Theatrical release poster

Cirque du Freak: The Vampire's Assistant is the 2009 film adaptation of the first three books of the book series, The Saga of Darren Shan, by author Darren Shan. The movie began filming on February 8, 2008 in New Orleans and wrapped up June 3, 2008. The film is distributed by Universal Studios. Some of the movie was filmed on a set constructed within New Orleans City Park, approximately 1000 feet off to the side of the road, along Harrison Avenue. The film was originally set for release on January 15, 2010, but was moved forward to October 23, 2009.

It is a very loose adaption, having little in common with the books other than the characters' names. 

Plot SummaryEdit

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The Vampire's Assistant is a fantasy-adventure about a teenager who unknowingly breaks a 100-year-old truce between two warring factions of vampires, a peaceful group called the Vampire Clan who don't kill their victims, and a group of stereotypical bloodsucking killers called the Vampaneze. Pulled into a fantastic life with misunderstood sideshow freaks and grotesque creatures of the night, one teen will vanish from the safety of a boring existence and fulfill his destiny in a place drawn from nightmare.

Movie photo galleryEdit





Cirque du Freak membersEdit


"Cirque du Freak: The Vampire's Assistant" was shot in New Orleans, the village of Folsom and Baton Rouge, Louisiana. Some of the characters required a great deal of prosthetics and makeup led by Steve Koch, Brian Sipe and Mark Garbarino. Prosthetics did not quite add the height needed on certain shots for the character of Mr. Tall played by Academy Award-nominated Ken Watanabe. Although Watanabe’s height of 6 feet is tall, a body double was cast for certain shots. Trevon Flores, a local basketball player, stands at 6-foot-10, 210-pounds and was used for certain shots to show the abnormal height of Mr. Tall. Additionally, Ken Watanabe utilized dialogue coaches Kathleen S. Dunn and Francie Brown in pre-production and production to further enhance his performance as the circus barker. The filmmakers will be taking advantage of computer-generated imagery to portray other fantasy elements.

Recently, John Marshall High School (Los Angeles) was used to film a few parts of the movie. They also used Lusher Charter School in New Orleans to shoot a couple of scenes from the film.

According to IMDb, filming of "Cirque du Freak: The Vampire's Assistant" was finished early in 2008 and the film was released on 23 October 2009.

The film is rated PG-13 for sequences of intense supernatural violence and action, disturbing images, thematic elements, and some language.

They also changed Darren's love interest, Debbie Hemlock, but because of so many complaints they claim they will bring her into one of the later films.


The sequel for the first movie was expected, with the vast being fully ready, however after the lack of budget the film got deleted from the database in the way states of production, making it only a dream for movie adaptation fans.


  • What drew John C. Reilly to play Larten Crepsley was "the fact that it was a real person, that he wasn't some supernatural mystical being that can turn into a vampire bat. The powers weren't so extreme that it was just another thing altogether, that this guy was a person who was alive in the 1800s who was essentially about my age. If you account the slow aging, he is forty something years old" he said.
  • The license plates of the purple car that drops the Cirque du Freak flyer use the European Union pattern for Germany: D for Deutschland (Germany in German) and a circle of twelve stars (European Union symbol).
  • Students who attended a school in which a few scenes of the movie were shot were cast as extras.
  • A portion of the film was shot in Studio 28 at Universal Studios in Los Angeles. It is the oldest sound stage still in use at the studio.
  • This is the first time Paul Weitz makes a film without help from his brother Chris Weitz
  • The movie Cirque du freak is based on a book series, written by Darren Shan. It consists of 12 books, but the movie only covers 3.


The score to "Cirque du Freak: The Vampire's Assistant" was composed by Stephen Trask, marking his third feature film with director Paul Weitz. He recorded his score with an 86-piece ensemble of the Hollywood Studio Symphony at the Newman Scoring Stage at 20th Century Fox.

External linksEdit

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