Writter: Anne Rice (novel and screenplay)
Tom Plays: Lestat de Lioncourt
Status: ON DVD
A vampire tells his epic life story: love, betrayal, loneliness, and hunger.
Incorrectly regarded as goofs: When Santiago walks upside down on the inside of the Paris archway, his cloak continues to hang toward his feet instead of towards the ground.
Continuity: When Claudia cuts her hair she throws the scissors on the ground and storms off into the room. After she screams and storms out of the room she has the scissors in her hand again.
Revealing mistakes: When Louis kisses Widow St. Claire, he gets some lipstick stain on his nose and in the next shot it’s gone.
Miscellaneous: After Lestat kills the tavern woman with Louis’s help and replaces her head on the table, her eyelids move slightly.
Crew or equipment visible: On the Golden Gate Bridge, just as Daniel’s Mustang crashes into the other car, you can clearly see a man in a black hood driving the car.
Continuity: In the Vampire Theatre, Santiago unties the string on the woman’s shirt but just seconds before this it is seen already untied and she moves it to cover herself.
Continuity: When Lestat teaches Louis the rat blood trick, Louis drinks blood from the glass and in the next cut to him the glass is completely clean, showing not even a drop of blood in it.
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Yvette: [to Louis] Are you not hungry sir?
Lestat: Aux contraire moncher, he could eat the whole colony.
[starts to laugh] Louis: [as Yvette starts to pick up Louis’s plate he grabbs her arm and looks at the veins in her neck] I’ll finish it in a minute now leave us.
Yvette: Ummm… Monsieur Louis. You don’t want any supper no?
Louis: No moncher.
Yvette: We’re worried about you, master. Why is it that you don’t go riding in the field? And how long since you’ve been to the slave cot? Everywhere there is death. Are you still our master at all?
Louis: That will be all, Yvette!
Yvette: I will not go unless you listen to me! You must, you must send away this friend of yours. The slaves they are all frightened of him… and they are frightened of you!
[touches Louis’s hand] Louis: I’m frightened of myself.
[Indulges in close contact with Yvette. Then begins to bit her wrist. She starts to scream out. For a moment he is to caught up in bitting her. She cries out lounder and he snapes into reality. He puts his hand over her mouth, wrestles her to the floor and kills her] Louis: [Louis walks outside carrying Yvette’s lifeless body. He speaks to the slaves who have come to see what all the screaming was about] Hear me now! This place is cursed, damned, and yes your master is the devil! Get out while you can! You are all free men! You hear me?
[Louis gives Yvette to a nearby slave and takes hold of a tourch] Louis: Run, flee, save yourselves!
[waves tourch wildly at slaves to make them leave and then goes inside to set house on fire]
Lestat: No one could resist me, not even you, Louis.
Louis: I tried.
Lestat: [smiling] And the more you tried, the more I wanted you.
Lestat: Your body’s dying. Pay no attention, It happens to us all.
Lestat: You are a vampire who never knew what life was until it ran out in a big gush over your lips.
Louis: Where are we?
Lestat: Where do you think, my idiot friend? We’re in a nice, filthy cemetery. Does this make you happy? Is this fitting, proper enough?
Louis: We belong in hell.
Lestat: And what if there is no hell, or they don’t want us there? Ever think of that?
Louis: But there was a hell, and no matter where we moved to, I was in it.
Whore: It’s a coffin.
Lestat: So it is. You must be dead.
Lestat: Mon dieu, what melancholy nonsense. I swear you grow more like Louis each day. Soon you’ll be eating rats!
Claudia: Rats? When did you eat rats Louis?
Louis: It was a long, long time ago. Before you were born, and I don’t recommend them.
Lestat: Evil is a point of view. God kills indiscriminately and so shall we. For no creatures under God are as we are, none so like him as ourselves.
Lestat: LOUIS! Put me in my coffin!
Claudia: I’ll put you in your coffin!
Lestat: Absinthe, absinthe… you’ve given them absinthe?
Claudia: No. Laudanum.
Claudia: Yes. It killed them, unfortunately, but it keeps the blood warm.
Lestat: You? You let me drink… dead blood? You… let me drink… dead blood?
Claudia: One lesson you taught me: never drink from the dead!
Lestat: Louis… Louis! Put me in my coffin. Put me in my coffin!
Claudia: I’ll put you in your coffin!
[slashes Lestat’s throat with a long knife]
Lestat: Evildoers are easier, and they taste better.
Claudia: Which one of you did it? One of you did it! Which on of you made me the way I am?
Lestat: What you are? A vampire gone insane that pollutes its own bed?
Claudia: And if I cut my hair again?
Lestat: It will grow back again.
Claudia: But it wasn’t always so. I had a mother once, and Louis, he had a wife. He was mortal the same as she and so was I.
Claudia: You made us what we are, didn’t you?
Lestat: Stop her, Louis.
Claudia: Did you do it to me?
[slashes Lestat’s face, and it heals immediately] Claudia: How did you do it?
Lestat: Why should I tell you? It’s in my power.
Claudia: Why yours alone? Tell me how it was done.
Lestat: Be glad I made you what you are. You’d be dead now if I hadn’t, just like that damned corpse. Now, get rid of it!
Claudia: You get rid of it.
Lestat: Perfect! Just perfect! Just burn the place! Burn everything we own! Have us sleeping in the field like cattle!
Louis: You thought you could have it all…
Lestat: Oh, shut up,Louis! Mon Dieu! Come here.
Lestat: I’m going to give you the choice I never had.
Lestat: Do we forgive each other then?
Lestat: Don’t be afraid. I’m going to give you the choice I never had.
Lestat: We are predators, Whose all seeing eyes were meant to give them detachment.
Lestat: Merciful death. How you love your precious guilt.
Lestat: It’s your coffin, my love. Enjoy it. Most of us never get to know what it feels like.
Louis: Why do you do this?
Lestat: I like to do it. I enjoy it. Take your aesthete’s; taste purer things; kill them swiftly, if you will, but do it. For do not doubt: you are a killer, Louis.
Lestat: Oh Louis, Louis. Still whining Louis. Have you heard enough? I’ve had to listen to that for centuries.
Lestat: I am afraid, madam, my days are sacrosanct.
Lestat: Lord, what I wouldn’t give for a drop of good old-fashioned Creole blood.[to Malloy] Lestat: I assume I need no introduction.
Louis: Yankees are not to your taste?
Lestat: Their democratic flavor doesn’t suit my palate, Louis.
Lestat: Claudia, you have been a very, very naughty little girl.
Lestat: Listen Louie. There’s life in these old hands still. Not quite Furioso. Moderato? Cantabile, perhaps.[watching a nude prostitute] Lestat: Now that is pure Creole. Trust Claudia to have found her. What, don’t you want her?
Claudia: How can it be?
Lestat: Bless the alligator. His blood helped. Then on the diet of the blood of snakes, toads, and all the putrid life of the Mississippi, slowly, Lestat became something like himself again. Claudia… You’ve been a very, very, naughty little girl.
Claudia: I want to be her.
Lestat: Whining coward of a vampire that prowls the night killing rats and poodles; you could have finished us both.
Louis: You’ve condemned me to Hell.
Lestat: I don’t know any Hell.
Lestat: [dancing around with the corpse of Claudia’s mother] There’s still life in the old lady yet.
Lestat: Should we put out the light? And then put out the light. But once put out thy light, I cannot give it vital breath again. It needs must wither.
Lestat: Have you said your good-byes to the light?
[bites Louis] Lestat: I’ve drained you to the point of death. If I leave you here, you die. Or you can be young always, my friend, as we are now, but you must tell me: will you come or no?
Claudia: Where’s mama?
Lestat: Mama… mama has gone to heaven, ChÃ©rie, like that sweet lady right there. They all go to heaven.
Louis: All but us.
Lestat: Shh. Do you want to frighten our little daughter?
Claudia: I’m not your daughter.
Lestat: Oh, yes, you are. You’re mine and Louis’ daughter now. You see, Louis was going to leave us, he was going to go away, but now he’s not. Now, he’s going to stay and make you happy.
Louis: You fiend.
Lestat: One happy family.
Lestat: You-you let me drink *dead blood*?
Lestat: It’s so easy you almost feel sorry for them. You’ll get used to killing. Just forget about that mortal coil. You’ll become accustomed to it, all too quickly.
Lestat: Claudia… Claudia. Claudia! What have you done?
Claudia: What you told me to do!
Louis: Leave a corpse here to rot?
Claudia: I wanted her. I wanted to be her!
Lestat: [after Claudia kills the piano teacher] Claudia, what have we told you?
Claudia: Never in the house.
Lestat: [to Louis] Feed on what you will. Rats, chickens, poodles, I’ll leave you to it and watch you come around. But just remember, life without me would be even more unbearable.
Lestat: Let’s pretend it’s wine!
Lestat: There’s nothing in the world now that doesn’t hold some sort of…
Lestat: Yes. I’m bored of this crap.
Louis: But if we can live without taking human life? It’s possible.
Lestat: Anything’s possible. Just try it for a week. Come to New Orleans. Let me show you some new sport.
Christina Ricci, Dominique Swain and Erin Moore auditioned for the role of Claudia.
Author Anne Rice wrote the part of Lestat with Rutger Hauer in mind. 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.
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.
Tom Cruise was placed on an elevated platform during some scenes to reduce the height difference between his character and other vampires.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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. Lousi was even given Anne Rice’s birthday of 4 October.
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.
Stephen Rea (Santiago) makes regular appearances in Neil Jordan’s films.
Johnny Depp was offered the role of Lestat.
Evan Rachel Wood auditioned for the role of Claudia.
Heathcote Williams was going to be in this film but was replaced
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 Old Coliseum Theatre in New Orleans, seen when Louis goes to see Tequila Sunrise in 1988, burned down on 3 February 2006.
During the cinema montage sequence (depicting the passage of years) towards the last part of the film, where Louis exalts about being able to “see” the sun for the first time in centuries, the clip of a rooster crowing to indicate the coming of dawn is from the silent vampire film Nosferatu the Vampire.