11 February 2013 2:00 PM, PST | TVLine.com | See recent TVLine.com news »

Thomas Kretschmann (King Kong) has joined NBC’s Dracula as the legendary Abraham Van Helsing — but the character’s not the heroic hunter other vamp dramas have made him out to be.

In the forthcoming period drama, TVLine has learned, Kretschmann’s Van Helsing is a brilliant professor obsessed with revenge and power. He may be a greater threat to the public than the titular count (played by The TudorsJonathan Rhys Meyers).

British actor Oliver Jackson-Cohen also has been cast as Jonathan Harker, a handsome and tenacious journalist desperate to become an artstocrat.

The 10-episode series, based on Bram Stoker’s novel of the same name, finds Dracula preparing to unleash hell on the Victorian society responsible for ruining his life. But he’s thrown when he falls for a woman who’s a dead ringer for his beloved, long-deceased wife.

Kretschmann’s TV credits include The RiverFlashForward and 24. Coincidentally, he played the bloodsucking title role in the 2012 movie Dracula 3D.

Jackson-Cohen plays Roddy on the ITV series Mr. Selfridge; he also appeared in the film Going the Distance and as Prince William (opposite GirlsAllison Williams) in Funnyordie.com’s Will & Kate: Before Happily Ever After.

Dracula‘s cast also includes Katie McGrath (Merlin), Nonso Anonzie (Game of Thrones) and Jessica De Gouw (Arrow).

NBC has not yet announced a premiere date.

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- Kimberly Roots

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