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Dark Shadows: A Quick Introduction

Currently in development is a big-screen version of the '60s soap opera Dark Shadows with Johnny Depp playing vampire Barnabas Collins. For those unfamiliar with the show, Wikipedia has a great overview.
"Dark Shadows is a gothic soap opera that originally aired weekdays on the ABC television network, from June 27, 1966 to April 2, 1971. The show was created by Dan Curtis, who tells of a dream he had in which a girl takes a long train ride to visit a large mansion. The story "bible," which was written by Art Wallace, does not mention any supernatural elements. It was considered daring (and unprecedented in daytime television) when ghosts were introduced about six months after it began.

"The series became hugely popular when, a year into its run, vampire Barnabas Collins, played by Jonathan Frid, appeared. In addition to vampires, Dark Shadows featured werewolves, ghosts, zombies, man-made monsters, witches, warlocks, time travel (both into the past and into the future), and a parallel universe. A small company of actors each played many roles and, as actors came and went, some characters were played by several actors. Major writers in addition to Art Wallace included Malcolm Marmorstein, who created the character of Barnabas Collins, Sam Hall, Gordon Russell, and Violet Welles.

"Dark Shadows was distinguished by its vividly melodramatic performances, atmospheric interiors, memorable storylines, and an unusually adventurous music score. Now regarded as somewhat of a camp classic, it continues to enjoy intense cult status among its followers. Director Tim Burton and pop icon Madonna have both gone on record as fans of the series. As a child Johnny Depp was so obsessed with Barnabas Collins that he wanted to be him, and is collaborating with Tim Burton on a theatrical film adaptation, in which he will play the character."

For a look at portions of the first episode, check out this Dark Shadows Episode 1 "minisode". Be prepared - the TV style at the beginning is not only different from today, but radically different from what the show would eventually become.



To order "Dark Shadows: In the Beginning" volume one DVD (which covers about the first month of the show) just click below.

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EdGross
4/24/2010

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2 Comments

Great stuff Ed.....more more :)
teabag - 4/24/2010, 4:54 PM
Good article
Kate
gipoter - 5/9/2018, 9:45 AM

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