As a big lover of retro TV, Dark Shadows is a huge favorite of mine, as is Kolchak the Night Stalker, two great horror shows from the sixties and seventies that were created by the late producer Dan Curtis.
A daily gothic horror soap opera is actually still a pretty radical idea, even in today’s day and age, which is why some are undoubtedly wondering what today’s audiences will think of Tim Burton’s big screen version of Dark Shadows, which stars Johnny Depp as head vampire Barnabas Collins, and is slated to hit theaters on May 11, 2012.
Other actors joining the gothic vampire fun include Michelle Pfeiffer, Jackie Earle Haley, Christopher Lee, original Barnabas Collins Jonathan Frid, and Alice Cooper.
Burton paramour Helena Bonham Carter told MTV that while she loves Dark Shadows, and it’s “very original” and “uncategorizable,” she also believes “it’s going to be impossible to sell, frankly, because it’s just so… It’s a soap opera but it’s very, very subtle. It’s a ghost story but then it’s an unhappy vampire story. It’s a mixture of so many different things and a real ensemble piece.”
Carter also mentioned that Burton is indeed an old school fan of the show, adding, “This was a thing that he raced home to see when he was about age 10. So it was returning to his childhood roots of what he loved watching.”
Also speaking to MTV, Pfeiffer called Dark Shadows “a dream job” with “such a fun cast… We had so much fun. I just love working with Tim [Burton], I love watching him direct. [There’s] nobody like him.”
In spite of what Carter said, Pfeiffer hopes there will be sequels. As far as Dark Shadows being too out there to make a potential franchise, Pfeiffer said, “That’s what we love about Tim’s movies, they’re not run-of-the-mill and they don’t easily fit into one kind of genre.”