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BeitragVerfasst: 07.07.2017, 18:18 
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Ein Interview mit generellem Lob an die Schauspieler:

Zitat:
Warren Ellis on Castlevania, the Legacy of Hammer Horror, and the Creative Liberation of Writing for Netflix
By Toussaint Egan | July 7, 2017 | 10:00am


After nearly a decade in production, Frederator Studio’s animated Castlevania series has finally been released, and lo and behold it is awesome. Initially conceived in 2007 as an 80-minute straight-to-DVD feature before resurfacing this year as a limited streaming series courtesy of Netflix, the four-episode first season follows the life of the whip-wielding vampire hunter Trevor Belmont and his unerring quest to fight back the legions of hell and deliver the world from the clutches of the immortal Count Dracula.

The Castlevania franchise has cast a profound influence over the world of videogames since its debut on the Nintendo Famicon system in 1986, with its very name combined with Nintendo’s Metroid series to create a portmanteau shorthand for an entire successive subgenre of action-adventure games set in impossible, labyrinthine spaces. The series’ earliest installments such as Castlevania III: Dracula’s Curse, the animated series’s basis, and Castlevania: Symphony of The Night are master classes in economical game design, pushing players through hellish gauntlets and colossal boss fights set in gothic victorian corridors long before titles like Dark Souls and Bloodborne became synonymous for such qualities. Despite the series’ occasional stumbles, Castlevania is an enduring staple of videogame royalty and its animated series is cause for celebration for fans and newcomers alike.

Who better to pen the Castlevania series than Warren Ellis, whose illustrious tenure has sired some of the most inimitable and genre-savvy writing in popular fiction to date. Known for his work on series including Hellblazer, Red, Transmetropolitan, and Injection, not to mention his screenwriting credits on the 2008 survival-horror game Dead Space, Ellis has shown himself to be a maven of thoughtfully-driven macabre. Paste had the opportunity to correspond with Ellis over email to discuss his ties to Castlevania, how he first became involved with the series’ production, and what future installments in the series might explore.

Paste: Having written for several videogames in the past (2005’s Cold Winter, 2008’s Dead Space), and presumably being a gamer yourself, how and when did you first encounter the Castlevania series? What was it that first attracted you to it?

Warren Ellis: Actually, I’m not a gamer! And the awful truth is that I’ve never played or even seen the game. Terrible, isn’t it? When I was first contacted about Castlevania, some 10 years ago, I went to the internet to look it up, and what immediately struck me was how it initially appeared, to me, at least, to be a Japanese transposition of the Hammer Horror films I grew up with and loved. I’m sure that’s a completely wrong-headed perception, by the way, but that’s how it hit me, and how I realized I could write a medieval horror fiction while obeying the ground rules of the work being adapted.

Paste: Back in 2007, you talked about the challenge and potential inherent in writing for an 80-minute film. Establishing plot beats, realistic characters, “killing your darlings,” etc. How has the migration to Netflix benefited or complicated the process of writing Castlevania?

Ellis: I spent a few weeks wishing I still had some hair to pull out. Netflix responded so strongly to the 2007 screenplay that I felt like I couldn’t change it too much for the four-episode season, and also, of course, it’s the version signed off on by the rights holders, the one that obeys the original material. So there was a lot of surgery, scenes thrown out, finding episode breaks, wishing death on my 2007 self, etc.

Paste: In the past you’ve talked about how much you wanted your version of Castlevania to be as true to the dark, hyper-violent aesthetic of its source material. Has that changed at all in this latest incarnation? Will we or will we not get to see people getting whipped to death with Devo playing in the background?

Ellis: No Devo, I’m afraid. Though we do whip it. But we do have the magnificent Trevor Morris doing the music, thank god. It’s pretty violent, I think? Within the boundaries of the original material, of course, which I don’t think of as being super-violent. But I might be the wrong person to ask, since in the last issue of my comics series Injection I did three pages of some poor bastard having his guts torn out through his pelvis by ghosts. It’s all relative.

More importantly, for me, [is that] I have great actors, and I try hard to serve them well. And I have a great director and animation team, and try to give them beautiful and lunatic things to make.

Paste: The world of 2017 is very different place than the world of 2007, particularly with the rise of video streaming services and on-demand binge watching. Just as direct-to-DVD releases were a creatively-liberating force, how do you feel streaming services have facilitated creators like yourself to craft the best version of their stories? What can you do now in 2017 that you couldn’t do in 2007?

Ellis: The way we’ve structured this project actually lets us do both sides of the affordance of streaming. Our first four episodes are really kind of a compressed, headlong experience, but the liberation from hard and fast run-times means we can take a minute here, two minutes there, and let each beat of the story breathe, visually, in a satisfying way. Not being locked into a strict container of time is probably the biggest and most important change that streaming services have ushered in, and I think it’s a huge change for the better. In 2007, we would have been locked into an 80-minute runtime, I believe, and while we could have done it, I think the 2017 edition is the best version of that story.

Paste: Without getting into specifics, were the series to continue, what sort of stories and characters would you like to explore in future installments?

Ellis:I keep thinking of it as two seasons, but it’s really just one, split into two unequal parts. I think we’re allowed to say that? So I’ve written what I think of as Season Two already, which is where I move away from the source material somewhat, stretch my legs, and probably get a little eccentric in places. “Season 1, Part 1” is telling the story we originally showed up to tell 10 years ago. “Part 2” is where I take more advantage of being on Netflix, I think.

Castlevania begins streaming on Netflix on July 7.


https://www.pastemagazine.com/articles/2017/07/warren-ellis-on-castlevania-the-legacy-of-hammer-h.html

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BeitragVerfasst: 07.07.2017, 18:28 
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Adi Shankar in einem Interview zum Cast:

https://soundcloud.com/down-and-nerdy-podcast/episode-170-an-interview-with-adi-shankar-from-netflixs-castlevania

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BeitragVerfasst: 08.07.2017, 19:07 
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Wow, es gab eine Audition: :shock:

Zitat:

[Interview] How Netflix’s ‘Castlevania’ Series Found Fresh Blood in a Video Game Classic


by Daniel Kurland
July 7, 2017

We sink our teeth into Netflix’s exciting “Castlevania” adaptation with their executive producer, Adi Shankar

Netflix has done a consistently impressive job at curating a programming slate that truly offers up something for everyone. The streaming service has established tentpole original programs which gave the service credibility. They’ve resurrected formerly cancelled shows and given them new life. Netflix has also shown a keen, savvy eye in identifying unique programs from foreign markets and bringing them Stateside and showing them a whole new audience in the process. Netflix’s latest series shows the platform extending their reach into the video game market with “Castlevania” being their first adaptation of a popular video game franchise.

Ever since the debut of the Castlevania games in 1986, Konami’s demon hunting action-adventure series has been a bona fide hit. Now the franchise has spawned over two dozen titles and is still one of the most beloved properties on the market. With Konami’s series making the exciting transition over to television, we had the luxury of talking with the Netflix series’ executive producer, Adi Shankar, about why Castlevania was ripe for adaptation, which is his favorite title from the series, and his mission to finally give video games successful adaptations.

CINEMA RUNNER: What is it about the Castlevania series that you thought was so fascinating and ripe for adaptation?

ADI SHANKAR: The mythology of Castlevania is just so deep and rich. It also spans a lot of time. These days, with movies, you see a lot of people trying to force franchises into existence. Nowadays before a movie even comes out you’ll see that they’ve already got like a million sequels planned. That can be frustrating to see at times when there are properties like Castlevania that actually have an expansive franchise built into it.

CINEMA RUNNER: Absolutely! That’s why there’s been over 20 Castlevania games at this point and they’re all spanning different centuries and looking at various Belmonts.

ADI SHANKAR: It’s what I love about it.

CINEMA RUNNER: You also have such a history of doing exciting things with really dark characters, whether it’s Venom, the Punisher, or Judge Dredd. Dracula and the Castlevania carry that same sort of tone.

ADI SHANKAR: Totally. More so than a hard-R Mega Man, for instance.

CINEMA RUNNER: Although I’d still love to see that.

ADI SHANKAR: I think I’ve chilled out a lot over the past few years and gotten rid of my mid-20s angst. These dark characters just appeal to me and this world felt like a bit of a progression of all of that.

CINEMA RUNNER: This adaptation of Castlevania seems to be pulling a lot from Castlevania III: Dracula’s Curse. Is that your favorite title from the series, or which are the big ones for you?

ADI SHANKAR: You know it’s kind of a cliché answer at this point, but it’s got to be Symphony of the Night!

CINEMA RUNNER: Of course!

ADI SHANKAR: But you’ve also got to look at things from the perspective that I’m 32, so I’m from that PS1 generation. I think that especially with games, what end up being people’s favorites are the titles that you were playing sort of before you had opinions of your own. But Symphony all the way!

CINEMA RUNNER: Was animation always the route that you wanted to go for this project?

ADI SHANKAR: Oh absolutely and not just animation, but animation in this style. Literally, what you’re seeing on screen is exactly what was intended to be done. I was approached about a live-action Castlevania back when the first Dredd movie came out, but this is the way to do it, in my opinion. As a fan of the franchise, the mythology, and video games in general, this is what I wanted to see.

CINEMA RUNNER: Talk a little about the casting process and how these actors came to occupy these roles?

ADI SHANKAR: Everyone auditioned and just brought it. It’s a weird thing with animation—I grew up outside of America, in Hong Kong, where there was adult animation on television. So it was weird to me when I came to America and was watching some anime and got made fun of. I was like, “Wow, this isn’t cool here?”

CINEMA RUNNER: Yeah, there was such a weird stigma towards it for a while—almost the same with comics—that thankfully is gone now.

ADI SHANKAR: As an outsider, I understand the hesitance to embrace. I mean animation goes against the whole idea of the star system being established to try and sell you a product, right? So I understand that there was an ecosystem in place that has been decimated, but what’s emerging from the rubble is people saying that they do like this stuff and there is a market for it. People are organically deciding what they want to see and what they like.

CINEMA RUNNER: Warren Ellis is such a wonderful writer. How did he come to be involved with this series?

ADI SHANKAR: What’s amazing about Warren Ellis is that he was one of my biggest influences. That’s what’s been so satisfying about all of this; getting to work with idols of mine like that. I have another project that’s been shot and finished that’d going to be released in a few months, and even that has someone that’s involved that’s such an icon for my generation. I’m so, so grateful. It’s what great about being an artist.

CINEMA RUNNER: Obviously the Castlevania video game itself is an influence on the TV show, but are there any other significant influences or sources of inspiration for what you’re doing in the series?

ADI SHANKAR: Oh absolutely, The Fast and the Furious franchise, no doubt. They just have so much character development, feature a great actor that doesn’t offer up any vulnerability, unbelievable stunts that don’t make any sense…No, I’m being totally facetious here. There’s none of those movies in “Castlevania”.

CINEMA RUNNER: Was there anything from out of the Castlevania games that you wanted to fit into the show but couldn’t figure out a way to work in?

ADI SHANKAR: Well, let’s remember that this is just season one. And not only has season two already been greenlit, but the episode order has been doubled to eight episodes. So the chapter definitely hasn’t fully closed on this story.

CINEMA RUNNER: On that note, why the decision to use a four-episode limited series approach for “Castlevania”? Was it a result of going the animation route, or did you just want to keep things shorter and more boiled down?

ADI SHANKAR: I’m genuinely not sure…The truth of the matter is that there was an easier way that this could have been done, even with animation. But this show is hand-drawn. They don’t do that anymore. Everything’s moved to CG. It’s gotten to the point that even when Kevin [Kolde] and I were having meetings with animation companies, the feedback that we kept getting was great, but there’s just not a lot of 2D animators left out there. It’s become an antiquated art form, which is so sad. I mean sure, Pixar and Dreamworks are dope, but that doesn’t mean that 2D stuff has to disappear. So we had to like set up the infrastructure to even do something like this.

CINEMA RUNNER: And I mean hand-drawn animation is so perfect for the gothic aesthetic of Castelvania. Something slicker would probably feel artificial to some extent.

ADI SHANKAR: I think so, too.

CINEMA RUNNER: After tackling something like Castlevania, are there any other video game series that you’re eager to adapt next? I saw that Assassin’s Creed is going to be next on your plate, which is super exciting, but what else do you have your eye on?

ADI SHANKAR: This isn’t a cop out, but there are just so many. That’s the honest truth. This is an entire genre that’s been either ignored or neglected for literally decades. You know, you’re going all the way back to Super Mario Bros. There just hasn’t been a good video game adaptation, period. And I’m not trying to diss the people from the past that have made these movies.

CINEMA RUNNER: No, of course, and none of these have been given the medium of a serialized television show, which is really needed to do a lot of these worlds justice.

ADI SHANKAR: Exactly. So there’s almost like an endless vault of possible titles. I’m thinking about this stuff all of the time though and only going to work on titles that I’m deeply passionate about and in love with. That’s just who I am.

CINEMA RUNNER: Do you have any sort of multi-season arc for this show or an idea of how long it might go on for? Is it two seasons and done, or is a much bigger story happening here?

ADI SHANKAR: You’re going to have to wait and see on that one.

CINEMA RUNNER: Lastly, what are you most excited for people to see in your adaptation of Castlevania?

ADI SHANKAR: I’m just excited for them to see it, period. It’s finally here. It’s weird even talking about it, like I’m waiting for someone to pinch me because the whole experience has been such a dream.

‘’Castlevania’s’’ entire first season premieres July 7th on Netflix


http://www.cinemarunner.com/2017/07/07/interview-netflixs-castlevania-series-found-fresh-blood-video-game-classic/

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BeitragVerfasst: 09.07.2017, 13:53 
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Laudine hat geschrieben:
Wow, es gab eine Audition: :shock:


Ist schon krass, oder? Irgendwie würdigt man diese Projekte nicht so wie man es sollte. Ich hatte mir vor einer Weile mal ein Making Of zu einem PS 4 Spiel angesehen und war ganz überrascht zu erfahren, dass die Figuren mittlerweile durch Motion Capture (also wie beim Hobbit) dargestellt werden und nicht mehr einfach nur computeranimiert sind. Außerdem werden für solche Projekte richtig Schauspieler gecastet, genau wie für Kinofilme, Serien, usw.. Mittlerweile sind Animationsprojekte wie eben Castlevania und viele gute Computerspiele rein schauspielerisch absolut vergleichbar mit dem was uns normale Filme und Serien liefern.

Es ist gut zu wissen, dass das auch von immer mehr Leuten so wahrgenommen wird, denn die Leute die hinter diesen animierten Figuren stehen leisten wirklich Großes und treten dabei nie mit ihrem eigenen Gesicht in Erscheinung.

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BeitragVerfasst: 09.07.2017, 17:45 
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Die nächsten Folgen bilden den zweiten Teil der 1. Staffel. Wieder etwas gelernt. :lol:

Zitat:
Warren Ellis talks Netflix's Castlevania
Warren Ellis, comic book author and writer/producer on Netflix's Castlevania, answers our questions about the series.

by Thomas Wilde

If you're into comic books at all, you probably know the name Warren Ellis. His most famous work might be the cyberpunk story Transmetropolitan, his work defining the Wildstorm universe with comics like Planetary and The Authority, or his six-issue runs for Marvel on Secret Avengers and Moon Knight.

Currently, he's putting out the independent books Injection and Trees for Image and reimagining the old '90s Wildstorm superhero universe as a taut science fiction/conspiracy book in DC's The Wild Storm. His novella Normal is now available in paperback.

Ellis is also the writer and co-producer for Castlevania, which debuted yesterday on Netflix. We were able to ask him a few questions about the show.

I remember you discussing a Castlevania direct-to-DVD movie more than 10 years ago while you were putting out the Bad Signal, but it seemed like this project was stuck in development hell until relatively recently. Can you talk about the road this project's taken for you?

Honestly, I'd forgotten all about it. 10 years ago, I was [hired] to write a Castlevania movie, and the project stalled for reasons I'm still not entirely clear on. In any case, it went away, and I moved on. I have a feeling I've written two novels and one novella since then, as well as god-knows-how-many graphic novels, a few tv scripts, and etcetera. Late in 2015, I got a call from Kevin Kolde at Frederator telling me that they'd sold Castlevania, with my script, to Netflix, and asking me if I would please turn that script into four half-hour TV episodes, and also write a continuation that would fill out a one-season order. I had to spend an hour grubbing around in my storage systems just to find the last draft of the original script. So I was a little taken by surprise.

So, I have no idea what happened in the intervening decade, but by 2016, I was working on a rewrite of a script that was 10 years old. So that was a little odd, yes. Also, pretty much the worst thing you can ask a writer to do because you're just spending all day swearing at your younger self for being such a useless hack.

What did you do to familiarize yourself with the series for the project? This isn't exactly a series with a firm continuity, and much of it changed over the course of the last few games.

I'm not a gamer, and there was no access to the original game to be had anyway -- at least, not 10 years ago. Luckily, even then there was an enthusiastic fan base who put an awful lot of information up on the web. So, thanks to the fans, there was a great deal of material for me to draw on.

One of the things I like about your work is that you're usually trying to do something new with a project, such as experimenting with the format, pacing, or price of a comic. What were your design goals with Castlevania?

Well, as noted, the original thinking all happened 10 years ago -- this is before Game of Thrones made it to television, in fact, or even Vikings -- so I was trying to create an adult-oriented medieval fantasy for the screen without a lot of other people really working in that space for me to push against. My goals were really to try and put a human face on this kind of weirdness, to find the relatable (or at least funny) moments between the plot beats and the action and try and make them breathe

This led to poor Richard Armitage having to voice act his journey up a medieval shit-pipe.

Can I just say here that our actors have been amazing, and have really lifted the piece beyond my every hope and expectation?
We managed to convince an amazing cast to join us for this insane gig. One of my favorite things is that Alejandra Reynoso's Twitter background pic is now the selfie she took with Tony Amendola during a Castlevania recording session.

How much of a say did you have in when and where the story took place? Obviously, the geography's fairly well set in CV, but the various stories are set across the better part of a thousand years. Why CVIII and not, say, Simon's Quest or Dawn of Sorrow?

There's not an exciting or illuminating answer to this one, sorry. I was asked to adapt one specific story.

Is the series still set within the CV timeline, the way you said the D2DVD movie was?

Near as, damnit? It's CVIII, as per instruction, so it remains set pretty much within that period.

How much, if anything, does the series have in common with that treatment for the earlier film? Rich Johnston has put up a saved copy of one of your production blogs, and I've noticed that Lisa Tepes is in a script sample there, as well as the Netflix series's cast list.

I made a bunch of cuts and rewrites to accommodate and take best advantage of the new four-episode structure -- I think I lost a character or two, and removing maybe half a dozen scenes? The rewriting was done in early 2016, so a lot of that is fuzzy in my memory now. I write a lot, and I am really quite old now. But, speaking generally, this four-part opening is essentially the script I wrote 10 years ago, and my contracted task was to adapt that script for an episodic framework, not write a new one. The second, forthcoming part of Season 1 is, however, all new territory.

Is the goat scene still in?

Apparently so! And you should hear some of the things I've forced actors to say in the second part of Season 1, for 2018...

Stay tuned to GameSkinny for all things Castlevania.


https://www.gameskinny.com/zgpdu/warren-ellis-talks-netflixs-castlevania

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BeitragVerfasst: 10.07.2017, 19:36 
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Die Sache mit dem Casting sieht ausgerechnet im Falle Richards wohl etwas anders aus. :lol: Ich frage mich ja, was ihn so lange zögern ließ bzw. welche andere Verpflichtung erst gelöst werden oder welcher Zeitplan angepasst werden musste:

Zitat:
10 years of purgatory wasn't enough to keep Netflix's Castlevania down

Interview with the vampire


2017-07-10 12:00:00· Peter Glagowski@KingSigy

At RTX this weekend, I got a chance to sit down with the director of Netflix's Castlevania, Sam Deats, and Federator Studios director of marketing, Nate Olson.

We chatted about the recently launched series and how it overcame its development hell to finally hit the streaming juggernaut.

Destructoid: How did this project come to be?

Sam: Basically, Over 10 years ago, Kevin Kolde ending up getting the rights to the show and was trying to get it going. They started to get the scripts together, they were making it direct to DVDs. Unfortunately they had to hit pause on it for a good while and then that got revitalized when Adi Shankar showed up.

I was really interested in the property and they [Federator] managed to get a deal with Netflix. That's a really short version of a 10 year gap with them holding onto the property but they had written a bunch of scripts back 10 years ago and Netflix really thought that the scripts were great. That's pretty much how it kind of came back to life.

We came in pretty much around that time when it was starting to come back to life. You know, a good ways into that. We saw that it was coming back to life, Warren [Ellis] reached out to Federator and they were interested in working with us.

Destructoid: What intentions do you have for following plotlines from the series?

Sam: That's going to be up to Warren. I only know bits and pieces and I can't say much because of spoilers.

Destructoid: How easy was it to get Konami's okay on the series?

Sam: When we were making the series, Konami was very chill about everything. They seemed to just like what we were doing. It was a very easy process working with them. They occasionally had relatively minor notes on like character designs and stuff like that.

Someone over there has a great eye for continuity errors, they would send us over little things like hey this person is holding their weapon in the wrong hand or something like that. We'd take a look and say, oh shit, yeah, you're right. And so that process working with them was really very easy.

Destructoid: What was the casting process like?

Sam: That casting process is mostly handled by the producers but they were very much involved in that process. One thing I can say is just the absolute delight it was to have the kind of casting choices that were made. The incredible luck we had to have Richard Armitage as Trevor. I say luck because he got signed on very late in the game.

We had a few things fall through and it was a struggle to find someone for everything. And just by luck and circumstance, and everything like that, Richard ended up coming in and he ended up being absolutely perfect for the role. So I like to think that all of the struggles beforehand happened so that we could end up with Richard being Trevor.

Richard was originally what Warren suggested and it was right on, perfect!

Destructoid: When creating scripts for the show, which games in the series did you draw inspiration from?

Sam: Oh I can't say much about that. Of course that's more or less Warren.

Nate: I can say this is based off of Castlevania III. Its a prequel and you've got multiple characters and storylines like father vs son, mothers, dealings with the church.

Sam: It follows the plotline of the NES game to a certain extent.

Nate: The thing that makes this the most successful adaptation of a video game is that there is more to it to begin with.


Destructoid: How did you go about picking an artistic style?

Sam: We definitely wanted to do something that was going to fit within the Castlevania universe; something that's going to jive with fans jive with us because most of my team is diehard fans ourselves. We obviously couldn't help but to reference the shit out of Ayami Kojima's work from Symphony of the Night onward, where they had really solidified a look and feel for Castlevania.

We reference that a great deal while we are trying to develop the style while also considering Warren's script which has certain influences that you wanted to pull in. Those had elements of humor and had a lot of characterization. We wanted to make sure that we were developing something that would allow for that.

There was a combination of pulling some of that Ayami Kojima Castlevania influence while also thinking about how we can broaden the ability to have these characters express. That is where we start referencing other anime work. Basically, you see the way that characters in a lot of Satoshi Kun films are able to emote and you see how characters in shows like [Cowboy] Bebop and the Berserk anime films were able to have a darker story, but also get more expressive and have moments of humor.

It was finding that nice little middle ground where we're able to have the characters express themselves in the best way possible while also having that same kind of design language that Ayami Kojima worked into these characters.

Destructoid: What were some of the limitations on episode length or the amount of episodes?

Sam: Well, that wasn't so much an issue. One of the nice things with working on Netflix shows that you don't necessarily have to worry about having a show run too long or anything like that. We don't have to have an exact minute or second counter. It gives you some breathing room to play with, sometimes, and go a little bit over and not have to worry too much.

It has been very nice to have that ability to just let things breathe a little bit, or to edit things in a way without having to worry about. an agency overly cutting or overly padding stuff to get a very specific minute count. So that hasn't been too much of an issue. Warren's scripts were pretty well set up for the length we needed to hit.

Nate: I should say, Netflix has a minimum minute count, but not a maximum.

Sam: So long as you hit the minimum you can do whatever the hell you want to. We didn't really go overboard or anything but you know...

Destructoid: All of a sudden there are 90 minute episodes (laughs)

Nate: So really, the limitation is production funds. When you're making animation, you estimate the amount per minute, so that's the only limitation. You only have so much funding.

Sam: Yeah exactly. It's very rare in animation where you have like a bunch of leftover footage that you can start taking from one place. You typically board it and you create animatic. Most of the editing is done during the board animatic phase, where you're trying to figure out where the cuts are edits are. Any time you need to add shots or cut shots, you're just throwing money out of the window. So it's very important to get that first part of the process done before you go on unlike with film where are you going to have like a lot of a lot of extra people.

Destructoid: Yeah, studios like to shoot B Roll for that exact purpose.

Sam: Yeah, exactly.

Destructoid: What is your favorite game from the series?

Sam: I mean, I hate to give a generic answer but I think Symphony of the Night is pretty great (laughs).

Destructoid: I think that is everyone's favorite. It's mine, too.

Sam: I don't know if I could say anything else. That being said, I would say that Dawn of Sorrow probably perfected the formula that Symphony of the Night started.

Destructoid: I don't disagree. That probably was the most refined.

Sam: I also really love Portrait of Ruin and Order of Ecclesia.

Destructoid: I was a big fan of Circle of the Moon.

Sam: Yeah, all of the handheld games I was really happy with, but Symphony of the Night started all that and it still has a lot of things that they ended up kind of bailing on in the later games. I really appreciated this little easter eggs that they had, like hidden command specials. The fact that it's just a little bit more broken is kind of nice. I like that you can exploit certain things or even sequence break a little bit more than you can in, say, other games. I enjoy those things. Same way with like the Metroid games, that's always been something I enjoy is figuring out how to kind of break the game a little.

Destructoid: How do you think this show will help with revitalizing the series?

Sam: That's hard to say. It's really exciting to see a lot of fans that have just kind of fallen off and gave up starting to come back and be like, holy shit! This is...this is cool! The series is coming back! Seeing that excitement, I would hope would translate to a lot more recognition to help it grow. I very much hope that this is going to get people excited about the property again and excited about the games.


https://www.destructoid.com/10-years-of-purgatory-wasn-t-enough-to-keep-netflix-s-castlevania-down-447906.phtml?utm_source=dlvr.it&utm_medium=twitter

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Richard ist halt mittlerweile eine echte Bank wenn es um so etwas geht. Es ist schön, dass sein Talent für Dinge dieser Art von den Fachleuten so hoch eingeschätzt wird.

Und das er perfekt für Trevor ist, zeigen alleine schon die Reviews, die ihn förmlich mit Lob überschütten. :heartthrow:

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Oaky hat geschrieben:
Richard ist halt mittlerweile eine echte Bank wenn es um so etwas geht. Es ist schön, dass sein Talent für Dinge dieser Art von den Fachleuten so hoch eingeschätzt wird.
Und das er perfekt für Trevor ist, zeigen alleine schon die Reviews, die ihn förmlich mit Lob überschütten. :heartthrow:


wurde auch langsam Zeit ;) :hurra: :heartthrow: :grins:

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Zur nächsten Staffel und überhaupt: ;)

Zitat:
The Plan for 'Castlevania' Season 2 Is In Motion
The first season of the anime adaptation of the gothic game series is just the beggining.
By James Grebey on July 12, 2017


When Adi Shankar says he made Castlevania “for the fans,” it’s initially a little worrisome. That, after all, is the line that frustrated studio filmmakers bust out when their summer blockbuster gets lambasted by critics because it’s a bad movie. But Castlevania, Netflix’s new anime is largely a hit with fans and critics alike — no small feat, since it’s based on a video game series. And Shankar explains that his version of “for the fans” is very different than some other filmmakers’ version of the phrase.

“It’s like, no, [they] didn’t make it for the fans. The fans are the ones who say they didn’t like the movie,” the executive producer tells Inverse over the phone, having recently recuperated from a red eye flight. “This was made for people who like games. This show was a love letter to this game.”

And Shankar was sincere when he wrote that love letter. “I kind of hyped the show a lot back in February. I made a lot of promises, and I think the general consensus is ‘Oh wow, he wasn’t just blowing smoke up everyone’s asses. It was legit.’” he says. “It’s because, the bottom line is, I wasn’t going to fuck up my own childhood.”

Shankar made a name for himself with dark and gritty fan films, while achieving sanctioned mainstream success with movies like The Grey and fan-favorite Dredd. For Shankar, there’s no need to compartmentalize being a fan and being a creator. And so he’s aware that one of the complaints that even fans levy against the short, four-episode first season of Castlevania is that it ends somewhat abruptly; it gathers the core characters together and functions more as a prologue than a complete narrative. The main character, Trevor Belmont, doesn’t even come close to meeting Dracula in the episodes that have been released.

Shankar says, essentially, trust him.
Adi Shankar.

“To me, it’s a multi-year plan,” he continues. “It’s like you’re building a much larger narrative.” Step one of that plan is introducing our cast of characters — including Count Dracula, the surprisingly sympathetic villain who is unleashing hell and death across the land of Wallachia. The entire first episode is about Dracula, as it introduces us to his human wife and the religious leaders who burned her at the stake, invoking the vampire’s wrath. Shankar says it was important to start with Dracula because “Your story is only as good as your villain.”

“We live in a world that isn’t black and white,” he continues. “The show exists in a world that isn’t black and white. So, to have started with Dracula as this ‘monster’ would have been a disservice to not only his character, but to this entire mythology.”

Those shades of gray extend to the protagonists as well, especially the vampire hunter Trevor Belmont. “You look at everything I’ve ever done, and the only common thread is that, yeah, they’re all violent, tend to be R-rated and mature, stuff like that, but they’re all about antiheroes,” Shankar says. “I can tell you from firsthand experience: writing antiheroes is difficult. You don’t want to make, like, the emo kid who is just kind of a downer for no reason.”

Trevor is much more than the gruff, hyper-masculine beefcake who whipped Dracula in the original game art. (Shankar says the show’s Trevor wears a shirt instead of a Conan-like outfit because “You’ve got Alucard without a shirt, and it’s like, where do we draw the line? Does every dude just have a six-pack and no shirt? Is this now a Channing Tatum movie?”) No, the Trevor of the show is weary, a little rusty, and not necessarily eager to answer the hero’s call to action. He’s also surprisingly funny, with a dry wit that helps keep things light amidst the gore. Shankar credits writer Warren Ellis’s trademark gallows humor and Richard Armitage’s decidedly not-mopey voice acting with helping make the difficult character likable.

Now that we’ve met Trevor, and he’s met up with his teammates (the young witch Sypha Belnades and Dracula’s good guy son, Alucard) they’re ready to get into some scrapes in Season 2. Originally, the sophomore season was meant to be a four-episode run just like the first, but Netflix doubled the order to eight episodes. Shankar won’t say if he’s planning on using the extra time to make next season cover the second and third acts of the story, or just give part two some breathing room for extra nuance. He does, however, note that he and his team aren’t fans of “adding time for the sake of adding time.”

So no word yet on whether the new seaon will include Grant Dynasty, a wall-crawling pirate who was the only player character who didn’t make it into Season 1. He’s also not going to say for sure what familiar Castlevania bosses may or may not show up in future seasons, but he will admit that the classic sub-boss, Death, “opens up a lot of interesting wormholes.” He also really likes the idea of a doppelganger, a common trope in video games, but knows it’s rarely pulled off in movies and TV. Maybe Trevor will fight an evil version of himself. Maybe he’ll meet Dracula in the flesh for the first time.

“The groundwork has been set. Everyone has their mission now,” Shankar says, comparing Season 2 to Halo 2, which was the first Halo video game just… “bigger.”

“Season 2 is awesome. It’s just frickin’ awesome,” he teases.

Will Trevor top this kill in Season 2?

After that? Who knows. Shankar says that as long as his fellow fans support the show he’s making, he’d love to tackle other Castlevania games.

“I want to do all of it. I want to keep telling stories because ultimately Castlevania is a universe, it’s a story about this family. It’s about generations of this dope family,” he says, referring to the Belmont clan. “Each generation has their own problems has their own little nuances, and they’re dealing with the realities of the time period that they’re living in.”

That’s all in the future, though. For now, Shankar’s feeling good after somehow making a good video game adaptation. Up next, he needs to focus on Season 2 and the just-announced Assasins Creed series. Are there any lessons that he learned making Castlevania that he’s going to bring to the next video game anime?

“Absolutely,” Shankar says. “Don’t fuck up your own childhood.”


https://www.inverse.com/article/34013-castlevania-netflix-adi-shankar-season-2-dracula-trevor-belmont-interview

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Zitat:
Adi Shankar on the Netflix Castlevania Series

By Jenna Busch
ON July 14, 2017

The animated Castlevania series is now streaming all four episodes of season one on Netflix. The show was recently renewed for a second season, which will feature eight episodes. We recently got a chance to speak to showrunner Adi Shankar about the show, his horror influences and what might be coming in Season 2.

The Castlevania cast features the voice talents of Graham McTavish (The Hobbit, Preacher) as Dracula, Richard Armitage (The Hobbit trilogy) as Trevor Belmont, James Callis (Battlestar Galactica) as Alucard, Emily Swallow (Supernatural) as Lisa, Matt Frewer (Orphan Black) as The Bishop, Tony Amendola (Annabelle) as The Elder and Alejandra Reynoso (G.I. Joe: Renegades) as Sypha Belnades. Castlevania is executive produced by Warren Ellis, Kevin Kolde, Adi Shankar and Fred Seibert.

ComingSoon.net: I just marathoned Castlevania and I loved it!

Adi Shankar: Thank you! You make something in a vacuum, especially when it fits into a paradigm of something that doesn’t really fit. You have no idea how people are going to respond to it, so thank you.

CS:
Were you surprised by the positive response?

Shankar: Yes, absolutely. I was pleasantly surprised that it crossed over the way it has, because it’s crossed over into the pop culture zeitgeist zone. I didn’t expect that. Ultimately this was a show made by the fans, like me and everyone else who worked on it, for Castlevania fans. So that fact that people who haven’t played the game and tangentially heard about it are fans, that’s amazing.

CS: I know this has been in the works for a while. Can you tell us how you got involved?

Shankar:
There have been a lot of iterations of this and I think there is a lot of misinformation out there as well, right? For instance, I had a reporter ask me earlier, ‘oh hey, so at one point you were going to do this live action, right?’ and I was like, no, no. Absolutely not. I was offered a Castlevania show or a live-action Castlevania movie, but it was a different team, you know? No one involved in this iteration – it was different. So yeah, there is a lot of misinformation floating out there.

CS: When I finished the four episodes, I was like, wait, I want to see more! I had heard that when Warren Ellis first wrote this, it was done as a trilogy and that the next eight episodes would wrap up the trilogy. Do you have plans beyond Season 2?

Shankar:
Have you played the games?

CS: Yup! All of them.

Shankar: Right, so as far ask I’m concerned, Castlevania is the story of multiple generations of a family… the games have provided a phenomenal blueprint.

CS: Is there a specific one of the many games that you’d like to use as an influence in one of the future seasons?

Shankar:
Yeah, Kid Dracula. I’m kidding. That’s a joke. You know, it’s not about saying, hey, it’s just one game. As you know, as someone who has played the all the games, they kind of bleed into each other. It’s like the events of one game affect the next game. No, there isn’t one game in particular. I mean, I can tell you personally that my favorite game is Symphony of the Night, but that is because I’m 32. Basically I started – the PS1 era was very special to me, so it makes sense that Symphony of the Night would be a video game touchstone for me, personally. But each generation has their own touchstones. And it’s something, quite frankly, that means different things to different people.

CS: You had an incredible cast for this. How involved were you in casting? Who would you like to have — dream casting – for Season 2?

Shankar: Johnny Depp. [laughs] The beauty of it was, they all auditioned. It’s not like – are you familiar with my other show Adi Shankar’s Gods and Secrets?

CS: Yup!

Shankar: So that show, and the Bootleg Universe, those were all cast via text message. I picked up my phone and I was like, ‘Yo, Thomas Jane! You should do it!” Or “Yo, Van Der Beek, what are you up to? The show is at 2:30am on a Tuesday!” But this, obviously it was like a professional show! There was not texting of cast members at two in the morning, trying to get them to show up. [laughs] We had a wonderful casting director named Meredith [Layne]… so it was just the audition process. They sent us tapes and we listened to them and picked the ones that we felt really nailed the characters. It was very tough because we had so many great people who came our way, wanting to be a part of the show and a lot of great options to choose from.

CS: What was it like having the freedom to do an adult-focused animated series on Netflix?

Shankar: The advent of streaming technology has created opportunities for me as a storyteller that simply would not have existed a few years ago.

CS: Is there anything you can tell us about your upcoming Assassin’s Creed series?

Shankar: I literally can’t say anything about it other than I’m lucky. I’m just lucky! I’m just f****** lucky, you know what I mean? What the f***? I was literally on the brink of being kicked out of everything with the copyright situation with Power/Rangers, with the whole Bootleg Universe, and all of a sudden, that didn’t end up happening and resulted in all these corporations I was basically making fun of calling me and saying hey, why aren’t you working on our IP? It’s just amazing. I guess I’m finally waking up to the fact that I’m super blessed.

CS: What are your horror influences for this series?

Shankar: For Castlevania, the references I threw out to the team a lot were basically Ninja Scroll and Vampire Hunter D. I thought Warren Ellis, who is arguably one of the greatest living authors today, wrote an amazing script. And I was like, to do this script justice, let’s not just do the coverage, master, medium close up, traditional television directing thing. Let’s do actual legit cinematic storytelling that is kind of absent, I would argue, from movies today. And that’s why you see some of these shots, and there’s actual choreography there, with specific camera moves and very specific shot design.

CS: You had some kick-ass women in this story and I wanted to ask how important that is to you when you’re doing something like this.

Shankar: It’s interesting because, you know, I am obviously a minority. I am an immigrant. I immigrated to America when I was 16, and I grew up in the ’90s when American entertainment was the preeminent global thing. And I never saw myself on screen. So to me, it’s not as much about having kick-ass women for the sake of having kick-ass women, but at the same time I want to reflect reality. And the truth is, when you look around the world, there’s a lot of kick-ass women that I know. My friend Gina Carano can beat up every dude I’m friends with. Again, it wouldn’t be important to me if it wasn’t true. But it is true, right? And it’s the same thing with Adi Shankar’s Gods and Secrets. It’s loaded with kick-ass women. But again, it’s not because it’s a thing. I don’t feel any pressure to change characters or do things in a specific way. The only person who actually is not a f*** up in the show is Sypha [Alejandra Reynoso]. Right? I mean, Trevor [Richard Armitage] is an alcoholic, Dracula [Graham McTavish] is so blinded by rage that he thinks he’s the hero of his own story, but he’s really the villain. The church is not bad, but it’s just the people controlling the church – in the story they’re using the church as a tool to accumulate more power for themselves. So, you know, Sypha is the only reasonable character in the show, who has her s*** together. I feel like that’s a pretty accurate representation of my experience with most women.

What did you guys think of Castlevania Season 1? Are you excited for the next eight episodes? What would you like to see in Assassin’s Creed? Let us know your thoughts in the comments or tweet us @ComingSoonnet.

Read more at http://www.comingsoon.net/tv/features/8 ... 7j66ISg.99

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Adi Shankar zur 3. Staffel und mehr:

Zitat:
Geek Culture
August 1, 2017

‘Castlevania’ Season 3: How The Netflix Anime TV Series Goes From Trevor Belmont To ‘Symphony Of The Night’

Patrick Frye

Talking about the Castlevania Season 3 release date may seem like putting the proverbial cart before the horse, but in this case, producer Adi Shankar has made it quite clear that he’d love to take the story of Trevor Belmont and Alucard and run off with it into the night. The beloved Konami video game series provides plenty of source material and it’s possible the anime will go all the way to Castlevania: Symphony Of The Night.

The biggest reason to believe that Castlevania Season 3, 4, and beyond could happen is that it’s the first video game adaptation to receive good reviews and a fresh rating from Rotten Tomatoes. The 32-year-old Shankar grew up playing the NES classic Castlevania 3: Dracula’s Curse and, like other gamers, he knows what it feels like to be burned by bad video game movies.

“[The Netflix Castlevania anime] is something that was made for fans — actually made for fans, not at fans,” he explained to Rotten Tomatoes.

“The struggle for a lot of people adapting video games is they aren’t gamers. They don’t actually like the thing. A lot of dudes go, ‘What do kids like? Video games? OK, cool, get me a video game with a built-in fan base — that means they’re going to show up opening weekend to my movie.’ Nah, dude. They’re not going to show up. In fact, they’re going to go online and make fun of you for desecrating the thing they love.”

The ironic part is that Castlevania writer Warren Ellis is “not a gamer” by his own admission. “The awful truth is that I’ve never played or even seen the [Castlevania] game. Terrible, isn’t it?” Ellis told Paste Magazine. Amazingly, even Richard Armitage, who voices the main character Trevor Belmont, did not know anything about the video game series.

“I didn’t really know what the Castlevania series was and we didn’t work in the same room together, but they’d record us in different studios,” Armitage told Den Of Geek.

“We were working to no picture, so it was really just a script and they’ve animated around the voices, but I really liked it. I thought it was so much fun and a little bit anarchic. It’s brilliant and the animation is amazing.”

However, Ellis did have experience working on the 2008 survival-horror game Dead Space and his goal was to “write a medieval horror fiction while obeying the ground rules of the work being adapted.” In addition, Konami employees, especially Koji Igarashi, forced Ellis to rewrite the script five times before they were certain the Castlevania TV series experience would be authentic to the video games.

The resulting anime success caused Netflix to green light the Castlevania TV series for eight more episodes. Shankar told Business Insider that he’s “not a fan of the make it up as you go along type of storytelling” and that “there is a master plan for the show.”

“I know what the story is. I know what the beats are. I can say that it’s gonna be more expansive than [season] one,” Shankar said.

Even before the first episodes aired, Ellis was saying the first and second seasons are “really just one, split into two unequal parts.” The first four episodes were based on a script from 2007. The script for the next eight episodes is already written and Ellis admits, “[This] is where I move away from the source material somewhat, stretch my legs, and probably get a little eccentric in places.” Freed from the format limitations of normal TV channels, the second part is planned to “take more advantage of being on Netflix.”

Shankar also expressed his hopes for creating Castlevania Season 3 and beyond. The team has put together a “multi-year plan” that will be “building a much larger narrative” that leads into the full story of the Belmont’s multi-generational fight against vampires like Dracula.

“I want to do all of it. I want to keep telling stories because ultimately Castlevania is a universe, it’s a story about this family. It’s about generations of this dope [Belmont] family,” he said. “Each generation has their own problems has their own little nuances, and they’re dealing with the realities of the time period that they’re living in.”

Why The Castlevania Anime Started With Castlevania 3: Dracula’s Curse

Shankar recently shared his five favorite games and as you’d expect Castlevania: Symphony Of The Night is one of them. So why did the show runner not start the Castlevania anime series with the fan favorite? Before the Netflix TV series was even a possibility, Konami wanted Castlevania 3: Dracula’s Curse turned into a live action movie and they were talking to director Sylvan White. Shankar ended up inheriting the project in 2014 only to reject the movie version. Then a “chance encounter” started the anime project and so the third Castlevania game apparently became the foundation due to Konami’s earlier decision. Technically, they skipped the beginning of the full story, but fans would have to know the full chronology of the video game series to realize that fact.

There are actually more Castlevania video games than some fans might expect. A month after the first 1987 NES title, the Microsoft MSX computer received Vampire Killer. The 1989 Game Boy title Castlevania: The Adventure came out before the 1991 Castlevania 2: Simon’s Quest and the 1990 Castlevania 3: Dracula’s Curse. There was even a 1988 arcade game called Haunted Castle that had vampire hunter Simon Belmont trudging through Dracula’s castle. The arcade game was apparently difficult since there was only one life and quarters were good only for three continues. (In more modern times, there’s also the 2008 Castlevania: The Arcade, which allowed gamers to use an LED-infused whip.)

And that’s just the list of games released before Koji Igarashi became involved in 1997 with Castlevania: Symphony Of The Night. The official Castlevania timeline is actually pretty convoluted since the chronological order of the games starts with Castlevania: Lament Of Innocence, a 2003 PlayStation 2 game that starred Leon Belmont.

This story was skipped by the Netflix anime, but it shows how the Belmonts became the first vampire killers in 1094. To summarize the plot, Leon loses his fiancee and renounces his pledge to the eastern church so he can take revenge. He tangles with the traitorous Mathius, who goes on to become Dracula because he wanted to have revenge on God by becoming an immortal vampire. Mathius survives that encounter and changes his name to Vlad Tepes.

From there, following the story chronologically becomes even more confusing. The events surrounding Trevor Belmont and Alucard occur in Castlevania 3: Dracula’s Curse, but that NES game came out 1990. The next major story event occurs in Castlevania: Curse of Darkness, a 2005 PlayStation 2 game. Then the story jumps back to another 1989 game released on Game Boy.

All in all, the release order of the games rarely line up consecutively in the Castlevania timeline. One thing that is predictable is that Dracula will return to life once every one hundred years based on the timeline created by Igarashi. Unfortunately, that decision came with a huge side effect.

“That was a bad decision,” Igarashi told Wired back in 2007.

“Since Dracula only appears every 100 years, we made the whole timeline and ran out of places to put in another game. I made the timeline, but I shouldn’t have actually released it, because now it’s all official.”

In order to get around this problem, the video game developers ended up rebooting the entire Castlevania series. Studio MercurySteam and Metal Gear Solid creator Hideo Kojima turned the series 3D with the Castlevania: Lords Of Shadow game and its sequel. The story had Gabriel Belmont fighting the forces of Satan only to end up becoming Lord Dracula himself.

Castlevania Season 3 Based On Castlevania: Curse Of Darkness?

Igarashi may regret creating an official Castlevania timeline but Ellis and Shankar will certainly appreciate having plenty of source material to draw upon for creating Castlevania Season 3 and beyond. The next eight episodes will likely introduce the pirate character Grant DaNasty and feature fights in Dracula’s castle with Medusa, Frankenstein’s monster, Death, doppelgangers, and the count himself, but that’s just when the story starts to get more interesting.

Castlevania: Curse Of Darkness is set three years after Castle Dracula is destroyed and although Wallachia finds relative prosperity, the land is still facing disasters like poverty and famine from Dracula’s curse. Trevor hears rumors of Dracula worshipers and during his investigation, he runs into Hector, a human servant who defected from Dracula’s army because he was disgusted by the vampire’s brutal methods.

Hector is a former Devil Forgemaster, which means he learned to use the dark arts and can forge demonic creatures. This man had been living a peaceful life but another former general of Dracula named Isaac conspired to kill Hector’s wife, Rosaly, because Isaac believed Hector’s betrayal caused Dracula’s downfall.

Seeking vengeance against Isaac, Hector marches on the remnants of Dracula’s castle to find it morphed by dark magic. Hector and Trevor eventually realize that the enemy is trying to resurrect both the castle and Dracula himself. In order to stop this plot, Hector is forced to once again embrace the dark arts that he hated.

However, it turns out that everyone is being manipulated by the grim reaper Death, Dracula’s right-hand-man. In order to avoid spoiling Castlevania Season 3 too much, this article won’t reveal what happens next, but as anyone can guess Dracula’s forces are eventually stopped… for a time.

One hundred years after Dracula was slain by Trevor Belmont, his descendant, Christopher, is the protagonist of the very first Game Boy Castlevania game. Set in 1576, this is when the legend begins: “Once every 100 years, when the faith in God is forgotten, Dracula will come back to life.”
Upcoming 'Castlevania' Netflix series will be animated.

A Netflix Castlevania: Symphony Of The Night Anime May Take Years

Castlevania Season 3 has a more modern game story to build upon but many of the earlier Castlevania games had limited character development and plot points. The next two games, The Castlevania Adventure and Castlevania 2: Belmont’s Revenge, focus on Christopher Belmont defeating Dracula only to find out 15 years later that the vampire was not destroyed. Dracula rises again, possesses the mind of Christopher’s son, Soleiyu Belmont, and raises four castles. The angry father goes on to put Dracula down for another hundred year dirt nap.

In 1691, the forces of evil once again resurrect Dracula only to have Simon Belmont kill the vampire in the 1987 NES Castlevania game. An alternate version of this story was told in Super Castlevania 4, but the overall gist remains the same. The story gets a bit more interesting in Castlevania 2: Simon’s Quest because the vampire hunter is struck with a curse that’s causing his body to decay. It turns out Dracula will be revived if the curse kills Simon so the Belmont man sets out to gather the scattered body parts of Dracula and burn them. There’s a twist at the end involving Dracula’s fang but in the end, the big, bad bat is vanquished.

How many episodes or seasons will it take to cover these Castlevania story events? It really depends on how “eccentric” Warren Ellis is allowed to be. Considering the limited source material with the earlier games, it’s possible Konami will allow the writer to stretch his legs more than usual and put flesh on the bare bones characters provided by the old games. If the goal is to make a straight adaptation, then the events from all four games could probably be covered in a single season.

That still leaves a season or two before Shankar can stake his claim on Castlevania: Symphony Of The Night. A 2002 game called Castlevania: Harmony Of Dissonance features Juste Belmont battling Dracula’s essence that has risen 50 years after the vampire’s last defeat. Although it’s too early for Dracula to be back, someone else has managed to manifest Dracula’s castle. The 1993 game, Castlevania: Rondo of Blood, acts as a prequel to Symphony Of The Night since it shows how Richter Belmont was cursed after defeating Dracula in 1792.

Reaching Castlevania: Symphony Of The Night may take years but it’s only the tip of the iceberg. If Adi Shankar really wants to keep going then there’s many games, comics, and novels that are part of the official story. In the meantime, let’s just hope the Netflix anime TV series continues to do justice to the game series with the second season, never mind Castlevania Season 3.


http://www.inquisitr.com/4403395/castlevania-season-3-netflix-anime-tv-series-trevor-belmont-alucard-hector-castlevania-symphony-of-the-night-games-timeline/

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Und noch ein Interview:

Zitat:
The Animation Studio That Made Castlevania Explains Why It Was a Dream Project
Evan Narcisse
Yesterday 5:30pmFiled to: Castlevania

Castlevania looked pretty dang cool when it hit Netflix last month. Part of the reason is the fact that the folks at Powerhouse Animation have been waiting for the chance to do a project like this for ages. Hell, they practically stalked the producers.

A few weeks ago, conversations I had at this year’s Rooster Teeth Expo reminded me that Powerhouse Animation is based in Austin, Texas. I’d just watched the first season of Castlevania and got in touch with them to talk about their role in the project.

Powerhouse has two locations—in Austin and Burbank, California—and the Texas location has all the hallmarks of a nerd-culture creative space. Action figures, graphic novels, and game consoles are in abundance, jockeying for space next to the drawing tablets and widescreen displays used to bring the work for life.

After touring the studio and talking with co-founder Brad Graeber and creative director Sam Deats, I couldn’t help but feel that the 16-year-old studio that worked on Netflix’s Castlevania series wound up being eminently qualified for the adaptation. Its crew has worked on video games and loves action-heavy anime and cartoons, with a particular affection for Castlevania III, that, in Deats’ case, goes back decades. What follows is an edited, condensed version of our talk from two weeks ago.

io9: You guys have been around since 2001. You started off as a Flash animation house?

Brad Graeber:
We started off as an on-paper, traditional animation house. So, I think if I remember correctly, our first two jobs were—we did an animation test for a group in Houston for a Snoop Dogg series that never took off. And then we did animation, as a service group for Disney, for The Proud Family. That was all on paper, and basically we fixed scenes that were animated poorly overseas. They would ship us those scenes on paper, we would re-animate them and ship that paper in boxes and send them back.

io9: And so, you were there to witness the Flash animation boom on the web. How did you guys reorient yourselves, then?

Graeber:
The other co-founders—Bruce [Tinnin] and Frank [Gabriel]—and I all worked at a dot com, and we got hired because that dot com was trying to develop animation software. And I came from this lab—at Texas A&M—in graduate school that did things with Flash. So, we started using Flash together and then pitched cartoons. We did these little shorts, we did a lot of traditional animation stuff in Flash but, because Bruce and Frank both worked for Don Bluth at various times, our Flash stuff always had more of a traditional bent. Like, even in the beginning, we were scanning stuff we animated on paper, vectorizing it and using Flash as a tool. As opposed to, like, making paper cut-outs and stuff like that. And even when we did make the paper cut outs, we still drew everything on paper, scanned it, and brought it into Flash, which is crazy.

Sam Deats: I started while they were still doing that. And I was like, “No, I’m just going to draw straight [into the computer].” And that caught on, I guess.

io9: From there, a lot of video game work came about, right?

Graeber:
We programmed our own Flash games for quite a while; that led to us working as a service to do video game animation. Being in Austin, frankly speaking, [video games] were where we could get the most animation work. So we started working on things like DC Universe Online, Epic Mickey, Darksiders, Starhawk, and all that, and became known as a traditional animation studio that could do cinematics for folks. People like Sam have such a great eye for action/animation, and are such hardcore game fans, that we excelled at telling game stories and doing fight choreography because it’s the world that these guys lived in.

Deats: I’ve always loved action anime and I wanted to do that. In my off-time, I was doing a whole bunch of tests and rough animation. We put together a couple of little things we were able to start showing people, and all of a sudden we were starting to get projects. We were working on Banner Saga and Battle Chasers and doing these pieces where we just got to do crazy action animation stuff. I think that’s the set-up that went into us working on Castlevania later on.

io9: Good segue for jumping into Castlevania. Bruce mentioned that he knew a guy—Fred Seibert, founder of Frederator Studios—how did you guys wind up on the project?

Graeber:
Sam IM’d me one day, saying that he had heard Adi Shankar put something online about the Castlevania project. Frank knew a guy—Tom King—who’s a showrunner over there at Frederator. Frank, Tom, and Kevin started Heart of Texas Productions, which was an animation studio here in Texas for quite some time. And then, we actually got a meeting with Kevin. I’m a big fan of his from way back in the day. He was the producer on all the Ren & Stimpy stuff. Super cool guy. That was nerve-wracking already, but he called me and we got a meeting, and we were like, “What do we do?”

We put together a deck, basically, as if we were an ad agency pitching ourselves. if we were to direct the show. We hadn’t seen a script. We knew nothing about it, but Sam put together all these thoughts of what we’d do, what our influences would be and all that

Deats: I pulled out my “I love the Berserk manga, Blade the Immortal” and all that. That dark fantasy style of storytelling, character design, how gory it gets… I put together a bunch of drawings and sketches, and a few color images that channeled all of that. Most of it barely made it into the final look of the show. But, it at least got some interest out of them. I talked about the directing style and the feel, all the stuff that we think a show like this should be.
The answer to where Alucard was keeping that sword. (Image: Evan Narcisse)

I grew up on Castlevania. I continually play Symphony of the Night to this day. I think I had just finished a run-through of that before hearing about [the show being in development], so it was extremely exciting. It’s funny, I had heard about [a Castlevania project] over 10 years ago when they first were talking about the project as a direct-to-DVD series. And I saw the James Jean art that was going around. Every couple of weeks, I’d go to that website they had and hit refresh. Then every couple of months, then years. I gave up eventually.
Image: Evan Narcisse

io9: So, at one point, you yourself were that fan waiting for a Castlevania show?

Deats:
Exactly. Back then, I was probably working on Penny Arcade Adventures, which was a looong time ago.

io9: How did the pitch go?

Graeber:
Well, we flew up to that Frederator office and we walked [into a conference room] and Kevin’s like, “Oh... a bunch of babies.” Which is very hip. But I was like, “Oh crap, what have we done?” And then we walked in and we showed them this this kind of kung-fu/Mexican anime thing we’d done. And then we showed him another pitch that was very action-oriented, and I couldn’t tell how it was going.

But he said, “When I dug into this deck about Castlevania, I was like, ‘I want to see more of this stuff’.” Didn’t know how it was going to go but we really hit it off. A few days later, Kevin said, “Yeah, you’re the guys we want to go with.” We had champagne that I had been saving for years after that.

Deats: Honestly, I didn’t believe it for several months. I think it took awhile for contracts and stuff. I was like, “it’s not actually going to happen.” And then Brad walked in with a contract and I was like, “Oh, all right. Cool. I guess we’re good.”

io9: Tell me about the creative process from your end. When I spoke to Adi Shankar, he definitely made it seem like a group effort in terms of getting the tone and plot stuff right. Did the scripts come to you fully realized?

Deats:
The script that we got did have some edits a bit later on where they made a few adjustments and swapped some scenes around. But for the most part, the first script that we got was about 90 percent there. From there all we had to do was start figuring it out and doing designs and stuff like that. There was a very short period, at the beginning, where we were trying to figure out the final look and style and feel of the show. Otherwise, we just hit the ground running right when contracts were signed.

In the back of everyone’s heads, we knew that we wanted to heavily reference the style Ayami Kojima used the Castlevania games. We wanted to bring the same shade-before-image sort of thing. We tried out a number of things but, for the most part, there was nothing that we wanted to roll with. But those attempts kind of blended into the thought process.

io9: Ayami Kojima’s art is so iconic, but it would be hard and expensive to animate. That said, the aesthetic of the character design still feels like it references her style, just without all the embroidery and crazy detailing. Can you talk about how you captured the feel?

Deats:
Obviously, we wanted to get the feel but also get it at least somewhat more animate-able. And also we were working with a Warren Ellis script, and his script had a lot of humor in it, a lot of fun, expressive characters. We wanted to make sure we could pull out a nice variety of styles by referencing other anime shows that allowed for that. Satoshi Kon’s movies are very good about having realistic characters that express well. The Cowboy Bebop movie, in particular, I think really nailed that style well. So there’s some referencing going on outside of that design style in order to allow for more expressive and funny characters.

On the flip side, it’s really about taking the large forms of her designs, [looking at] how she breaks down outfits and simplified them. I was looking for those silhouette and shape decisions, and then blowing them up. That way, we get to the feel without having to get as many tiny details. There’s still a requirement to get in a certain amount of details. Animators hated me for that crest on Trevor Belmont’s back. Originally, I wanted them to take that as an image they could stamp on and move around, and they were struggling to get that to work. In certain close-ups, they did that, but they drew that thing over and over and over again. I feel terrible about that.

Graeber: But there’s a beauty and a gracefulness that I think Sam captured.

Deats: Anything comes down to how shading is handled, to a certain extent. That shape-language, as much as we’re able to inject it frame-by-frame, even carries into how shadows interact and come to taper out and into sharp points. It’s kind of hard to articulate. There’s just that... shape... you wouldn’t see in certain other animation.

io9: That leads into the anime question. You guys are trying to pay homage to a style and an idiom that originates outside the United States. What’s the tap dance you have to do to do that?

Deats:
We worked with a studio called MOI Animation. It’s out of Korea. They were the service studio that we worked with. This doesn’t answer your question, but I guess one of the unique things is that we have a studio full of animators and artists and people who do this stuff all the time. We actually provided key animation for a large chunk of the show, including most of the action shots.

Graeber: The Alucard scene.

Deats: Spencer Wan animated most of the entire Cyclops fight. And I animated a few shots here and there. Largely, to make sure they look the way we want. I don’t have as much time to do the animation as the full-time animators but the expressions and the acting in this show are a bit more nuanced and hard to get right.

I actually did a lot of key [animations] for important shots of characters. A lot of the Alucard stuff, for example, at the very end when he comes out of the coffin. I did the keys when Lisa and Dracula are having their discussion at the beginning. We were very involved with the animation process. And the post-production. As soon as we got the files back from MOI, we almost completely re-did the compositing. And re-lit everything. Re-did the lighting and color. Added particle effects. Atmosphere effects.

Graeber: We’re known for the level of compositing. We learned that stuff doing motion comics. Sam’s brother, Adam, really wanted it to be a very specific way. And so there wasn’t a scene that we did not re-touch.

Deats: We touched every single shot. And we even went so far as to go into the animation. I think the count came around to 400 or 500 shots. We, at minimum, did model fixes to faces. At maximum, completely re-animated. So, there was a lot of work done in post by Powerhouse.

Graeber: That’s not any detrimental thing to say about what the folks at MOI did. There was a very particular vision.

Deats: It’s very difficult, too. You get stuff sent back and you can do draw-overs; they take care of it, then they send it back to you. Maybe half the time it gets there, or you send a bunch of notes. Or you can just do it yourself! And so, a lot of the time—the timelines were tight—in order to ensure we put out the best thing that we could, we just did it ourselves.

io9: Now, let’s try answering the anime question again!

Deats:
Sorry! [laughter] Anyway, anime. There’s always the debate about whether a studio in the US that’s anime-influenced is, in itself, anime. And I’ll let other people decide. But the artists and animators here, obviously being heavily influenced by anime, it was easy for us to inject that look and feel into the show.

The guys over at MOI film, many of them work on anime. One of the animation directors there worked on the Berserk films and I think he’s worked on tons of anime projects. We got some guys for season two that worked on Death Parade and with Madhouse a lot. So, at the very least, we’re working with artists who directly work on anime.

Graeber: It’s tricky because people classify it by geography or style. That’s up to the person. But people need to get used to it. My generation was heavily influenced by Looney Tunes, the Disney films, that kind of thing. The talent that’s coming in now is influenced by anime. And there are amazing American artists—LeSean Thomas, Spencer Wan—all these people whose style would usually be categorized as anime, but they’re brilliant animation directors. And so it feels like you can’t lock it down...

io9: That border becomes a lot more porous.

Deats:
I think any artist that’s been doing this for a while will tell you the same thing, that they are the sum of their influences. And if you’ve grown up being influenced by anime-style work, then that’s going to be the look and feel of the work that you’re doing.

Hopefully, folks that like anime will enjoy what we’re putting together and also see that unique flavor that Warren Ellis’s writing brings in. I really love the fact that the voice actors had free reign. They weren’t having to dub to a certain lip sync or timing. I think that brings at least a little something extra for audiences that get to enjoy the voice acting of Richard Armitage and Graham McTavish. Because they really set the timing and the tone and the feel. I’m really happy with Graham McTavish as Dracula. It’s so good.

Graeber: I think we lucked out with the perfect team. Fred Seibert at Frederator has always been pushing the envelope with the kinds of things that are done. Kevin Kolde, who bought the Castlevania rights and brought them to Frederator, grew up doing the stuff with John K. and Spumco. Adi Shankar is kind of an iconoclast who likes taking a brand, just going all out there with it. And then Sam here, who just grew up with the game, loved the property, has this animation influence. it’s just the perfect grouping. And Warren Ellis. The most important person. He actually wrote this story, which sticks to the story of the game, but is so much more than you would usually find in someone writing the scripts.

Deats: Once of the first things I was impressed by was the fact that he was sticking fairly close to the original series canon. It wasn’t a total reboot, or a Lords of Shadow [the video game duology that offered its own twist on Castlevania’s lore], changing everything outright. The changes that were made all make total sense when you look back at the old NES game. And some of the story elements that didn’t quite jibe, these changes made a ton of sense and injected a lot of personality and character without just tossing everything out the window. And I appreciate the shit out of that.

io9: Talk to me about these changes that you really appreciate.

Deats: If you look back at the original games, Sypha is a part of the church. And when you consider the fact that Trevor Belmont was excommunicated for his dealings with the supernatural, you wonder how a magician would be a part of the church. It doesn’t really jibe well. So, it makes more sense for the entire team to be affected by how the church was at the time. In the same way, Dracula is deeply affected by his wife being killed. Trevor, directly affected by the Church. Sypha, her whole group, the same way. It makes for much better storytelling than this kind of weird ”Sypha is part of the church for some reason” don’t really know why...

What was the hardest thing to animate?

Deats: I mean, Alucard has to be just right. You can’t miss an eyelash on him without it looking weird. But fortunately, he was shirtless! So we didn’t have to worry about that. Fortunate for everybody he was shirtless. The most time probably went into the Alucard/Trevor fight. The Cyclops sequence was also very complicated. I think folks don’t realize keeping up with that damn cloak along with a laser beam tracking around, shooting sparks everywhere, and moving around in a scene with a moving camera is complicated stuff. That was a sequence that we also worked really, really hard on.


http://io9.gizmodo.com/the-animation-studio-that-made-castlevania-explains-why-1797476526

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Zitat:
Interview: Executive Producer Adi Shankar on the Intense Animation & Bold Storytelling of Netflix’s CASTLEVANIA Series
2017/09/14 21:58:38 UTC by Derek Anderson

This past summer was a memorable one for fans of Konami's video game franchise Castlevania. In addition to the release of a new four-episode animated series adaptation of the video games on Netflix, the streaming service also renewed the series for an eight-episode second season, and viewers of the show were treated to a story that took an R-rated approach to violence and a bold path with its storytelling. One of the creative forces behind the new series is Adi Shankar (executive producer of films such as Dredd and The Grey) and I had the opportunity to talk with the filmmaker about collaborating with Sam Deats and Warren Ellis, the freedom of working with Netflix, and much more.

Thanks so much for taking some time to talk with me and congratulations on Castlevania. I wrapped up watching the first season and I absolutely loved it.

Adi Shankar:
Amazing, amazing. That's good to know. A lot better than if you're like, "Oh man, I really didn't get that at all or like it."

Unfortunately, I never played the video games. I had an NES, I had a PlayStation One, but for some reason I missed out on Simon's Quest and Symphony of Night and all that stuff. Coming into this as a totally new fan, I immediately dug the story, and was immersed in the world and actually felt like I was experiencing a video game. I thought that was a really cool vibe just from watching the first season.

Adi Shankar:
Yeah. I guess my big takeaway now is it just goes to show what happens when fans are allowed to make a love letter officially. You saw what happens when you make a love letter unofficially with Power Rangers, Dirty Laundry [Shankar's Punisher short film]. Really, Netflix just deserves so much credit for allowing us to operate with no handcuffs and no restrictions.

Yeah, it seems like you guys were able to do exactly what you set out to do. It's one of those projects that seems like the vision came to full fruition and it's so cool, too, that you guys got Warren Ellis to write the script. For him to write the entire first season, he's such an amazing writer, and usually we see his stuff adapted for film, but to see him write something for the screen was really cool.

Adi Shankar:
You know, I've watched a lot of interviews over the years with different actors, but the one actor whose interviews really stand out to me as just genuine, real, and authentic, where you can actually draw some real information from, is George Clooney. He's constantly asked, "You're able to basically pick any role you want, you can be in any movie you want. Every studio wants to work with you. How do you decide what you want to do? How do you pick roles?" His response is great, it's always, "I like to work with directors and work on projects that are made with a point of view." That's a really nice way of saying, "I don't want to just work on commercial stuff for the sake of making commerce." He wants to be a part of projects that actually say something, and that's why so many of his movies are so memorable. There's definitely an element of that here—not just an element, it was clearly made with a point of view on every level, at every stage of the process.

Yeah, even the animation stands out. You are doing this 2D animation, which is really awesome to see nowadays, and it just has this vibrancy to it. Even though it's 2D, it still really pops, and I love that you bring an anime style to it. Was that something you really wanted to do when you came on board this project, to present it in that artistic style?

Adi Shankar:
Yeah, I grew up in Southeast Asia. I effectively immigrated here full-time when I was sixteen, but all these formative years involved me absorbing American culture as it was being presented in Southeast Asia, but really being so close to Japan, I was 50% influenced by Japanese culture as well. The thing about growing up in Hong Kong, for instance, at night, you have adult animation. They would play Akira, Ninja Scroll, Vampire Hunter D, on TV. It would be on TV. It wasn't this, "Hey we're gonna go to this really obscure store in the middle of nowhere to find this stuff." It was on TV. It was perfectly normal to me. When I immigrated to America, it just felt like something was missing here.

That R-rated animation was kind of missing. You weren't seeing that on TV as much over here in the States.

Adi Shankar:
I mean [not] at all. You can credit Matt [Stone] and Trey [Parker] with South Park and Seth MacFarlane with Family Guy and obviously BoJack Horseman, with normalizing animated comedy for adults. That's one genre. That's literally one genre.

I'm really impressed with the work that [animator and director] Sam Deats did on this. Can you talk about finding him and what made him the right choice to direct these episodes?

Adi Shankar:
He's a fan. He's literally a Castlevania fan, and he's a student of animation from all over the world. Really, you know, those two elements made him literally perfect. I could just do an interview of why Sam's amazing. You know who else is amazing, Kevin. [Executive producer] Kevin Kolde. Literally, he's a legend in this space. The project wouldn't exist without either of them.

Will both Sam and Warren be back to direct and write season two? I know you have the exciting double amount of episodes coming up.

Adi Shankar:
Yeah, absolutely. We're a team at this point. I'd love to keep working with both of them and Kevin on a bunch of things. These are just talented people.

Also, you have the Assassin's Creed animated series that was announced recently, which is really exciting. Can we expect something similar in terms of the animation style of Castlevania, or is it going to be a different style?

Adi Shankar:
So, I can't get into any of that. The only thing I can say, is if you look through my body of work, you will find a lot of consistency. I have no intention in deviating from that consistency in the near future.

Richard Armitage, who voices Trevor Belmont, his voice acting and what you put Trevor through in Castlevania reminds me of John McClane from Die Hard, where he's a hero that can do a lot of cool stuff, but he also gets beat up a lot, and he's not immune to violence. I thought that was really cool that you guys put him through the grinder.

Adi Shankar:
That kind of narrative structure only works with an antihero. At this point, I don't think I even know how to tell a story without an antihero.

There was an exciting announcement that Brigitte Nielsen joined Adi Shankar's Gods and Secrets, which I know has been in the works for a while. Has that been exciting for you to kind of get that moving forward again?

Adi Shankar
: It has, it has. It is a project I'm very excited about, very close to, obviously, because my name's in the title, also, which is gonna be interesting when it comes out. You know, it's interesting with all these projects, because there's really no blueprint for any of them. Even going back to all the bootleg shorts, there was never really a blueprint for anything, so you literally have no idea how people are gonna respond to it. A lot of times when I'm asked questions about projects that are a little further out, I have nothing to compare it to, and I have no basis to even have a dialogue about it.

Yeah, there is nothing to measure it against.

Adi Shankar:
Right. It'll be interesting to see the reaction to Adi Shankar's Gods and Secrets. Also, Will Yun Lee joined the cast as well. He's an amazing actor. He was in Power Rangers [the 2015 short film]. He played the North Korean general.

Brigitte and I have known each other for many years. In 2012, I started trying to put together this movie that the internet started calling The Female Expendables. We actually had a meeting about that project, and we just stayed in touch over the years.

Also, Derek Mears has joined the cast. I love him. He is the nicest person I have met in Los Angeles.


https://dailydead.com/interview-executive-producer-adi-shankar-on-the-engaging-animation-bold-storytelling-of-netflixs-castlevania-series/

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Sehr gute Platzierung innerhalb dieser 42er Liste:

Zitat:
42 Anime Shows You Should Probably Be Watching On Netflix, Hulu, And Amazon Prime

Get ready to add some shows to your "must watch" list!

Posted on May 7, 2018, at 10:46 p.m.
Morgan Murrell


[...]

4. Castlevania


Where you can watch it: Netflix

Why you should watch it: "I was initially apprehensive about this Netflix original, but once I have it a chance, I was hooked. The voice cast was amazing, especially Richard Armitage (Trevor) and Graham McTavish (Vlad)."


https://www.buzzfeed.com/morganmurrell/best-anime-watch-netflix-hulu-amazon-prime?utm_term=.ksmRkvn8M#.cjj0Lvo9Z

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Halb Artikel, halb Review:

Zitat:
The Second Season For 'Castlevania' On Netflix Will Be Out Later This Year

Ollie Barder Contributor
Jun 24, 2018, 08:14am #BingeWatch



The second season of Netflix's 'Castlevania' will be out later this year.

With the news that the third season for Castlevania on Netflix has already been greenlit, it looks like the second season will be released later this year.

In a recent Tweet from Warren Ellis, who is the main writer behind the series, he explains that the second season of Castlevania has been delayed until later in the year.

However, while the delay is unfortunate the good news is that the second season will be double the length of the first and will have a total of 8 episodes this time around.

Originally, the second season was meant to be released sometime this Summer but it seems the team behind this need more time to finish the production properly.

The first season was solidly done though and I am definitely looking forward to seeing how the story progresses. It also has an excellent voice acting cast and I think having Richard Armitage portray Trevor Belmont was an inspired choice.

The series itself is based upon the story from Castlevania III: Dracula’s Curse, which was originally released on the NES back in 1989.

It featured four playable characters, Trevor Belmont, Sypha Belnades, Grant Danasty and Alucard. However, in this animated version, Grant has been dropped from the roster. Naturally, Dracula is the main antagonist again, but he is definitely a sympathetic villain, as his wrath is not without undue cause in this adaptation.

In the meantime, you can catch up on the first season of Castlevania over on Netflix.


https://www.forbes.com/sites/olliebarder/2018/06/24/the-second-season-for-castlevania-on-netflix-will-be-out-later-this-year/#6623bfab5bf7

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