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Exclusive New Dark Shadows Pics
Burton & Depp's latest Gothic effort

27 September 2011  |  Written by Helen O'Hara  |  Source: Exclusive

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It's Johnny Depp and Tim Burton's eighth collaboration, a big-budget film based on a TV show that no-one remembers (at least outside the US) and which features a motley crew of vampires, witches and supernatural weirdos. Dark Shadows, in other words, is a perfect subject for both star and director, and from these photos it looks like we can expect more of their particular brand of off-kilter charm.

Empire was on set, and learned a little about the 1972-set film version. The story focuses on Barnabas Collins (Depp), who was transformed into a vampire by a jilted lover (Eva Green's witch Angelique) way back in the 1700s and buried. He's just been dug up, and attempts to reintegrate with his descendants, led by Michelle Pfeiffer's Elizabeth and Jonny Lee Miller's Roger - despite the fact that Angelique is still around and still not in a forgiving mood.

Said screenwriter Seth Grahame-Smith, "Tim and Johnny took a long time explaining exactly why it had to be 1972. 1969 was too early and 1973 was too late. 1972 is right at the time when the hippie movement and all its peace and love is dying out and being replaced by this  me-me-me generation in the '70s who are all about showing their wealth and having everything."

There's also good news for those who didn't love Alice In Wonderland's 3D - this will be firmly 2D. Says producer Richard Zanuck, "We discussed this quite a bit. We didn't want to be categorised as another 3D extravaganza, because this isn't. We have action sequences, but mostly it's interaction between characters, and that's where the humour and the story come from."

Dark Shadows is out on May 11, 2012, and you can read more about it in the new issue of Empire, out in stores this Thursday.

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Your Comments

RE: Soooo Saddd
If by huge letdown you mean the white makeup on Johnny Depp, I agree. I don't want Barnabas to become a monster or a creature of some sort. First and foremost he was a human being who was kind and caring, but unfortunately had to survive as a vampire. To make him up to look like some kind of hideous vampire first and then maybe sprinkle a little human in him would totally ruin the movie. Please don't disappoint both Dark Shadows and Johnny Depp fans. More

Posted by acumom at 19:55 on 27 October 2011 | Report This Post

Loved Dark Shadows
I was 12 years old when I started watching Dark Shadows. I was hooked!! Barnabas, Victoria Winters, Sarah his sister, Angelique, Willie, etc. etc. I loved them all. Well, it was kind of hard to love Angelique!! But she had beautiful eyes. I can't wait to see JD as Barnabas Collins. He is my favorite actor. I like the look of him as Barnabas in that big family shot of all the actors. But the one with the white makeup is a bit much. I hope he at least semi-stays true to the original story More

Posted by acumom at 19:45 on 27 October 2011 | Report This Post

I dont see any issues...
i think it looks awesome. The only Burton and Depp collaboration that didnt work so well was alice in wonderland but i think it wasnt there fault it was just other things that let the film down. More

Posted by trainedasninja at 10:43 on 03 October 2011 | Report This Post

good to see Burton and Depp trying something different.......Scissorhands, was in my opinion, the only truly impressive Johnny Burton film. More

Posted by JackAttwood at 03:04 on 01 October 2011 | Report This Post

Other worldy
I'd never heard of Dark Shadows...but I like the look of this...I think Tim Burton has yet to do his best work, or was that Batman? Either way, I can't wait to see a trailer. More

Posted by ThisIsntEvenMyDesk at 19:08 on 30 September 2011 | Report This Post

Soooo Saddd
I hope I am wrong, but this looks like it's going in the wrong direction. I loved Dark Shadows and was so excited about Depp and Burton doing this remake. But I think it's going to be a huge letdown by the pics I have viewed. Johnny, You said "it was not going to change that much", what's happening?? More

Posted by diverte at 17:10 on 30 September 2011 | Report This Post

more of the same, then
I'm amazed by the people describing this as something different. Kooky retro gothic with Johnny Depp -like this - aptly sums up most of Burton's films. More

Posted by launcelot at 21:11 on 29 September 2011 | Report This Post

Resurrection welcomed but with misgivings
I've read that the series reruns have never been out of syndication around the world and that it's immensely popular everywhere EXCEPT the U.S, contrary to what this writer implies . I have to admit I am a huge fan of the original series, and I have misgivings about this latest resurrection. Depp & Burton are great in films heavy on action and special effects, never the greatest aspects of the original DS. Even the original creators of DS were never able to put their finger on its best q More

Posted by John83 at 11:06 on 29 September 2011 | Report This Post

Tim Burton - the one and only
Tim Burton is my favorite director ever. I can't wait for this movie to come out! Although it looks a lot different from his usuall stuff.... But, I have faith in him. More

Posted by Coro1234 at 18:22 on 28 September 2011 | Report This Post

It could work...
One of the main fascinations for Barnabas Collins arises from his being a true human underneath the monster. After several remakes of Dark Shadows & 2 full length movies it would be unnecessary to make another clone of the series. It will be interesting to get Burton's version. Check out this song about Barnabas: More

Posted by Guardianz at 16:59 on 27 September 2011 | Report This Post

Good to see Tim Burton doing somethign different. I am glad he is making a film for grown ups for a change. Instead of the same old thing. It is not as if he is doing a gothic fantasy wiith no relation to the real world once more. Oh wait..Hang on a second. More

Posted by JimmyThe Saint at 12:42 on 27 September 2011 | Report This Post

I love Johnny, I love Burton...
...I'll forgive them almost anything they've done together (yes, that means you Charlie & the Chocolate Factory!) but I've got a bad feeling we're heading into Mars Attacks!/ POTC: At World's End territory here. A sad and bad combination. Hope I'm wrong. More

Posted by Porter at 11:54 on 27 September 2011 | Report This Post

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