Ever since Dracula was trying to seduce and turn the likes of Mina and Lucy in Bram Stoker’s novel, there has always been a strange eroticism associated with vampires.
Most vampire movies involve some level of romance or sexuality, and nowhere is it as overt as in 1995’s Embrace of the Vampire.
So, in honor of its 25th anniversary today, here are 25 fun facts about Embrace of the Vampire!
1. Embrace of the Vampire was Anne Goursaud’s directorial debut. She had primarily worked as an editor, having editing Bram Stoker’s Dracula back in 1992.
2. This wasn’t Martin Kemp’s first time portraying a figure of classic horror. Before playing the titular vampire in this movie, he played Baron von Frankenstein in 1992’s Waxwork II: Lost in Time, opposite Zach Galligan (Gremlins) and Bruce Campbell (Evil Dead).
3. 1995 was quite the year for vampire movies. In addition to Embrace of the Vampire, Dracula: Dead and Loving It and Vampire in Brooklyn came out the same year.
4. One of the production companies which produced the movie was Ministry of Film, who specialized in softcore adult movies, which should come as a surprise to one…
5. The entire shooting process was done in an impressive 13 days.
6. During filming, a crew member allegedly told Martin Kemp how impressive the makeup was to give him the bulging veins in his head. However, it was actually the result of a brain tumor, which he had removed after shooting, and even took a break from acting to recover from.
7. Martin Kemp’s sister-in-law (at the time, but divorced Kemp’s brother in 1997), Sadie Frost appeared in Bram Stoker’s Dracula, playing Lucy Westenra, who eventually turned into a vampire herself.
8. We never actually learn the name Martin Kemp’s character. He’s simply credited as “The Vampire”.
9. It features a variety of actresses who would go on to star in bigger horror films including: Jennifer Tilly (Bride of Chucky), Jordan Ladd (Cabin Fever), and Rachel True (The Craft).
10. The movie’s composer, Joseph Williams would go on to compose the scores for TV series like Felicity and Roswell. Plus, he was even (young adult) Simba’s singing voice in The Lion King!
11. While the Ankh is a well-known ancient Egyptian symbol of life, the sexual meaning that the movie leans heavily on is really more of a modern theory. One which is often shot down by experts.
12. Despite being a direct-to-video release, the movie was shot on 35mm film rather than video, which was typically more common for movies not getting a theatrical release.
13. Most of the movie was filmed at Shattuck-St. Mary’s School in Faribault, MN. It’s an Episcopal, co-ed, boarding school founded in 1858, and it’s still in operation today.
14. However, this wasn’t the only film shot there. D3: The Mighty Ducks also made use of the location.
15. The town of Faribault itself was also a filming location for Grumpy Old Men.
16. During the infamous orgy scene, Anne Goursaud cast mostly real life couples (most of whom were college students) so they would feel more comfortable with each other.
17. The movie was very much a “box office” success, despite never getting released theatrically. It made roughly $15 million on video sales/rentals on a budget of only $500,000.
18. There was an unrated version released, which is about a minute longer. This is highly unusual for a direct-to-video release as most just release their unrated versions from the start. There was no need to placate the MPAA to get an “R” rating for the theatrical release because there wasn’t one…
19. Alyssa Milano’s boyfriend Chris, played by Harold Pruett (credited as Harrison), tragically died of an accidental drug overdose in 2002 at the age of 32.
20. It was never screened or reviewed by any major critics, even boasting zero critic reviews on Rotten Tomatoes. The Audience Score however, is quite low, with only a 28% on the site, as well as a 4.4/10 rating on IMDB.
21. Alyssa Milano later expressed some regret at the numerous nude scenes, feeling like she didn’t have full control. However, a year later she and Anne Goursaud would reunite for another erotic thriller, Poison Ivy II. To be fair however, Milano did say that having a female director for both did make her more comfortable.
22. Embrace of the Vampire was featured in the 2019 Shudder documentary Horror Noire, albeit for not the best reason. Rachel True was interviewed for the documentary and referred to this movie as another time in the 90’s that she (an African American actress) only got to play the “best friend” to a Caucasian protagonist.
23. Anne Goursaud would go on to direct only two more movies, both erotic thrillers (Poison Ivy II and Another 9½ Weeks). She then returned to editing for the rest of her career.
24. Horror host Svengoolie performed a song titled, “Ode to Alyssa Milano” when he featured Embrace of the Vampire on his show in 2003.
25. There was an inevitable remake in 2013, starring Sharon Hinnendael. It received mixed reviews, with many comparing it to a more adult version of Twilight.
Which of these did you find interesting? Were there any that you already knew? Let us know in the comments!
Embrace of the Vampire is currently streaming on Tubi
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