Royal Blood

Behind a beautiful face lurks the greatest evil of all.


synopsis

In the late fifteen hundreds, ELIZABETH BATHORY (11) lives in a vicious and violent world. The Ottoman Empire is constantly invading Bathory’s home country, engaging the Hungarian and Prussian armies in countless bloodbaths, with the Bathory family frequently front row witnesses to the atrocities of war. Alchemy and sorcery reign the spiritual consciousness on equal footing with Christianity, while the raging hostilities between Catholicism and emerging forms of Protestantism perpetuate unspeakable forms of torture to convert and punish those who fall on the wrong side of whichever faction has the upper hand at any given moment.

The only Bathory child to survive infancy and continue the family’s prominence, Elizabeth bears the burden of her cruel Calvinist mother’s ambitions and heartless punishments, and learns at an early age that, like most women of her era, her only value, her only source of power lay in her great beauty and appeal to men. 

The only source of genuine affection and protection for young Elizabeth is her nursemaid, DARVULIA (30), a devoted practitioner of witchcraft.  But even Darvulia’s spells cannot protect Elizabeth from her parents decision to bind the young girl in marriage to the COUNT NADASDY (16) whose brutal personality will only grow worse over time.

The story jumps ahead from the announcement of Elizabeth’s betrothal to thirty years later, immediately after the abusive Nadasdy’s death, when ELIZABETH (late 40s) discovers that the monster has bequeathed guardianship of their son, PAUL and the profits from all the lands he is to inherit when he comes of age, to the handsome COUNT IMRE MEGYERY (35). Even in death, Nadasdy continues to torment Elizabeth, taking away the child she loves and a major portion of the income needed to sustain her vast holdings.

Elizabeth tries to seduce Imre, but he isn’t interested in the attentions of a woman more than ten years his senior, no matter how lovely she may still be.  Her classical education, mastery of six languages, brilliant mind and her devotion to her child are of no consequence and in that moment, Elizabeth knows that her power is fading with the years and her desperation builds, forcing her to make her most fatal mistake, demanding the king repay the fortune he borrowed from her late husband.

The bright spot in Elizabeth's life is that the still adoring GREGOR PONIKENUSZ (late 40s) returns to the village, having left as a young teen to pursue his vocation in the church.  Gregor, now an experienced pastor and widower, returns to his home accompanied by his lovely daughter DORIA (15). Old friends quickly make Gregor aware of the strange events afflicting the village.  Young girls regularly disappear, or turn up dead under mysterious circumstances. The castle tries to pass off the deaths as the result of disease, but there are those who know better. They have seen the bodies drained of blood. While many believe it is the work of vampires, there are those who suspect the Countess's trusted servants; the deformed boy, FICZKO (16), the aging DARVULIA (60), and the hideously unattractive maid, HELENA JO (30). But no one, not even the authorities, will dare question those from the castle. What does it matter if the Countess’s servants torture and kill those of peasant stock? They belong to her, much like the cows in her fields. If she does not choose to punish her servants, no one else will.

When Imre becomes engaged to a much younger noblewoman, humiliating Elizabeth in the process and removing forever any hope of her reclaiming her son or control of his fortunes, the Countess’s decent into madness escalates, leaving a growing trail of victims and no one to stop her. 


the Real Countess Elizabeth Bathory

ROYAL BLOOD tells the astonishing and horrific true story of Countess Elizabeth Bathory, the infamous “Blood Countess” of Hungary. An inspiration for Bram Stoker’s classic novel Dracula, Elizabeth was obsessed with retaining her youthful beauty. In an age when sorcery and alchemy were given as much credence as religion, Elizabeth was accused of using the blood of her servant girls to preserve her youth and beauty.  Three of her most trusted servants "confessed" under extreme torture to torturing and murdering 350 to 550 young women and were put to death. Because of her royal blood Elizabeth was never tried or allowed to answer her accusers.  Instead she was enclosed in her room in Cachtice Castle, her only connection to the outside world a small slit through which food and waste were passed until she died four years later.


AUDIENCE

Based on purported events in the life of Elizabeth Bathory, a well-known late Renaissance European figure and legend, ROYAL BLOOD will have major international audience appeal, particularly in key European markets and in America. It will appeal to the millions who annually attend medieval/Renaissance fairs or who otherwise have a fascination with this popular era of history. Additionally, ROYAL BLOOD will appeal to fans of upscale horror/thriller/serial killer movies. And the film will also appeal to Women 25-54 who support movies about powerful female characters.

For the 4th year in a row, women makeup majority of movie audiences (52%). Female audiences can drive blockbusters.

Hunger Games: Catching Fire (54%)

Pitch Perfect (72%)

The Purge (56%)

The Great Gatsby (59%)

Women account for 64% of total time spent watching Hulu and Netflix, 58% of Netflix users are under the age of 34. Women make up the majority of both Hulu and Netflix users. (57% and 59% respectively)