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This answer contains numerous spoilers for Underworld: Evolution.

Marcus was the first and oldest vampire, the ancestor of all other vampires. He was therefore older asbecame a vampire earlier than Viktor. According to the Underworld Wiki article on Viktor, the production notes and novelizations of the films differ on who was born earlier as a mortal.

Marcus told Viktor that if he (Marcus) or William (the first werewolf) died, then all of their descendents would die with them. We know that this isn’t true, because

Marcus and William both died near the end of Underworld: Evolution and their descendants lived on.

Explanation from Andreas Tanis

Andreas Tanis, the exiled historian for the vampires, explains a few things in Underworld: Evolution (52 minutes into the film) about why Marcus turned Viktor, and the origin of the myth that Marcus and William had to remain alive (emphasis mine):

Toward the end of his ruthless life, when the next breath meant more to Viktor than silver or gold, Marcus came with an offer, a reprieve from sickness and death. Immortality. And in return, Viktor was to use his army turned Immortal to help him ... to defeat the very first werewolves. A dangerous and very infectious breed ... raging monsters, never able to take human form again. ...

So once Viktor’s army was turned, the legions of vampires under his control tracked down and destroyed the animals, then captured William and locked him away ... for the very same reason that Viktor never conspired against Marcus: fear. He was warned that should Marcus ever be killed, all those in his bloodline would follow him to the grave. ... A clever deception, but one Viktor was hardly willing to put to the test. And so Marcus was protected at all costs.
—Andreas Tanis

Andreas Tanis
Andreas Tanis

By turning Viktor, Marcus not only gained a powerful warlord as an ally, but also Viktor’s army. This gave the vampires the force they needed to fight back the first generation of werewolves. However, since Viktor was personally more powerful than Marcus, Viktor ended up taking control, making Marcus subordinate to him. Viktor eventually claimed to be the oldest vampire, exiled the historian, and forbade anyone from looking into the past to prevent them from discovering the truth.

Another consideration is that once Viktor’s army was turned, the coven gained hundreds or thousands of vampires whose primary loyalty was with Viktor. Even if Marcus had decided to kill Viktor, he would have to contend with an army of angry vampires who would be unlikely to accept Marcus’s rule, if anyone found out that Marcus had killed him.

Production notes

This is explained further in the Underworld: Evolution Production Notes (emphasis mine):

Viktor ... was merely a usurper. “I was the first,” declares Tony Curran of Marcus, “but it doesn’t mean I was the most powerful. I was an arrogant young vampire; Viktor was a powerful man and when he became a vampire, being older and more experienced, he took over the leadership.” Viktor then used his power to wage war on the werewolves who at the time were far more destructive and uncontrollable than their later progeny.

This answer contains numerous spoilers for Underworld: Evolution.

Marcus was the first and oldest vampire, the ancestor of all other vampires. He was therefore older as a vampire than Viktor. According to the Underworld Wiki article on Viktor, the production notes and novelizations of the films differ on who was born earlier as a mortal.

Marcus told Viktor that if he (Marcus) or William (the first werewolf) died, then all of their descendents would die with them. We know that this isn’t true, because

Marcus and William both died near the end of Underworld: Evolution and their descendants lived on.

Explanation from Andreas Tanis

Andreas Tanis, the exiled historian for the vampires, explains a few things in Underworld: Evolution (52 minutes into the film) about why Marcus turned Viktor, and the origin of the myth that Marcus and William had to remain alive (emphasis mine):

Toward the end of his ruthless life, when the next breath meant more to Viktor than silver or gold, Marcus came with an offer, a reprieve from sickness and death. Immortality. And in return, Viktor was to use his army turned Immortal to help him ... to defeat the very first werewolves. A dangerous and very infectious breed ... raging monsters, never able to take human form again. ...

So once Viktor’s army was turned, the legions of vampires under his control tracked down and destroyed the animals, then captured William and locked him away ... for the very same reason that Viktor never conspired against Marcus: fear. He was warned that should Marcus ever be killed, all those in his bloodline would follow him to the grave. ... A clever deception, but one Viktor was hardly willing to put to the test. And so Marcus was protected at all costs.
—Andreas Tanis

Andreas Tanis
Andreas Tanis

By turning Viktor, Marcus not only gained a powerful warlord as an ally, but also Viktor’s army. This gave the vampires the force they needed to fight back the first generation of werewolves. However, since Viktor was personally more powerful than Marcus, Viktor ended up taking control, making Marcus subordinate to him. Viktor eventually claimed to be the oldest vampire, exiled the historian, and forbade anyone from looking into the past to prevent them from discovering the truth.

Another consideration is that once Viktor’s army was turned, the coven gained hundreds or thousands of vampires whose primary loyalty was with Viktor. Even if Marcus had decided to kill Viktor, he would have to contend with an army of angry vampires who would be unlikely to accept Marcus’s rule, if anyone found out that Marcus had killed him.

Production notes

This is explained further in the Underworld: Evolution Production Notes (emphasis mine):

Viktor ... was merely a usurper. “I was the first,” declares Tony Curran of Marcus, “but it doesn’t mean I was the most powerful. I was an arrogant young vampire; Viktor was a powerful man and when he became a vampire, being older and more experienced, he took over the leadership.” Viktor then used his power to wage war on the werewolves who at the time were far more destructive and uncontrollable than their later progeny.

This answer contains numerous spoilers for Underworld: Evolution.

Marcus was the first and oldest vampire, the ancestor of all other vampires. He therefore became a vampire earlier than Viktor. According to the Underworld Wiki article on Viktor, the production notes and novelizations of the films differ on who was born earlier.

Marcus told Viktor that if he (Marcus) or William (the first werewolf) died, then all of their descendents would die with them. We know that this isn’t true, because

Marcus and William both died near the end of Underworld: Evolution and their descendants lived on.

Explanation from Andreas Tanis

Andreas Tanis, the exiled historian for the vampires, explains a few things in Underworld: Evolution (52 minutes into the film) about why Marcus turned Viktor, and the origin of the myth that Marcus and William had to remain alive (emphasis mine):

Toward the end of his ruthless life, when the next breath meant more to Viktor than silver or gold, Marcus came with an offer, a reprieve from sickness and death. Immortality. And in return, Viktor was to use his army turned Immortal to help him ... to defeat the very first werewolves. A dangerous and very infectious breed ... raging monsters, never able to take human form again. ...

So once Viktor’s army was turned, the legions of vampires under his control tracked down and destroyed the animals, then captured William and locked him away ... for the very same reason that Viktor never conspired against Marcus: fear. He was warned that should Marcus ever be killed, all those in his bloodline would follow him to the grave. ... A clever deception, but one Viktor was hardly willing to put to the test. And so Marcus was protected at all costs.
—Andreas Tanis

Andreas Tanis
Andreas Tanis

By turning Viktor, Marcus not only gained a powerful warlord as an ally, but also Viktor’s army. This gave the vampires the force they needed to fight back the first generation of werewolves. However, since Viktor was personally more powerful than Marcus, Viktor ended up taking control, making Marcus subordinate to him. Viktor eventually claimed to be the oldest vampire, exiled the historian, and forbade anyone from looking into the past to prevent them from discovering the truth.

Another consideration is that once Viktor’s army was turned, the coven gained hundreds or thousands of vampires whose primary loyalty was with Viktor. Even if Marcus had decided to kill Viktor, he would have to contend with an army of angry vampires who would be unlikely to accept Marcus’s rule, if anyone found out that Marcus had killed him.

Production notes

This is explained further in the Underworld: Evolution Production Notes (emphasis mine):

Viktor ... was merely a usurper. “I was the first,” declares Tony Curran of Marcus, “but it doesn’t mean I was the most powerful. I was an arrogant young vampire; Viktor was a powerful man and when he became a vampire, being older and more experienced, he took over the leadership.” Viktor then used his power to wage war on the werewolves who at the time were far more destructive and uncontrollable than their later progeny.

3 vampire armies are bad news
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This answer contains numerous spoilers for Underworld: Evolution.

Marcus was the first and oldest vampire, the ancestor of all other vampires. He was therefore older as a vampire than Viktor. According to the Underworld Wiki article on Viktor, the production notes and novelizations of the films differ on who was born earlier as a mortal.

Marcus told Viktor that if he (Marcus) or William (the first werewolf) died, then all of their descendents would die with them. We know that this isn’t true, because

Marcus and William both died near the end of Underworld: Evolution and their descendants lived on.

Explanation from Andreas Tanis

Andreas Tanis, the exiled historian for the vampires, explains a few things in Underworld: Evolution (52 minutes into the film) about why Marcus turned Viktor, and the origin of the myth that Marcus and William had to remain alive (emphasis mine):

Toward the end of his ruthless life, when the next breath meant more to Viktor than silver or gold, Marcus came with an offer, a reprieve from sickness and death. Immortality. And in return, Viktor was to use his army turned Immortal to help him ... to defeat the very first werewolves. A dangerous and very infectious breed ... raging monsters, never able to take human form again. ...

So once Viktor’s army was turned, the legions of vampires under his control tracked down and destroyed the animals, then captured William and locked him away ... for the very same reason that Viktor never conspired against Marcus: fear. He was warned that should Marcus ever be killed, all those in his bloodline would follow him to the grave. ... A clever deception, but one Viktor was hardly willing to put to the test. And so Marcus was protected at all costs.
—Andreas Tanis

Andreas Tanis
Andreas Tanis

By turning Viktor, Marcus not only gained a powerful warlord as an ally, but also Viktor’s army. This gave the vampires the force they needed to fight back the first generation of werewolves. However, since Viktor was personally more powerful than Marcus, Viktor ended up taking control, making Marcus subordinate to him. Viktor eventually claimed to be the oldest vampire, exiled the historian, and forbade anyone from looking into the past to prevent them from discovering the truth.

Another consideration is that once Viktor’s army was turned, the coven gained hundreds or thousands of vampires whose primary loyalty was with Viktor. Even if Marcus had decided to kill Viktor, he would have to contend with an army of angry vampires who would be unlikely to accept Marcus’s rule, if anyone found out that Marcus had killed him.

Production notes

This is explained further in the Underworld: Evolution Production Notes (emphasis mine):

Viktor ... was merely a usurper. “I was the first,” declares Tony Curran of Marcus, “but it doesn’t mean I was the most powerful. I was an arrogant young vampire; Viktor was a powerful man and when he became a vampire, being older and more experienced, he took over the leadership.” Viktor then used his power to wage war on the werewolves who at the time were far more destructive and uncontrollable than their later progeny.

This answer contains numerous spoilers for Underworld: Evolution.

Marcus was the first and oldest vampire, the ancestor of all other vampires. He was therefore older as a vampire than Viktor. According to the Underworld Wiki article on Viktor, the production notes and novelizations of the films differ on who was born earlier as a mortal.

Marcus told Viktor that if he (Marcus) or William (the first werewolf) died, then all of their descendents would die with them. We know that this isn’t true, because

Marcus and William both died near the end of Underworld: Evolution and their descendants lived on.

Explanation from Andreas Tanis

Andreas Tanis, the exiled historian for the vampires, explains a few things in Underworld: Evolution (52 minutes into the film) about why Marcus turned Viktor, and the origin of the myth that Marcus and William had to remain alive (emphasis mine):

Toward the end of his ruthless life, when the next breath meant more to Viktor than silver or gold, Marcus came with an offer, a reprieve from sickness and death. Immortality. And in return, Viktor was to use his army turned Immortal to help him ... to defeat the very first werewolves. A dangerous and very infectious breed ... raging monsters, never able to take human form again. ...

So once Viktor’s army was turned, the legions of vampires under his control tracked down and destroyed the animals, then captured William and locked him away ... for the very same reason that Viktor never conspired against Marcus: fear. He was warned that should Marcus ever be killed, all those in his bloodline would follow him to the grave. ... A clever deception, but one Viktor was hardly willing to put to the test. And so Marcus was protected at all costs.
—Andreas Tanis

Andreas Tanis
Andreas Tanis

By turning Viktor, Marcus not only gained a powerful warlord as an ally, but also Viktor’s army. This gave the vampires the force they needed to fight back the first generation of werewolves. However, since Viktor was personally more powerful than Marcus, Viktor ended up taking control, making Marcus subordinate to him. Viktor eventually claimed to be the oldest vampire, exiled the historian, and forbade anyone from looking into the past to prevent them from discovering the truth.

Production notes

This is explained further in the Underworld: Evolution Production Notes (emphasis mine):

Viktor ... was merely a usurper. “I was the first,” declares Tony Curran of Marcus, “but it doesn’t mean I was the most powerful. I was an arrogant young vampire; Viktor was a powerful man and when he became a vampire, being older and more experienced, he took over the leadership.” Viktor then used his power to wage war on the werewolves who at the time were far more destructive and uncontrollable than their later progeny.

This answer contains numerous spoilers for Underworld: Evolution.

Marcus was the first and oldest vampire, the ancestor of all other vampires. He was therefore older as a vampire than Viktor. According to the Underworld Wiki article on Viktor, the production notes and novelizations of the films differ on who was born earlier as a mortal.

Marcus told Viktor that if he (Marcus) or William (the first werewolf) died, then all of their descendents would die with them. We know that this isn’t true, because

Marcus and William both died near the end of Underworld: Evolution and their descendants lived on.

Explanation from Andreas Tanis

Andreas Tanis, the exiled historian for the vampires, explains a few things in Underworld: Evolution (52 minutes into the film) about why Marcus turned Viktor, and the origin of the myth that Marcus and William had to remain alive (emphasis mine):

Toward the end of his ruthless life, when the next breath meant more to Viktor than silver or gold, Marcus came with an offer, a reprieve from sickness and death. Immortality. And in return, Viktor was to use his army turned Immortal to help him ... to defeat the very first werewolves. A dangerous and very infectious breed ... raging monsters, never able to take human form again. ...

So once Viktor’s army was turned, the legions of vampires under his control tracked down and destroyed the animals, then captured William and locked him away ... for the very same reason that Viktor never conspired against Marcus: fear. He was warned that should Marcus ever be killed, all those in his bloodline would follow him to the grave. ... A clever deception, but one Viktor was hardly willing to put to the test. And so Marcus was protected at all costs.
—Andreas Tanis

Andreas Tanis
Andreas Tanis

By turning Viktor, Marcus not only gained a powerful warlord as an ally, but also Viktor’s army. This gave the vampires the force they needed to fight back the first generation of werewolves. However, since Viktor was personally more powerful than Marcus, Viktor ended up taking control, making Marcus subordinate to him. Viktor eventually claimed to be the oldest vampire, exiled the historian, and forbade anyone from looking into the past to prevent them from discovering the truth.

Another consideration is that once Viktor’s army was turned, the coven gained hundreds or thousands of vampires whose primary loyalty was with Viktor. Even if Marcus had decided to kill Viktor, he would have to contend with an army of angry vampires who would be unlikely to accept Marcus’s rule, if anyone found out that Marcus had killed him.

Production notes

This is explained further in the Underworld: Evolution Production Notes (emphasis mine):

Viktor ... was merely a usurper. “I was the first,” declares Tony Curran of Marcus, “but it doesn’t mean I was the most powerful. I was an arrogant young vampire; Viktor was a powerful man and when he became a vampire, being older and more experienced, he took over the leadership.” Viktor then used his power to wage war on the werewolves who at the time were far more destructive and uncontrollable than their later progeny.

2 added 164 characters in body
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This answer contains numerous spoilers for Underworld: Evolution.

Marcus was the first and oldest vampire, the ancestor of all other vampires. He was therefore older as a vampire than Viktor. According to the Underworld Wiki article on Viktor, the production notes and novelizations of the films differ on who was born earlier as a mortal.

Marcus told Viktor that if he (Marcus) or William (the first werewolf) died, then all of their descendents would die with them. We know that this isn’t true, because

Marcus and William both died near the end of Underworld: Evolution and their descendants lived on.

Explanation from Andreas Tanis

Andreas Tanis, the exiled historian for the vampires, explains a few things in Underworld: Evolution (52 minutes into the film) about why Marcus turned Viktor, and the origin of the myth that Marcus and William had to remain alive (emphasis mine):

Toward the end of his ruthless life, when the next breath meant more to Viktor than silver or gold, Marcus came with an offer, a reprieve from sickness and death. Immortality. And in return, Viktor was to use his army turned Immortal to help him ... to defeat the very first werewolves. A dangerous and very infectious breed ... raging monsters, never able to take human form again. ...

So once Viktor’s army was turned, the legions of vampires under his control tracked down and destroyed the animals, then captured William and locked him away ... for the very same reason that Viktor never conspired against Marcus: fear. He was warned that should Marcus ever be killed, all those in his bloodline would follow him to the grave. ... A clever deception, but one Viktor was hardly willing to put to the test. And so Marcus was protected at all costs.
—Andreas Tanis

Andreas Tanis
Andreas Tanis

By turning Viktor, Marcus not only gained a powerful warlord as an ally, but also Viktor’s army. This gave the vampires the force they needed to fight back the first generation of werewolves. However, since Viktor was personally more powerful than Marcus, Viktor ended up taking control, making Marcus subordinate to him. Viktor eventually claimed to be the oldest vampire, exiled the historian, and forbade anyone from looking into the past to prevent them from discovering the truth.

Production notes

This is explained further in the Underworld: Evolution Production Notes (emphasis mine):

Viktor ... was merely a usurper. “I was the first,” declares Tony Curran of Marcus, “but it doesn’t mean I was the most powerful. I was an arrogant young vampire; Viktor was a powerful man and when he became a vampire, being older and more experienced, he took over the leadership.” Viktor then used his power to wage war on the werewolves who at the time were far more destructive and uncontrollable than their later progeny.

This answer contains numerous spoilers for Underworld: Evolution.

Marcus was the first and oldest vampire, the ancestor of all other vampires. He was therefore older as a vampire than Viktor. According to the Underworld Wiki article on Viktor, the production notes and novelizations of the films differ on who was born earlier as a mortal.

Marcus told Viktor that if he (Marcus) or William (the first werewolf) died, then all of their descendents would die with them. We know that this isn’t true, because

Marcus and William both died near the end of Underworld: Evolution and their descendants lived on.

Explanation from Andreas Tanis

Andreas Tanis, the exiled historian for the vampires, explains a few things in Underworld: Evolution (52 minutes into the film) about why Marcus turned Viktor, and the origin of the myth that Marcus and William had to remain alive (emphasis mine):

Toward the end of his ruthless life, when the next breath meant more to Viktor than silver or gold, Marcus came with an offer, a reprieve from sickness and death. Immortality. And in return, Viktor was to use his army turned Immortal to help him ... to defeat the very first werewolves. A dangerous and very infectious breed ... raging monsters, never able to take human form again. ...

So once Viktor’s army was turned, the legions of vampires under his control tracked down and destroyed the animals, then captured William and locked him away ... for the very same reason that Viktor never conspired against Marcus: fear. He was warned that should Marcus ever be killed, all those in his bloodline would follow him to the grave. ... A clever deception, but one Viktor was hardly willing to put to the test. And so Marcus was protected at all costs.
—Andreas Tanis

Andreas Tanis
Andreas Tanis

By turning Viktor, Marcus not only gained a powerful warlord as an ally, but also Viktor’s army. This gave the vampires the force they needed to fight back the first generation of werewolves. However, since Viktor was personally more powerful than Marcus, Viktor ended up taking control, making Marcus subordinate to him.

Production notes

This is explained further in the Underworld: Evolution Production Notes (emphasis mine):

Viktor ... was merely a usurper. “I was the first,” declares Tony Curran of Marcus, “but it doesn’t mean I was the most powerful. I was an arrogant young vampire; Viktor was a powerful man and when he became a vampire, being older and more experienced, he took over the leadership.” Viktor then used his power to wage war on the werewolves who at the time were far more destructive and uncontrollable than their later progeny.

This answer contains numerous spoilers for Underworld: Evolution.

Marcus was the first and oldest vampire, the ancestor of all other vampires. He was therefore older as a vampire than Viktor. According to the Underworld Wiki article on Viktor, the production notes and novelizations of the films differ on who was born earlier as a mortal.

Marcus told Viktor that if he (Marcus) or William (the first werewolf) died, then all of their descendents would die with them. We know that this isn’t true, because

Marcus and William both died near the end of Underworld: Evolution and their descendants lived on.

Explanation from Andreas Tanis

Andreas Tanis, the exiled historian for the vampires, explains a few things in Underworld: Evolution (52 minutes into the film) about why Marcus turned Viktor, and the origin of the myth that Marcus and William had to remain alive (emphasis mine):

Toward the end of his ruthless life, when the next breath meant more to Viktor than silver or gold, Marcus came with an offer, a reprieve from sickness and death. Immortality. And in return, Viktor was to use his army turned Immortal to help him ... to defeat the very first werewolves. A dangerous and very infectious breed ... raging monsters, never able to take human form again. ...

So once Viktor’s army was turned, the legions of vampires under his control tracked down and destroyed the animals, then captured William and locked him away ... for the very same reason that Viktor never conspired against Marcus: fear. He was warned that should Marcus ever be killed, all those in his bloodline would follow him to the grave. ... A clever deception, but one Viktor was hardly willing to put to the test. And so Marcus was protected at all costs.
—Andreas Tanis

Andreas Tanis
Andreas Tanis

By turning Viktor, Marcus not only gained a powerful warlord as an ally, but also Viktor’s army. This gave the vampires the force they needed to fight back the first generation of werewolves. However, since Viktor was personally more powerful than Marcus, Viktor ended up taking control, making Marcus subordinate to him. Viktor eventually claimed to be the oldest vampire, exiled the historian, and forbade anyone from looking into the past to prevent them from discovering the truth.

Production notes

This is explained further in the Underworld: Evolution Production Notes (emphasis mine):

Viktor ... was merely a usurper. “I was the first,” declares Tony Curran of Marcus, “but it doesn’t mean I was the most powerful. I was an arrogant young vampire; Viktor was a powerful man and when he became a vampire, being older and more experienced, he took over the leadership.” Viktor then used his power to wage war on the werewolves who at the time were far more destructive and uncontrollable than their later progeny.

1
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