Set Visit Preview: ‘Cirque Du Freak’

Inside you’ll find our set visit preview piece for Universal’s adaptation of Cirque Du Freak. In the film John C. Reilly will play a vampire who drafts a 14-year old to serve as his assistant. The youth is turned into a half-vampire and becomes the catalyst in a battle between vampires and the rival Vampanese. The studio bought rights in 2005 to a series of 12 books. Watch for the full report and interview later this year.
An Early Look at the Sets of the Big-Screen Adaptation of the Darren Shan Series.

As the race to find the next Harry Potter continues in Hollywood, the latest book series to make it to the big screen has a little bit of something for everyone. I mean, maybe you don’t like vampires, but what about circus freaks? Come on, you’ve got to like one or the other right?

For those unfamiliar with Darren Shan’s 12-part young adult novels, Cirque Du Freak, the book series is a runaway success in the U.K. and should soon be crossing over stateside.

14-year-old Darren is a normal schoolboy who goes to see a freak show with his best friend Steve. The night offers more than Darren bargained for and he soon finds himself leaving his family behind, thrust into the center of an age-old battle between Vampires and the rival Vampanese.

Cirque Du Freak is being adapted for the big screen by Paul Weitz (About a Boy, American Pie) and we recently got a chance to hang out on the highly inventive and trippy sets in New Orleans. We can’t reveal the full details just yet, but we did get a tour of the sets with production designer William Arnold. We had an extensive lunch interview with Weitz and spoke to Larten Crepsley himself, John C. Reilly. The previously unannounced Willem Dafoe (who plays Gavner Purl) was also on set as well as lead actor Chris Massoglia, who plays Darren. Finally, we checked out some footage of Salma Hayek as the bearded lately. Amazingly, she’s still pretty hot with the ZZ Top look.

The 75-day shoot was nearing the end during our visit and, although Universal hasn’t set a release date just yet, they are hinting at sometime in early 2009. We’ll be bringing you the full report as soon as we get the go-ahead and you can expect plenty more news on Cirque Du Freak as we head towards next year’s release!