The entertainment industry has explored the world of vampires, Dracula, and even witches. There are a few classic films that stay with us. One of them is Van Helsing starring Hugh Jackman as Dutch monster hunter Van Helsing, and Kate Beckinsale as Anna Valerious. Released in the year 2014, it took the audience by storm. It was something fresh, out-of-the-box concept. The film is a homage and tribute to the Universal Horror Monster films from the 1930s and 1940s.
The eponymous character was inspired by the Dutch vampire hunter Abraham Van Helsing from Irish author Bram Stoker’s novel Dracula.
Plot of Van Helsing
Van Helsing is a 2004 action gothic horror film written and directed by Stephen Sommers. Famed monster slayer Gabriel Van Helsing (Hugh Jackman) is dispatched to Transylvania to assist the last of the Valerious bloodline in defeating Count Dracula. Anna Valerious (Kate Beckinsale) reveals that Dracula has formed an unholy alliance with Dr. Frankenstein’s monster and is hell-bent on exacting a centuries-old curse on her family. Together Anna and Van Helsing set out to destroy their common enemy, but uncover some unsettling secrets along the way.
Cast of the movie Van Helsing
The movie did not do well at the box office despite a star-studded cast. Let us have a look at the cast of Van Helsing.
Hugh Jackman as Abraham “Gabriel” Van Helsing, a legendary hunter of monsters.
Kate Beckinsale as Anna Valerious, the last descendant of an ancient Romanian family.
Richard Roxburgh as Count Vladislaus Dracula, a powerful vampire.
David Wenham as Carl, a friar of the Holy Order.
Shuler Hensley as Frankenstein’s monster
Kevin J. O’Connor as Igor, a servant of Frankenstein’s, now working for Dracula.
Will Kemp as Velkan Valerious, Anna’s brother, who turns into a werewolf.
Elena Anaya as Aleera, the youngest of Dracula’s brides.
Alun Armstrong as Cardinal Jinette, Van Helsing’s superior in the Holy Order.
Silvia Colloca as Verona, the oldest of Dracula’s brides.
Josie Maran as Marishka, the second oldest of Dracula’s brides.
Tom Fisher as Top Hat, a Romanian grave digger.
Samuel West as Victor Frankenstein
Stephen Fisher as Dr. Jekyll
Robbie Coltrane as the voice of Mr. Hyde
Spin offs of Van Helsing
Director Stephen Sommers went on to expand the story of Van Helsing in two parts. There was an animated prequel and another one was a one-shot comic book.
The animated prequel is titled Van Helsing: The London Assignment. The story takes place before the main events of the film. It focuses on the mission of Van Helsing who tries to stop Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde from terrorizing London.
The one-shot comic book is titled Van Helsing: From Beneath the Rue Morgue. Published by Dark Horse Comics, it follows the story of Van Helsing on a self-contained adventure that occurs during the events of the film. It happens after the death of Jekyll/Hyde in Paris but before Van Helsing returns to Rome. In the adventure, Van Helsing deals with Doctor Moreau and his hybrid mutants.
Are there games available for Van Helsing?
Yes, in the year 2012, the Hungarian independent development studio NeocoreGames announced an entry of their new project, The Incredible Adventures of Van Helsing. It was made for PC and the Xbox 360’s Xbox Live Arcade platform. They further went on to announce that the game is planned to be a part of a trilogy.
The plot is based on Bram Stoker’s tale of Count Dracula. It is not set in the same fictional universe as the tale but rather a similar one in a twisted 19th century Europe with “monsters, magic and weird technology”.
In 2014, a sequel The Incredible Adventures of Van Helsing II, was released. It was followed by The Incredible Adventures of Van Helsing III (2015).
Is Van Helsing a true story?
Abraham Van Helsing is a fictional character from Bram Stoker’s gothic horror novel Dracula. He named the character after himself. Stoker’s first name is Abraham, a name he shared with his father. The fact that Stoker chose this name for one of his leading characters suggests a degree of identification with that fictional person. Not only does Van Helsing shares the same first name as Stoker, but they also both have Dutch ancestry.
The real question is “Was Abraham Van Helsing a real person?”
Well, the fact that Bram modeled him on a real person is unverified. While the inspiration for the character is not known, there has been some speculation that he was based on Georg Andreas Helwing. Talking about Helwing, he was a real-life 18th-century Lutheran pastor from Angerburg in what was then the Duchy of Prussia. He studied and wrote about vampires and werewolves.
Some suggest that the character was modeled on Arminius Vambery whom Stoker met in London. He is a learned Hungarian professor. While there are various theories floating around, one cannot conclude that the story or the character is based on true events.
Was Van Helsing a vampire?
According to the official fandom site, he was a polymath Dutch doctor, a vampire hunter, and the original patriarch of the Van Helsing family.
In 2016, Van Helsing series was introduced to the fans. It is a fantasy horror drama television where Kelly Overton plays the titular character of the series. The original network for the series is Syfy. The channel renewed the series for a fifth and final season which premiered on April 16, 2021. There is no sign of Van Helsing Season 6.
The Van Helsing Series cast includes Kelly Overton, Jonathan Scarfe, Christopher Heyerdahl, David Cubitt, Vincent Gale, Rukiya Bernard and Tim Guinee.
If you are a huge fan of vampires and hunters, watch Van Helsing on Netflix.
Action gothic horror
May 7, 2004
Hugh Jackman, Kate Beckinsale, Richard Roxburgh, Shuler Hensley, David Wenham, Elena Anaya, Will Kemp, Kevin J. O'Connor, Alun Armstrong and Silvia Colloca.
Country of Origin
United States, Czech Republic
Countries where available
Argentina, Australia, Belgium, Brazil, Canada, Colombia, Czech Republic, France, Germany, Greece, Hong Kong, Hungary, Iceland, India, Israel, Italy, Japan, Lithuania, Malaysia, Mexico, Netherlands, Philippines, Poland, Portugal, Romania, Russia, Singapore, Slovakia, South Africa, South Korea, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, Thailand, Turkey, Ukraine, United Kingdom, and the United States
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