RISING Scots actor Gerry Butler is to star as Count Dracula in a new pounds 15million movie.
Master of horror Wes Craven – director of Nightmare on Elm Street and the Scream trilogy – is behind the Hollywood remake.
The role is a major break for 30-year-old Butler, from Paisley, who was a late starter on the acting scene.
He gave up on a possible career in law just a week before he would have qualified.
Butler explained: “I took an honours degree at Glasgow University.
“Just before I was about to qualify, I gave it all up to become an actor. I just thought, ‘I really don’t want to do this for the rest of my life.’
“So, I took myself off to London and, after a meeting with Shakespearean actor Steven Berkoff in a coffee shop, I auditioned and was cast by him in Coriolanus.
“I have been pretty lucky, landing some great roles with beautiful actresses.
“My family and friends thought I was mad giving up a career in law, but now they couldn’t be happier.”
But his relatively late introduction to acting has not stopped him from landing roles in an impressive list of films.
He played Billy Connolly’s brother in the award-winning Mrs Brown and was also in the Bond picture Tomorrow Never Dies.
The new Dracula film is a retelling in a modern setting of Bram Stoker’s classic novel.
Butler follows in the footsteps of such famous Dracula actors as Gary Oldman, who played the role in 1992, Christopher Lee, who starred in a series of Dracula films from 1970 to 1975, and Bela Lugosi, the 1931 movie star.
The new movie sees Christopher Plummer co- starring as vampire hunter Abraham Van Helsing, with Trainspotting’s Jonny Lee Miller as his assistant.