Anne Rice’s Interview With the Vampire Shows a More Complex Louis


AMC Anne Rice Interview with the Vampire changes some things from the original material. In particular, it changes the time period of the story’s predominant flashback, causing a major change for the protagonist, Louis de Pointe du Lac.

Once portrayed by Brad Pitt in the 1994 film adaptation, actor Jacob Anderson’s Louis is a light-skinned gay black man who exists in early 20th-century New Orleans. This gives the story several new themes, resulting in a version of Louis that is a bit more complex as a character. That’s how this new take on the Anne Rice story gives Mr. du Lac a little more depth than before.

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Brad Pitt’s Louis de Pointe du Lac was very different from Jacob Anderson’s

In the book and film version of Interview with the Vampire, Louis de Pointe du Lac lives with his family on a large plantation in New Orleans in the late 1700s, having moved there from Paris when Louis was young. His main conflict in his adulthood is his growing enmity with his religious brother, who dies after one of his fights. This sends Louis into a suicidal depression, though the charm he displays to the vampire Lestat de Lioncourt ends up saving and cursing him.

By contrast, the version seen in the AMC TV adaptation is very different, namely by living in early 20th century New Orleans as a black man. Instead of earning his fortune through an indigo plantation, he supports his family through all kinds of debauchery in a red light district. Another major change is that Louis on the show is an outspoken gay character, even before he met Lestat. This makes for a much more contradictory Louis de Pointe du Lac, living life in the closet from various angles.

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AMC’s interview with the vampire turns Louis into an outcast

Even in supposedly more integrated New Orleans, Louis’s mere existence in the city in the early 1900s means he will never be truly respectable, regardless of his growing influence and wealth. In the show’s first episode, he is mocked and referred to as a racial slur by a drunken brothel patron, despite the fact that this individual has just “sponsored” a woman of clearly mixed-race descent. Louis hates the harshness with which he must treat those around him, including his own brother, but he knows that staying in power in the red-light district is necessary. His feud with his brother alienates him further and further from his family, and his burgeoning sexuality only widens this gap.

This puts him at odds with society as a whole from several angles, not helped by his later vampirism. The color of his skin, his sexuality and his very genetic make him incapable of belonging to his time; he is the perfect guy to start flirting with Lestat. Lestat does not care about the norms or rules of society, as he considers humanity to be below him. Also, his own past has made him despise the notion of family, making him an even bigger reverse of Louis.

These contrasting ideologies and mindsets bring Lestat and Louis closer together, allowing Louis to escape the confines that society had hitherto imposed on him. Unfortunately, as he grows closer to Lestat, Louis begins to lose his family and his humanity. He resents this and enjoys the power vampirism gives him, still finding himself trapped in an overwhelming paradox of desires. These conflicting agendas go beyond the eventual disdain for vampirism felt by the film version of Louis, perhaps making the one seen on AMC Interview with the Vampire the best written incarnation.

To see this more complex version of Louis de Pointe du Lac, Anne Rice’s Interview with the Vampire premieres new episodes every Sunday on AMC+.

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