He accompanied his father and brother to the Ottoman Empire, where they planned to negotiate for peace. They were ambushed en route by agents of Sultan Murad II, who held the sons captive, forcing Vlad the Elder to favor Turkey. This eventually led John Hunyadi and Vlad's other advisers to revolt against him, killing him and his son Mircea. After five years of torture, Radu had died in captivity.
- Radu Dracula is likely based on the real life person Radu III, younger brother to Count Dracula. In real life, he was never referred to as "Radu Dracula."
- The historical Radu had three terms as Voivode of Wallachia (reigned 1462-1473, 1473-1474, 1474). He was a political rival to his brother Vlad Tepes ("Dracula", son of the Dragon) as they both had legitimate claims to the Wallachian throne. Radu helped depose his brother Vlad in 1462, but they continued warring against each other for years.
- The historical Radu is known by the nicknames "Radu the Handsome" and "Radu the Beautiful", due to a reputation for irresistible beauty in his teenage years. He reportedly spend some time as a male concubine for Sultan Mehmed II, and managed to get Mehmed's support while seeking military appointments in the Ottoman Empire and claiming the throne of Wallachia.
- Radu disappears from the historical record c. 1475, after his final deposition. He is thought likely to have been murdered or executed by his political rival (and future son-in-law) Stephen III of Moldavia.
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