ArtsAutosBooksBusinessEducationEntertainmentFamilyFashionFoodGamesGenderHealthHolidaysHomeHubPagesPersonal FinancePetsPoliticsReligionSportsTechnologyTravel

How Does Calcutt's Drama Adaptation of Dracula Differ From Other Interpretations?

Updated on June 3, 2016

David Calcutt's Adaptation

David Calcutt’s adaptation of Dracula differs in many ways from other interpretations. It lacks any frightening aspect as in the prologue, we are convinced to believe Dracula is a lonely old man, therefore making the entire story mild as you feel sorry for Dracula. This minimises the conflict, and you cannot have a drama story without conflict. This essay will include similarities and differences between David Calcutt’s drama adaptation, Todd Browning's film starring Bela Lugosi as Dracula filmed in nineteen-thirty one, and other interpretations.

Dracula is a story about a vampire living in Transylvania, trying to find a new life for himself in England. He converts Lucy to vampirism, and tries to convert Mina as well. In the end, Professor Van Helsing, an expert on vampires, teaches the others about how to defeat them and Dracula disappears.



The first and most influential difference between Calcutt’s version and the original is that Calcutt wrote his version for a key stage three audience. This heavily influences the difficulty of the dialogue, making Dracula more of a children’s book than the adult storyline most people know. Calcutt’s version has been edited and reduced to suit a younger audience, whereas the film is descriptive and contains complex sentences.

Another difference is that in the film, newspapers are shown to convey the story to the audience. However, in Calcutt’s version, he uses a news reporter. I feel that using a news reporter to convey the story is much better than just a newspaper, as you do not have to read lots. A film is meant to be the opposite of a book, not filled with writing you have to read.

A key difference is that in the film the characters of Renfield and Jonathan Harker are mixed up in a confusing way. Harker is still a solicitor, but it is he, not Renfield that goes mad. In the play though, Renfield is shown near the beginning of the story to already be mad and in Dracula’s control.

In the play, the characters manage to deter Dracula from biting Mina. However, in the film they do not succeed, and Mina dies after 1 bite. This is contradictory to the original story, where Mina is also not infected. As to why this happens, I am not sure. It might have been because in the film, they are trying to make Dracula appear as more of a threat to human life. Again, the play fails to appeal to any audience other than small children due to its low conflict rate.


In both the original story and in Calcutt’s play, garlic is used to fend off vampires. Albeit in the film, Wolfbain is used. This might have been because they had no garlic or maybe one of the actors was allergic to it. Either way, it doesn’t really affect the storyline at all.

In both the play and the film, we see limited special effects. This is partly due to the age of the film (filmed in 1931), and partly to the amateur actors. This makes both versions much less interesting, and severely decreases the appeal to a wider audience.

Both Calcutt and the film say that technology and medicine are powerless against Dracula. This shows that they both want the story to go on into a longer method of resolution. If technology and medicine were not powerless against Dracula, it would be a much shorter story.

Other Interpretations

Other interpretations of Dracula include the film directed by Francis Ford Coppala and starring Gary Oldman. It also does not include Mina being infected, only Lucy. It uses lots of special effects, therefore making the film superior both intellectually and frighteningly gripping. In the book and in Todd Browning’s film there were little or no special effects. Without them, everything appears dull and uninspiring due to being so unrealistic. It was filmed in 1992, which even though is a long way from today’s modern technology; it is also far from 1931 when special effects were at a minimum.


In conclusion, David Calcutt’s version of Dracula differs in many ways from other interpretations; most importantly the fact that his version has a target audience of key stage three and therefore has in the main, a simplified monosyllabic text. Calcutt minimises the conflict by saying at the beginning that Dracula is just a lonely old man, and you cannot have any kind of drama play, film or book without conflict.


    0 of 8192 characters used
    Post Comment

    No comments yet.


    This website uses cookies

    As a user in the EEA, your approval is needed on a few things. To provide a better website experience, uses cookies (and other similar technologies) and may collect, process, and share personal data. Please choose which areas of our service you consent to our doing so.

    For more information on managing or withdrawing consents and how we handle data, visit our Privacy Policy at:

    Show Details
    HubPages Device IDThis is used to identify particular browsers or devices when the access the service, and is used for security reasons.
    LoginThis is necessary to sign in to the HubPages Service.
    Google RecaptchaThis is used to prevent bots and spam. (Privacy Policy)
    AkismetThis is used to detect comment spam. (Privacy Policy)
    HubPages Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide data on traffic to our website, all personally identifyable data is anonymized. (Privacy Policy)
    HubPages Traffic PixelThis is used to collect data on traffic to articles and other pages on our site. Unless you are signed in to a HubPages account, all personally identifiable information is anonymized.
    Amazon Web ServicesThis is a cloud services platform that we used to host our service. (Privacy Policy)
    CloudflareThis is a cloud CDN service that we use to efficiently deliver files required for our service to operate such as javascript, cascading style sheets, images, and videos. (Privacy Policy)
    Google Hosted LibrariesJavascript software libraries such as jQuery are loaded at endpoints on the or domains, for performance and efficiency reasons. (Privacy Policy)
    Google Custom SearchThis is feature allows you to search the site. (Privacy Policy)
    Google MapsSome articles have Google Maps embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    Google ChartsThis is used to display charts and graphs on articles and the author center. (Privacy Policy)
    Google AdSense Host APIThis service allows you to sign up for or associate a Google AdSense account with HubPages, so that you can earn money from ads on your articles. No data is shared unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    Google YouTubeSome articles have YouTube videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    VimeoSome articles have Vimeo videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    PaypalThis is used for a registered author who enrolls in the HubPages Earnings program and requests to be paid via PayPal. No data is shared with Paypal unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    Facebook LoginYou can use this to streamline signing up for, or signing in to your Hubpages account. No data is shared with Facebook unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    MavenThis supports the Maven widget and search functionality. (Privacy Policy)
    Google AdSenseThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Google DoubleClickGoogle provides ad serving technology and runs an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Index ExchangeThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    SovrnThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Facebook AdsThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Amazon Unified Ad MarketplaceThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    AppNexusThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    OpenxThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Rubicon ProjectThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    TripleLiftThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Say MediaWe partner with Say Media to deliver ad campaigns on our sites. (Privacy Policy)
    Remarketing PixelsWe may use remarketing pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to advertise the HubPages Service to people that have visited our sites.
    Conversion Tracking PixelsWe may use conversion tracking pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to identify when an advertisement has successfully resulted in the desired action, such as signing up for the HubPages Service or publishing an article on the HubPages Service.
    Author Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide traffic data and reports to the authors of articles on the HubPages Service. (Privacy Policy)
    ComscoreComScore is a media measurement and analytics company providing marketing data and analytics to enterprises, media and advertising agencies, and publishers. Non-consent will result in ComScore only processing obfuscated personal data. (Privacy Policy)
    Amazon Tracking PixelSome articles display amazon products as part of the Amazon Affiliate program, this pixel provides traffic statistics for those products (Privacy Policy)