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Robert Pattinson Is (Gulp) Distantly Related to Dracula

Robert Pattinson Is (Gulp) Distantly Related to Dracula
Robert Pattinson (left) and his great ancestor, Vlad the Impaler
Splash News Online; Getty

06/24/2010 AT 12:15 PM EDT

Not to sound batty, but it appears vampire blood may really run through Robert Pattinson's veins.

Genealogists this week said they believe the Twilight star, 24, is related to the notorious 15th-century ruler Vlad IV Tzepesch ... better known as Vlad the Impaler, widely considered to be the inspiration for the title character in author Bram Stoker's classic tale of darkness, Dracula.

According to the family history Web site Ancestry.com, researchers discovered that the English actor and the world's most famous vampire are related through, of all people, the British Royal Family.





In fact, insist the Ancestry experts, Princes William and Harry are Pattinson's distant cousins, while ol' Vlad was their distant uncle.

"Tracing Pattinson's family back to Vlad was difficult research, but the pieces that unraveled created the perfect accompaniment to the Twilight Saga," says Anastasia Tyler, a genealogist at Ancestry.com. "Without any myth or magic, we find royalty and vampires lurking in Pattinson's life – making his story just as supernatural as the one he's playing on screen."

Just in case you've been living under a rock – or in your coffin – for the past few weeks, the third installment in the series, The Twilight Saga: Eclipse, opens nationwide June 30.

Pattinson plays love-sick vampire Edward Cullen in the franchise, based on the novels by author Stephenie Meyer – who, it so happens, is also related to dear Count Drac, claims Ancestry.

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