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Why Clemens From The Last Voyage Of The Demeter Looks So Familiar

Is there a doctor on board? Because someone needs to confirm just how many dead people pile up in "The Last Voyage of the Demeter," the André Øvredal-directed movie that expands on one of the most important chapters in horror history. An "Alien"-like tale set in the Victorian era, the film follows the sea-based swan song of the titular vessel as it travels from Romania to London. The journey hits murky waters when it's discovered that there is one extra passenger on board and that it's none other than Transylvanian no-longer-living legend Count Dracula.

Among the various characters that have come aboard the ship as unsuspecting meals for the fanged fiend is Clemens, a Cambridge-educated doctor who soon takes up arms when he finds that the crew is dropping like flies and getting a bit hot and bothered in front of direct sunlight. Much like the Captain of the ship (Liam Cunningham), the benefit here is that the star bringing Clemens to life is an actor with experience with undead things and monsters of myth and legend: Corey Hawkins. Long before he faced off against both, though, he stepped into the shoes of a living legend in one of the most successful musical biopics ever made.

Before he was Dr. Clemens, Corey Hawkins was Dr. Dre in Straight Outta Compton

In a biopic that was littered with pitch-perfect casting, Corey Hawkins was appointed a coveted role when he was cast as Dr. Dre in the F. Gary Gray film, "Straight Outta Compton." Chronicling the rise and eventual breakup of N.W.A., Hawkins starred alongside Jason Mitchell as Eazy-E and O'Shea Jackson as his real-life father, Ice Cube. 

The film is the second biggest music biopic of all time, trailing closely behind the Freddie Mercury-focused film "Bohemian Rhapsody." Understandably, pressure came with the part since it was linked to one of the defining eras in modern music history, but thankfully, Hawkins got reassurance from the man himself that he was the right person for the job.

Speaking to Dujour about his concern about the gig, Hawkins admitted, "I didn't want to be the one to mess it up. I was like, 'I can never show my face in California or L.A. again.'" It was a doctor's opinion that thankfully cleared things up, though. "He [Dr. Dre] said, 'You're the man for the job,' and he had my audition on his iPhone," Hawkins recalled. "It was one of those things where it's like I have a responsibility now, and I love to be the underdog."

Corey Hawkins held his own against zombies in The Walking Dead

Around the same time Hawkins was being a rap icon, he was also holding off droves of zombies in AMC's long-running (or should that be shuffling) series, "The Walking Dead." Debuting in Season 6, Episode 1, Hawkins played Heath, a supply runner for the Alexandria Safe-Zone who struggled with the new world order of things (or lack thereof). Hawkins was present on the show for two seasons but only appeared in five episodes. 

Among the many storylines that disappeared without explanation in a world of factions and flesh-munching monsters, Heath was caught by Scavengers and traded to the CRM for supplies, with his whereabouts still unknown. As revealed by showrunner Angela Kang to Insider, though, it was Hawkins' Hollywood trajectory that led to Heath vanishing without a trace. "We had to write the wonderful Corey Hawkins out because he had huge opportunities in the feature film world." 

She wasn't wrong. After already excelling following his turn in "Straight Outta Compton," Hawkins went on to take a "huge" opportunity of epic proportions in one of the more favored MonsterVerse entries that mixed Apocalypse Now with apes.

Corey Hawkins took an ill-fated trip to Kong: Skull Island

Still standing as one of the most popular entries in the revived MonsterVerse films, Hawkins was one of the many strangers in a foreign land guarded by an enormous protector in "Kong: Skull Island." Directed by Jordan Vogt-Roberts, Hawkins played yet another doctor, this time the young and understandably uneasy Dr. Houston Brooks who joined the crew headed to the mysterious island. 

As one of the only survivors following the events of "Skull Island," the character would go on to return in "Godzilla: King of the Monsters," that time played by Joe Morton as an older version of the character. But even if the timeline might've propelled audiences forward by decades with his character being recast, Hawkins still had a love for a character he was keen to return to. 

In an interview with Screen Rant, he expressed his interest in how the MonsterVerse would progress and if he could still be a part of it. "I was like, how are they going to continue the storyline and to have him play the older version of me was ... I was like, 'oh my god ... ' And I'm excited to see where they continue it and if there's any flashbacks." Currently, the only project on the earth-shaking slate with the MonsterVerse is "Godzilla and the Titans" hosting the epic father-son duo of Wyatt and Kurt Russell. While there's no mention of Brooks returning, it would be an unexpected cameo that could provide a small bit of fortification in a very big way.

Corey Hawkins was the hero on the clock in 24: Legacy

Stepping in to save the day in place of Jack Bauer, Corey Hawkins was the hero of the hour in the stand-alone series, "24: Legacy," a short-lived revival of the "24" franchise set three years after the events of "24: Live Another Day." Hawkins played Eric Carter, an ex-Army Ranger who goes on the run after learning that his squad is being hunted down. He soon finds himself allying with the dimly lit offices of CTU while taking down a shady terrorist sleeper cell.

The show was met with a relatively warm reception, earning 60% on Rotten Tomatoes, and while the pressure was understandably on Hawkins to, in a way, take over from CTU's best agent, there was a bigger picture he was looking to instead. "I knew that it would be a challenge in that I really had to invest fully in this. It wasn't a, 'Oh, this will be great for my career moment,' he told Collider. "This is an opportunity, in terms of the totality, in terms of television, in terms of the boundaries we're pushing, and in terms of really stretching myself." 

That certainly appeared as a common trend in Hawkins' career, particularly a few years later, when he jumped into one of the most successful musicals in recent years.

Corey Hawkins made the call and headed Into The Heights

After battling giant apes and fighting back armies of the undead, Hawkins finally had himself a bit of a breather when he joined the cast of Lin Manuel Miranda's "In The Heights." Starring alongside actors like Anthony Ramos and Melissa Barrera, the film was adapted from the Broadway show of the same name and was released both in theaters and on HBO Max. As best pal to Ramos' Usnavi, Hawkins played Benny, a hard-working cab wrangler who rekindles his love with childhood crush Nina (Leslie Grace).

The film earned sterling reviews and nabbed 98% on Rotten Tomatoes. For Hawkins, he saw the film as a great opportunity and one that broke more ground for stories and the stars involved to gain more exposure than they had before. Speaking to Esquire, he revealed how Miranda providing a path for Ramos was something he wanted to embrace and factor in with his future projects. "It's about creating space for each other," he explained. "Hopefully, it makes it easier for the next kid to come around."