willem Dafoe is currently in talks for what will be his third collaboration with horror maven, Robert Eggers. According to Deadline, Dafoe is being considered for a role in Eggers‘ reimagination of the iconic horror classic, Nosferatu. Dafoe has been featured in all Eggers‘ feature films except his feature directorial debut The Witch (2015). The Lighthouse and The Northman, the two projects they did collaborate on together, were extremely well-received, which makes it easy to see why Eggers would want Dafoe back to feature in what he has openly described as his passion project, and which he has confessed to being obsessed about since childhood.
A remake of the horror gem that is the crown of the silent film era, Nosferatu is set to have its eerie tone elevated by Eggers‘ masterful spin. However, the film will remain loyal to the basics of the original premise centering on the titular ancient Transylvanian vampire who becomes obsessed with a teenager, stalking and causing her untold horror. Like the original, the film will be set in 19th-century Germany. While Dafoe has given us some of the best villainous performances we’ve seen in cinema, he won’t be portraying the titular blood-sucker in this film. That role instead goes to Bill Skarsgard (It) who was among the first set of cast revealed alongside Lily-Rose Depp who will portray his prey. But thankfully, Nosferatu is not lacking in evil characters, and fans who have been thrilled by Dafoe‘s nefarious acting skills will be hoping that he yet again gets to embody a bad guy. Fingers crossed, as his role yet remains unknown.
Dafoe notably portrayed the iconic vampire in Shadow of the Vampire (2000), which was made as a fictionalized account of what happened on the set of the original film after it garnered controversy for being an unauthorized adaptation of Bram Stoker‘s 1897 novel, Dracula. Dafoe‘s masterful performance as German actor Max Schreck, who played Count Orlok in Nosferatu earned him his second Academy Award nomination.
More recently in Eggers‘ The Lighthouse (2019), Dafoe displayed a compelling performance as a delusional lighthouse keeper. Other films where he’s notably portrayed the antagonist include Wild at Heart, Boondock Saints, American Psycho, and eXistenZ. Dafoe is also well-known for playing the supervillain, Green Goblin in Spider-Man films including most recently Spider-Man: No Way Home (2021). The Golden Globe and BAFTA nominee continues to keep busy and recently wrapped up filming for a handful of upcoming projects including Inside, Asteroid City, Poor Things, Gonzo Girl, Finalmente l’alba, and And.
Nosferatu is a Focus Features production with Eggers writing and directing. Producers include Jeff Robinov, John Graham, Robert Eggers, Chris Columbus, and Eleanor Columbus.
Focus Features is yet to announce a release date for the film.