Director: Timur Bekmambetov
Stars: Benjamin Walker, Mary Elizabeth Winstead, Rufus Sewell, Dominic Cooper, Alan Tudyk, Jimmi Simpson, Anthony Mackie, Robin McLeavy
Release date: June 22

It’s certainly this summer’s riskiest and craziest popcorn movie: Based on Seth Grahame-Smith’s historical fiction/horror novel of the same name, Abraham Lincoln: Vampire Hunter re-imagines the former president’s life before he entered the White House in 1861, presenting Honest Abe as an axe-wielding, martial-arts-savvy defender of the night who specializes in offing undead bloodsuckers.

True, Abraham Lincoln: Vampire Hunter is as dangerously high-concept as last year’s ultimately disastrous Cowboys and Aliens, but there are several factors at play here that instill much confidence. For one, it’s directed by Timur Bekmambetov, a visual extremist whose box office hit Wanted proved that he could pull off the insanity of his 2004 cult favorite, Night Watch, with known actors. And the cast itself is a big plus, too, including frequent scene-stealers Anthony Mackie and Dominic Cooper, as well as genre actress extraordinaire Mary Elizabeth Winstead.

Assuming that Bekmambetov and producer Tim Burton can follow through on the massive-in-scope promise of the film’s impressive trailers, Abraham Lincoln: Vampire Hunter could very well be one of the summer’s biggest surprises.