The evil Count Olaf of Lemony Snicket’s A Series of Unfortunate Events has come to the screen before, but he’ll get a new spin with Neil Patrick Harris portraying him in the latest adaptation. Netflix has released a new teaser for the upcoming series, and the minute-long preview centers on the diabolical character.
The series, which is based on Daniel Handler’s beloved books, centers on three young orphans — Violet, Kalus, and Sunny — who are left in the care of the cruel count. Olaf is determined to gain control of their inheritance, and they have to do their best to stop him as they try to figure out how their parents died. The new teaser shows just how dangerous their enemy is, labeling him as “horrible,” “awful,” a “villain,” a “wretch,” and worse — just in case there was any doubt.
Based on the teaser (and what we know from the books and previous adaptations), we’ll see Count Olaf attempt all kinds of manipulative tricks to get his hands on the kids’ fortune. “He’s in disguise and he’s trying to take us away,” we hear Violet (Malina Weissman) say at one point.
Harris is best known for comedic roles, including Barney Stinson in How I Met Your Mother (not to mention the title character in Dougie Howser, M.D.), but he has taken on dark roles in the past. He appeared in the 2014 psychological thriller Gone Girl, for example. A Series of Unfortunate Events will give him another chance to play a troubling character.
In addition to Harris and Weissman, the adaptation stars Joan Cusack, Patrick Warburton, and Louis Haynes. The series is executive produced by Handler himself alongside Barry Sonnenfeld.
All eight episodes of Lemony Snicket’s A Series of Unfortunate Events will premiere on Netflix on Friday, January 13.