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Dracula (1979) More at IMDbPro »

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W.D. Richter (screenplay)
Hamilton Deane (play) ...
View company contact information for Dracula on IMDbPro.
Release Date:
20 July 1979 (USA) See more »
Throughout history he has filled the hearts of men with terror, and the hearts of women with desire. See more »
Romanticized adaptation of Bram Stoker's 1897 classic. Set in 1913 England, the bloodsucking, but handsome, charming and seductive, Count Dracula seeks an immortal bride. Full summary » | Full synopsis »
1 win & 4 nominations See more »
(47 articles)
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User Reviews:
Strange approach to an over-worked story. Doesn't work especially well as it prioritises stylishness while neglecting the scares. See more (107 total) »


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Directed by
John Badham 
Writing credits
W.D. Richter (screenplay)

Hamilton Deane (play) and
John L. Balderston (play)

Bram Stoker (novel)

Produced by
Marvin Mirisch .... executive producer (as Marvin E. Mirisch)
Walter Mirisch .... producer
Tom Pevsner .... associate producer
Original Music by
John Williams 
Cinematography by
Gilbert Taylor (director of photography)
Film Editing by
John Bloom 
Casting by
Mary Selway 
Production Design by
Peter Murton 
Art Direction by
Brian Ackland-Snow 
Costume Design by
Julie Harris 
Makeup Department
Eric Allwright .... makeup artist
Susie Hill .... hair stylist
Colin Jamison .... hair stylist
Peter Robb-King .... makeup artist
Jane Royle .... makeup artist
Production Management
Hugh Harlow .... production manager
Second Unit Director or Assistant Director
Gerry Gavigan .... second unit director
Anthony Wave .... assistant director
Anthony Waye .... assistant director
Art Department
Andy Andrews .... property master
Terry Apsey .... construction manager
Reg Richards .... construction manager
Peter Young .... set dresser
Andy Aitken .... plasterer (uncredited)
Dennis Murray .... plasterer (uncredited)
Sound Department
Jonathan Bates .... sound editor
Robin Gregory .... sound mixer
Gerry Humphreys .... sound re-recordist
Terry Sharratt .... boom operator
Jeremy Hume .... assistant sound editor (uncredited)
Special Effects by
Roy Arbogast .... special effects
Michael Dawson .... special effects assistant
Tad Krzanowski .... special effects (uncredited)
Michael White .... special effects assistant (uncredited)
Visual Effects by
Maurice Binder .... visual consultant
Brian Smithies .... models
Albert Whitlock .... special visual effects
Henry Schoessler .... matte crew (uncredited)
Eddie Powell .... stunt coordinator
Camera and Electrical Department
Roger Berner .... assistant camera
Leslie Dear .... additional photographer
Wick Finch .... electrician
Roy Ford .... camera operator
Ray Hall .... grip
Harry Oakes .... additional photographer
Bob Penn .... still photographer (as Robert Penn)
Laurie Shane .... gaffer
Peter Taylor .... assistant camera
Roy Larner .... best boy (uncredited)
Marc Wolff .... pilot: camera helicopter (uncredited)
Costume and Wardrobe Department
Brenda Dabbs .... costume supervisor
Editorial Department
Chris Ridsdale .... assistant editor (as Christopher Ridsdale)
Music Department
Herbert W. Spencer .... orchestrator (as Herbert Spencer)
John Williams .... conductor
Other crew
Gordon Arnell .... publicist
Jim Brennan .... location manager
Bee Broomfield .... production secretary
Pamela Carlton .... continuity
Len Cave .... production accountant
Reg Dent .... horse master
Jan Francis .... dance arranger
John Holmes .... animal coordinator
Philip Kohler .... location manager
Julie Thompson .... assistant: Mr. Badham
Joyce Turner .... production assistant
Crew believed to be complete

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Additional Details

Also Known As:
109 min
Color (Technicolor)
Aspect Ratio:
2.35 : 1 See more »
Sound Mix:

Did You Know?

Director John Badham originally intended to shoot the picture in black-and-white to mirror the b&w scenic design of cartoonist Edward Gorey's sets and costumes of the stage play as well as Universal's original monochrome Dracula (1931) movie but the Universal Pictures studio objected. The film utilizes mostly warm and golden colors, black, white and muted greys with only intermittent garish colors, a look and feel that director Badham said was to evoke the romanticism of period pen-and-ink drawings.See more »
Incorrectly regarded as goofs: When undead Lucy approaches Van Helsing in the mines under the graveyard, her reflection is seen in the water. When, two scenes later, Count Dracula comes into Mina's home and walks by a mirror, Van Helsing points out that he did not see Dracula in the mirror. That Lucy does cast a reflection in the water, where she ordinarily should not have, is explainable by the fact that, just before her reflection became visible, Van Helsing had dropped a crucifix into the water. That had the effect of sanctifying the water--of making it holy water, in other words; though they cast no reflections in glass or polished metals, vampires (according to one obscure detail of the superstitions about them) WILL reflect in holy water, which is the only substance capable of showing vestigial remnants of the souls they lost to damnation when they died as living beings.See more »
Count Dracula:Jonathan Harker tells me you speak some Romanian.
Lucy Seward:Well, hardly, I know...
[Dracula says a sentence in Romanian and Lucy smiles]
Count Dracula:There, you do understand.
Lucy Seward:[still smiling] Not really. I have no idea what you said.
Count Dracula:I said it would be nice to see you smile.
Lucy Seward:[pause] Then you should be pleased.
Count Dracula:Oh, I am.
See more »
Movie Connections:
Version of Drácula (1931)See more »


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8 out of 13 people found the following review useful.
Strange approach to an over-worked story. Doesn't work especially well as it prioritises stylishness while neglecting the scares., 22 February 2005
Author: Jonathon Dabell ( from Todmorden, England

Fresh from directing Saturday Night Fever, John Badham here tries to give the Dracula story a stylish makeover. However, in taking this fantastic tale of terror and smearing it with romance, elegance and charm, Badham has stripped the concept of its horror and its spooky atmosphere. Of all the Dracula films ever made, this one might well have the best photography but it also has probably the worst chill factor. I've seen "U" rated movies scarier than this. That probably explains why the film divides critics so much - there are those who rate it highly because of its sumptuous style, while others come away bitterly disappointed as a result of its total disregard for the "horror" side of the story. I must admit I'm not a great fan of this version - I'm a content-over-style man, and this one just doesn't deliver for me.

There's little point going into detail about the plot. Bram Stoker's story has been read and dramatised so many times that everyone knows how it goes. However, this version makes some changes to the source novel (it is based, actually, on a stage play by Balderston and Deane). For instance, Van Helsing is not merely a vampire expert, he is also the father of one of Dracula's earliest victims. Dracula himself is a sexy, charming society-gentleman as opposed to a reclusive, mysterious and creepy figure. These little changes freshen up the plot a little but are not in any other way beneficial to the film.

Performance-wise, the film is variable. Frank Langella plays Dracula quite well (he'd had plenty of practise after performing the role for months on Broadway); Donald Pleasance is great as Dr. Seward; Trevor Eve seems stiff and unconvincing as Jonathan Harker; and Laurence Olivier overacts hideously as Van Helsing. At this point of his career, Olivier was going through a phase of uncontrolled, hammy displays (see The Betsy, Inchon, The Jazz Singer and Clash of the Titans to see what I mean). One has to wonder if someone a little more restrained - say, John Mills or James Mason - might have made a better Van Helsing in 1979. There's great cinematography by Gilbert Taylor, making this a film most assuredly intended for the wide screen, and John Williams adds another memorable score to his list of impeccable film music from the '70s.

Dracula is an OK film, loved by some, detested by others, but it really needed more attention to the frightening aspects. After all, a great-looking horror film is rather a pointless thing if it lacks the ability to spook your mind or jolt you out of your seat.

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Message Boards

Discuss this movie with other users on IMDb message board for Dracula (1979)
Recent Posts (updated daily)User
Blu Ray announced for October 2013! scott-lines
David McCallum ('Ducky') from NCIS? 1xtro
Switching Mina and Lucy's roles alifeatthemovies
Anybody else scared by the undead Mina? dunneboy
does laser disc have color 'drained' as well? jade-85
colour release graemebonny
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