Interview with the Vampire: The Vampire Chronicles (1994) Poster


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All the actors playing vampires were required to hang upside down for up to thirty minutes at a time during the make-up application. This would force all the blood in their bodies to rush to their heads, causing the blood vessels in their faces to bulge out. The make up artists would then trace over the swollen veins creating the eerie translucent-skinned vampire look. Unfortunately for the actors, they would have to repeat the process several times over, as the blood would quickly drain from their heads. This, in part, accounts for the lengthy make-up process.
Tom Cruise wanted a private set, and hence tunnels were built to escort the actors to and from the set. This was done so that the vampire's makeup effects would remain a secret.
In the book, the reason why Louis becomes depressed in the beginning of the movie is because he feels guilty about the death of his brother; not because he had a wife and child that died. In fact, he never had a wife in the book version.
Christian Slater was given the role of Daniel, upon the death of River Phoenix, who was originally supposed to be Daniel. Slater donated his $250,000 salary to two of Phoenix' favorite charities.
In an article released in September 2011, Brad Pitt revealed that he had a miserable experience while making this film. He complained of discomfort while wearing his costumes and colored contacts and being forced to play second fiddle to Tom Cruise, both on screen and off. He said at one point he called his friend and producer David Geffen and begged him for a way out. Learning that there was no way, he toughed it out for the remaining months.
The first film production to be given permission to close down two lanes of traffic on the Golden Gate Bridge.
Kirsten Dunst shared her first on-screen kiss in this film with Brad Pitt, even though there was an 18-year age difference between them. In a subsequent interview, she revealed the scene had made her uncomfortable. She remarked: "I thought it was gross, that Brad had cooties. I mean, I was 12."
Author Anne Rice wrote the original part of Lestat for the 1976 novel with Rutger Hauer in mind. The rights to the novel were optioned by Paramount for $150,000 before the book was first published. John Travolta was then earmarked to play Lestat but Dracula (1979), Nosferatu the Vampyre (1979), and Love at First Bite (1979) put the project into turnaround. By the time a movie was to be filmed, Hauer and Travolta had become too old to portray the ever-young vampire. Upon learning that Tom Cruise had been cast, she was quite disappointed and expressed concern that Cruise could not carry the part. After attending a screening, Rice wrote a letter of apology, quite pleased with Cruise's portrayal. Ironically, Rutger Hauer would later portray a vampire in Buffy the Vampire Slayer (1992).
Johnny Depp was offered the role of Lestat.
Although the screen credits read "Screenplay by Anne Rice based on her novel", the script was actually heavily rewritten by director Neil Jordan. Writers Guild rules meant that Rice got credit.
Author Anne Rice was so pleased with this adaptation that she took out a two page ad in both Vanity Fair and the New York Times endorsing it as "a masterpiece".
The character Louis' full name is Louis de Pointe du Lac. Louis was based on Anne Rice as she grieved for her deceased daughter, Michelle. Louis was even given Anne Rice's birthday of 4 October.
Louis describes Claudia as five years old in the novel, but Kirsten Dunst was 12 years old at the time of filming.
In the trailer, Lestat says to Louis, "You're a vampire who never knew what life was until it ran out in a red gush over your lips" as he takes the goblet with the trollop's blood to Louis. For some reason, this line was cut from the film.
Tom Cruise was placed on an elevated platform during some scenes to reduce the height difference between his character and other vampires.
Stephen Rea studied French comedy and pantomime to prepare for his role as Santiago. The scene in which he dances up the tunnel wall and ceiling was inspired by Fred Astaire's famous scene in Royal Wedding (1951).
The character Lestat's full name is Lestat de Lioncourt. He was based on Anne Rice's husband Stan Rice, and even given Stan Rice's birthday of 7 November.
Christina Ricci, Dominique Swain, Julia Stiles, Erin Moore and Evan Rachel Wood auditioned for the role of Claudia.
Author Anne Rice met with Tom Hanks to take the part of Lestat after seeing his performance in Philadelphia (1993), but Hanks turned down the part in order to star in Forrest Gump (1994).
The estate of Louis (Brad Pitt) in the beginning of the film was the historic Oak Alley Plantation located on the Mississippi River in Vacherie, Louisiana, which is near New Orleans. The plantation's "guest book" is on display and was signed by Pitt and Tom Cruise.
Kirsten Dunst lost out on an award as Best Supporting Actress at the Chlotrudis Awards for her performance in this movie and also for Little Women (1994). She lost by a single vote, given to Dianne Wiest in Bullets Over Broadway (1994).
Tom Cruise prepped for the role of Lestat by watching videos of lions attacking zebras in the wild.
The scenes set on the riverfront in New Orleans (including the infamous "Chat Noir") were filmed on a false front built on the levee downriver from the actual French Quarter. The entire set was constructed around the old section of Jackson Barracks, a National Guard post.
Many buildings and street lights were darkened for the filming by agreement with the companies and the city. The set was immediately torn down after the filming.
There's a scene towards the end of the movie where Louis is watching Superman (1978) in a cinema. This scene doesn't appear in the novel because the book was written in 1976, two years before the film was made.
Louis claims not to be broody in the novel, but he is in the film; allegedly Brad Pitt didn't have a happy time making the film.
Jeremy Irons turned down the part of Lestat as he didn't want to play another character that required hours in the make-up chair, coming off the back of The House of the Spirits (1993).
A gay subtext to the novel was omitted from the film; Lestat expects Louis to sleep with him; Lestat, Louis (and later Claudia) are a family. Anne Rice mentions "stone walls" in the novel, which could be an oblique reference to the gay rights movement of the same name.
Although the reporter gets a name in the film (Daniel Malloy), in the novel he's just known as "the boy"; he was also younger than Christian Slater. The book also refers to Louis as "the vampire" in the interview scenes.
Tom Cruise spent 3 and a half hours every day in the make-up chair.
The novel was written in 1976; by 1993 it was reprinted 48 times.
Kirsten Dunst later starred in the music video 'I Knew I Loved You' by Savage Garden, a band which took its name from the same Anne Rice novel series.
The Old Coliseum Theatre in New Orleans, seen when Louis goes to see Tequila Sunrise (1988) in 1988, burned down on 3 February 2006.
Louis is 200 years old in the film, but in the novel he's 185 years old. The age difference was to tie in with when the film was set.
At one point in development, the role of Louis was re-written to be a female character and Cher and Anjelica Huston were considered to play this role.
John Malkovich, Peter Weller, Alexander Godunov and Brad Pitt were considered for the role of Lestat at various points of development.
Christian Slater had to have his shooting schedule for Murder in the First (1995) be reworked to allow him to appear in the film.
When LeStat and Louie are arguing at Louie's plantation, Louie says the help watch them eat from empty plates and drink from empty glasses. They only did that in the book in order to fool LeStat's blind father. They never would have bothered to do that otherwise.
Stephen Dorff was considered for the role of Daniel Malloy before Christian Slater was cast. Both would go on to co-star in Uwe Boll's video game adaptation, Alone in the Dark (2005).
Neil Jordan retained final cut on the film.
The river scenes were done by removing such modern items as the Greater New Orleans Bridge and radio towers and replacing them with 18th century sailing vessels in post-production. The sailing vessels on the set were Alexandria and Gazela.
Would be the highest grossing vampire movie for over a decade, however, as of 2016, it's the highest grossing R rated vampire film of all time.
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Oprah Winfrey stormed out of the premiere during the first reel, disgusted by the amount of blood in the film.
While the production was filming in London, Brad Pitt stayed in a house which used to be owned by Peter Cushing.
Title is often misquoted as Interview with A Vampire.
Claudia cries tears of blood in the novel; the vampires in True Blood (2008) can do the same.
Thandie Newton and Tom Cruise also appear together in Mission: Impossible II (2000).
First cinema feature of Helen McCrory.
Anne Rice mentions Marie Antoinette in the novel; Kirsten Dunst later played her in the film of the same name.
Lestat hires a painter to decorate Claudia's room with unicorns; this hearkens back to Tom Cruise's role in the fantasy film Legend (1985).
Natalie Portman auditioned for the role that went to Kirsten Dunst.
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Due to Anne Rice's fear that her novel was not being adapted because Lestat and Louis could be perceived as homosexuals, at one point she rewrote Louis as a woman, and considered Cher for the role. While eventually the role went back to being a man, Cher would write along with Shirley Eikhard a song for the movie's soundtrack, "Lovers Forever", that wound rejected by the producers and eventually released on Cher's 2013 album "Closer to the Truth".
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When Lestat dances with the corpse of Claudia's mother, he says "there's still life in the old lady yet". He never says this in the novel.
In 1978, John Boorman was planning to direct. He intended for Jon Voight to star as Lestat.
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Antonio Banderas previously auditioned for the role of Dracula in Bram Stoker's Dracula (1992).
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After Claudia drinks blood for the first time, she says she wants some more twice in the film, but only says it once in the novel.
Tom Cruise and Brad Pitt appear to have swapped their complexions in this film, as Cruise has blonde hair and Pitt has black hair. In real life, Cruise has black hair and Pitt has blonde hair.
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Heathcote Williams was going to be in this film but was replaced
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Although Tom Hanks who starred in Philadelphia (1993) didn't star as Lestat in this film, his Philadelphia co-star Antonio Banderas co-starred in this film as Armand.
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Tom Cruise (Lestat) and Antonio Banderas (Armand) never actually met during the film. However, towards the end of the original novel, there was a scene in which both characters have a conversation.
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Although the film's tagline "Drink from me and live forever" is never said by any character on the film, it would eventually be used in the chorus of the 1996 song "Transylvania" by the Japanese band Malize Mizer ("Drink from me and live forever" is the only phrase said in English during the lyrics of the song, whereas the rest of the lyrics are sung in Japanese).
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Kirsten Dunst co-stars with Tom Cruise in this film. Dunst went on to co-star with Robin Williams in Jumanji (1995). Cruise and Williams have both co-starred with Dustin Hoffman; Rain Man (1988) and Hook (1991) respectively.
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Tom Cruise co-starred with Dustin Hoffman in Rain Man (1988). Brad Pitt would go on to co-star with Hoffman in Sleepers (1996). Incidentally, both films were directed by Barry Levinson.
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Director Trademark 

Neil Jordan: [Stephen Rea] Rea, who plays Santiago, makes regular appearances in Jordan's films.


The trivia items below may give away important plot points.

It is stated in the books that the vampires (according to Anne Rice) shed blood tears, as all their body fluids are replaced with blood. In the film, however (e.g. when Louis remembers Claudia's death), they are normal human tears.
An animatronic Lestat was used during the shot where Lestat is bleeding on the floor, after having had his throat cut by Claudia.
The original novel includes a scene where Lestat appears in the tunnels under the Theater des Vampires in Paris, to confront Louis immediately after Claudia's death. This scene was filmed with Tom Cruise and Brad Pitt, but was cut from the final film.
Body count: 36.
The car that Malloy (Christian Slater) drives at the end in is a 1965 Ford Mustang.
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