Anne Rice Fans Say Tom Cruise Lack the Bite to Play the Vampire Lestat

Article excerpt

I KNOW "Interview With the Vampire" is going to be a real horror movie.

Tom Cruise has been cast as the Vampire Lestat.

If you've read Anne Rice's Vampire Chronicles, you know this choice is chilling.

Cruise should "do himself and everyone else a service and withdraw," author Rice told the LA Times. He was too "mom and apple pie."

Wrong, Anne. Cruise isn't apple pie. He's ham on white. He hasn't the range or the face for Lestat.

Lestat is androgynous and sensual. He describes himself this way in one book:

"I have thick blond hair, not quite shoulder length, and rather curly, which appears white under fluorescent light. My eyes are gray . . . and I have a fairly short, narrow nose, and a mouth that is well shaped but just a little too big for my face. It can look very mean, or extremely generous, my mouth. It always looks sensual."

I ask you, is that the boyish, brown-haired Cruise?

Cruise is a nice American boy, not an evil European. He was perfect as a lawyer in "The Firm." His idea of evil is cheating on his expense account.

Anne Rice isn't the only one who's upset. Her fans are ready to bust a blood vessel.

"I love Tom Cruise," Marilyn Koehr said, "but not as Lestat. It's like Don Knotts as the Terminator."

Teen-age girls think he's sexy. Grown women think he's boring.

"Tom Cruise is the man you take home to Momma. Lestat is the man you don't want Momma to know about."

Rice fan Susan Stegeman says there's a place for Cruise in the movie.

"He'd be perfect for the other big role, the Vampire Louis. Louis has dark, curly hair like Cruise. The book says Louis' face was `as seemingly inanimate as a statue.'

"That's Tom Cruise," said Susan. "That's his acting."

Susan doesn't think Cruise would play the real Lestat. "They changed the movie version of `The Firm' so he could be a good guy. Do you think he's going to kill babies and suck men's necks in a vampire movie?"

Hollywood men are lousy at understanding what makes a man sexy. They thought Clark Gable had big ears and Bogart was funny-looking.

We knew better.

"A man cast Cruise," Marilyn said. "No woman would ever make that mistake. If the director isn't sure who'd make a good Lestat, he should ask his secretary."

You can't really blame movie men for not understanding Lestat. …