There's something about vampires. Whether they sparkle or not, whether they're reformed or not, for the past half-century or so they've been sexing up the big screen on a fairly consistent basis. The latest is Colin Farrell in Fright Night, sinking his teeth into a role that's completely free of Catholic guilt and brimming with chances to smoulder. Even actors who aren’t usually all that hot become an average of 37 percent (we measured) more attractive when given fangs (see also: TV’s True Blue, The Vampire Diaries, Buffy the Vampire Slayer). Here are just a few of Hollywood’s most memorable vamp lovers…
*The Vampire: Count Dracula
**The Actor*: Bela Lugosi
Following the highly unofficial Nosferatu, Hollywood finally got into the Dracula game in 1931 with this instant success. A large part of that was down to Lugosi, a tall and imposing figure who cuts a natty figure in his tailcoat. He could be, in fact, the original medallion man with that little ribbon around his neck – and then there’s the whole looming-over-swooning-maidens thing, which always works for a vampire.
*Strengths:* Tall, dark and handsome; attractive foreign accent; high social status; natty dresser; can turn into a bat or wolf, which could be…handy? Somehow?
*Weaknesses:* Not cool with crucifixes, so may not be the right man for Christians or Goths; dislikes sunlight; allergic to stakes through the heart.
*Likelihood he’ll kill you:* 9/10 – unless you run when he’s posing.
*The Vampire: Count Dracula
**The Actor*: Christopher Lee
Christopher Lee may go bearded in most films these days, exuding world-weary wisdom rather than sex appeal, but back in 1958 it was a whole other story. The towering Lee and his deep bass voice made for the most openly sexy Dracula we’ve ever seen – sorry, Mr Oldman. No apologies to you, Mr Butler; you should’ve tried harder. No wonder he had all the big-haired, precipitously-clad Hammer girls in his thrall; no wonder he pioneered something of a rebirth in vampire popularity. Opera cloaks rarely seemed so trendy.
*Strengths:* VERY tall, dark and handsome; attractive deep voice; that foreign accent again; looks good with bloodied lips; natty dresser.
*Weaknesses:* Crosses; sunlight; Peter Cushing.
*Likelihood he’ll kill you:* 9/10 – Do. Not. Mess.
*The Vampire: Miriam Blaylock
**The Actor*: Catherine Deneuve
The good news is that vampire Miriam Blaylock looks and sounds like Catherine Deneuve, which instantly makes her one of the sexiest beings ever to have walked the face of the Earth. And the even better news is that she’s not too particular, gender-wise, about who she hooks up with – as long as they’re talented and interesting and gorgeous. The bad news? Even if she keeps you instead of eating you, you’ll only last a couple of hundred years before you decay and die horribly. Still, it might be worth it.
*Strengths:* French; looks and sounds like Catherine Deneuve; heck of a musician; good taste in music (likes Bowie).
*Weaknesses: Kind of a callous bitch; may be vulnerable to the ingestion of her own blood; leaves vengeful mummy-types lying around in the attic. Which is gross*.
*Likelihood she’ll kill you:* 8/10 – that air of sophistication is just a cover.
*The Vampire: Jerry Dandridge
**The Actor*: Chris Sarandon
The original version of this comedy/horror had Chris Sarandon (who crops up in a brief roadside cameo in the remake) as the vampire next door, somehow managing to project sex appeal despite '80s hair, a fondness for casual sportswear and a more than passing resemblance to The Princess Bride’s Prince Humperdinck. Maybe it’s his habit of settling his victims in front of a roaring fire and seducing them slowly before he bites them?
*Strengths: *Has a fine head of hair; doesn’t mind girls with bad perms; is urbane and reasonable; can turn into a bat.
*Weaknesses:* Dislikes being stabbed with pencils; not fond of sunlight; vulnerable to large amounts of explosive; is a warthog-faced buffoon.
*Likelihood he’ll kill you:* 8/10 – especially if you’re a pretty young thing.
*The Vampire: Severen
**The Actor*: Bill Paxton
Well, everyone loves a bad boy, don’t they? Halfway between biker and cowboy, Severen’s a gleeful, fun-lovin’ vampire – not one of these mopey, existential types – who revels in the whole killing, blood-sucking stuff. He also gets to hang out with Lance Henriksen, which is a bonus, and drive around the Midwest in a blacked-out van that appears to be in violation of a number of traffic laws. Also, he's a nice blue-collar alternative to all these poncy aristo vampires, so probably doesn't hold his pinkie out when he's sucking your blood.
*Strengths:* Carefree attitude to life; cool friends; more casual attire than most of his vampire contemporaries.
*Weaknesses:* Sunlight; trucks.
*Likelihood he’ll kill you:* 8/10 – if you see him, slope away quietly.
*The Vampire: David
**The Actor*: Kiefer Sutherland
Continuing the bad boy theme, David here is a gang leader and youth delinquent who rocks a mullet and some distinctly '80s fashions, but somehow it works for him. Yes, despite the bleached hair and washed-out skin and dubious living arrangements. We’d blame the motorbike, but he’s probably exercising mind-control of some sort on us, only instead of turning our dinner into maggots he’s turned himself into a total hottie.
*Strengths:* Daredevil attitude to life and love of stunts; natural and charismatic leader; man enough to dress like that and still grow up to be Jack Bauer
*Weaknesses: *Sunlight; neon-clad comic-book obsessive siblings; deer antlers.
*Likelihood he’ll kill you:* 7/10 – he might choose to turn you instead, just for badness
*The Vampire: A Bride Of Dracula
**The Actor*: Monica Bellucci
Poor Keanu Reeves. There he is, working hard on his English accent and trying not to slouch in that frock coat, and he keeps getting distracted by vampires. But which one's the most attractive? We’re ruling the normally eligible Gary Oldman out here – because of that gigantic bum hair-do and those Lennon glasses – in favour of Dracula’s Bride, Monica Bellucci. We trust that we don’t need to explain that decision any further. For further evidence we refer you to any photo ever taken of Ms Bellucci.
*Strengths:* Body to die for, face to kill for; boobies.
*Weaknesses:* Sunlight; stakes; Keanu Reeves
*Likelihood she’ll kill you:* 7/10 – she looks hungry
*The Vampire: Satánico Pandemónium
**The Actor*: Salma Hayek
Shooting fish in a barrel, this one. So it’s Salma Hayek, and she’s only wearing a bikini, and she’s got a giant snake around her neck, which we’re pretty sure is symbolic of something or other (rope maybe?). No wonder George Clooney and Quentin Tarantino are sufficiently distracted to completely lose track when things begin to go horribly wrong in the bar around them.
*Strengths:* Wears a bikini; gifted at snake handling; we’re pretty sure she did a bit of dancing in there as well, although we don’t quite remember clearly through the haze.
*Weaknesses:* Sunlight; a distinct fondness for lipliner that's darker than her lipstick; mirrorballs.
*Likelihood she’ll kill you:* 5/10 – but you might beg her to.
*The Vampire: Lestat
**The Actor*: Tom Cruise
Why Cruise over his equally dishy co-stars (Brad Pitt, Antonio Banderas, er, Stephen Rea)? Well, Tom Cruise had done boyishly attractive before this, but this is the first time he’d really gone for all-out slinky. It’s the sheer novelty then, the all-American star revealing an unguessed at capacity for irony and snark along with the feline seductiveness and ruthlessness of the character. Maybe they’re right: blondes do have more fun.
*Strengths:* Nuzzling prostitutes; living it up; hiding his existential angst beneath of veneer of cool; choosing really beautiful people to hang out with.
*Weaknesses:* Brad Pitt; Kirsten Dunst; young boys whose blood has been laced with poison; rock music
*Likelihood he’ll kill you:* 4/10 – as long as you amuse him, you’ll be fine. Also, the sequels suggest that he actually only kills bad people, so examine your conscience and figure it out.
*The Vampire: Blade
**The Actor*: Wesley Snipes
All of their strengths, none of their weaknesses – and he looks natty in a leather coat. From his innovative way with firearms to his martial arts, Blade has it all, and the good news is that he (probably) won’t even suck your blood and totally kill you, since he’s on the side of the angels. He also drives a really cool car and hangs with Kris Kristofferson, both of which are high recommendations. Admittedly, he doesn't have quite such good taste in shirts as bad guy Deacon Frost (Stephen Dorff), but he has a much better haircut than Frost's weird spiky thing.
*Strengths:* Nifty weaponry; a barely concealed and constantly bubbling sense of rage; extremely sharp clothing and haircuts.
*Weaknesses:* Blood lust; the IRS.
*Likelihood he’ll kill you:* 2/10 – unless you’re a familiar.
The Vampire: Selene
The Actor: Kate Beckinsale
What is it with men? You show them a perfectly-shaped backside in a pair of impossibly tight leather trousers, top it off with a corset and they all start stammering a lot and shifting about in their seat. At least, that’s what happened in Underworld when Kate Beckinsale was poured into her surely-constricting werewolf-killing ensemble. Sure, Selene shows almost no interest in the opposite sex, obsessed as she is with her centuries-old quest of hunting down and killing lycans, but if she ever does she'll be fighting them off with a stick high-powered pair of handguns loaded with silver bullets.
Strengths: More flexible than her costume might suggest; handy with handguns; hangs out with Bill Nighy.
Weaknesses: Sunlight; an inability to spot treachery a mile away; Scott Speedman; vulnerable to running out of talcum powder.
Likelihood she’ll kill you: 1/10 – unless you’re a werewolf.
*The Vampire: Edward Cullen
**The Actor*: Robert Pattinson
A vegetarian vampire! One with a conscience, and instead of bursting into fire in sunlight (never ideal for your insurance rates) he just sparkles. He’s a vampire mirrorball! Think of the party opportunities if you switch on a black light! Oh, also, he’s all handsome and devoted and fond of poetry and music and hanging out in flowery mountain meadows and all that stuff. He dresses well and his family owns a swanky modern house and an island in Brazil and he's old-fashioned and polite. He’s every girl’s gay best friend forever, if said GBFF was straight and a vampire.
*Strengths:* Is psychic, so can tell exactly what you want; superhuman strength and reflexes; very self-controlled and unlikely to horribly murderise you.
*Weaknesses:* A bit wet; a one-woman man (and you’re not Bella); how lame is sparkling? Dracula would eat him for breakfast.
*Likelihood he’ll kill you:* 0/10