In The Balcony Movie Review: Tim Burton’s Dark Shadows

By Jueseppi B.










Dark Shadows is an upcoming fantasy comedy film based on the 1966–1971 gothic soap opera of thesame name. The film is directed by Tim Burton and stars Johnny Depp as Barnabas Collins, a 200-year-old vampire, and Michelle Pfeiffer as his cousin Elizabeth Collins Stoddard, a reclusive matriarch of the Collins family. It is scheduled to be released on May 11, 2012 in both conventional and IMAX theaters.








In 1752, the Collins family sails from Liverpool, England to North America. The son, Barnabas, grows up to be a wealthy playboy in Collinsport, Maine and is the master of Collinwood Manor. He breaks the heart of a witch, Angelique Bouchard, who turns him into a vampire and buries him alive. In 1972, Barnabas is accidentally freed from his coffin and returns to find his once-magnificent mansion in ruin. The manor is currently occupied by Barnabas’ dysfunctional descendants, all of whom are hiding dark and horrifying secrets.






Veteran actor Christopher Lee, who played Count Dracula in Hammer’s 1958 adaption, was originally announced by Empire Magazine as playing Bill Malloy, “a sort of king of the fishermen who spends a lot of time in the local pub, The Blue Whale.” However, Seth Grahame-Smith later announced via his Twitter that Lee is not portraying Bill Malloy. His role is currently undisclosed.



At the San Diego Comic-Con 2011, it was also confirmed that four actors from the original series will appear in the film. In June 2011, Jonathan FridLara ParkerDavid Selby and Kathryn Leigh Scott all spent three days at Pinewood Studios to film cameo appearances. They will all be appearing as party guests during a ball held at Collinwood Manor. Frid passed away on April 13, 2012, making this his final film appearance.






Dark Shadows is directed by Tim Burton based on a screenplay by Seth Grahame-Smith. In July 2007, Warner Bros. acquired film rights for the gothic soap opera Dark Shadows from the estate of its creator Dan Curtis. Actor Johnny Depp stars in the film. The project’s development was delayed by the 2007–2008 Writers Guild of America strike. After the strike was resolved, Tim Burton was attached to direct the film. By 2009, screenwriterJohn August was writing a screenplay for Dark Shadows. In 2010, author and screenwriter Seth Grahame-Smith replaced August in writing the screenplay. August, did, however, receive story credit with Smith for his contribution to the film. Filming began in May 2011. It is being filmed entirely in England, at both Pinewood Studios and on location. It is scheduled for release in May 2012.



Additional crew members and Burton regulars are production designer Rick Heinrichs, costume designer Colleen Atwood, editor Chris Lebenzon and composer Danny Elfman. French cinematographer Bruno Delbonnel — known for his work in AmélieA Very Long Engagement and Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince — has been hired for the project.




Directed by Tim Burton
Produced by Graham King
Christi Dembrowski
Johnny Depp
David Kennedy
Richard D. Zanuck
Screenplay by Seth Grahame-Smith
Story by John August
Seth Grahame-Smith
Based on Dark Shadows by
Dan Curtis
Starring Johnny Depp
Michelle Pfeiffer
Helena Bonham Carter
Eva Green
Jackie Earle Haley
Jonny Lee Miller
Chloë Grace Moretz
Bella Heathcote
Music by Danny Elfman
Cinematography Bruno Delbonnel
Editing by Chris Lebenzon
Studio Village Roadshow Pictures
GK Films
Infinitum Nihil
The Zanuck Company
Distributed by Warner Bros.
Release date(s) May 11, 2012
Country United States
Language English
Budget $105 Million




12 replies »

    • I think I will see it, I am old enough to have seen a few episodes of the TV series of the 70’s. I don’t usually like Vampire things, but this appears to be a comedy, so I might see it.


  1. I sooo can not wait to see this movie. LOL loving the soundtrack alread. Let’s see, Dark Shadows, Johnny Depp, Barry White, Curtis Mayfield, and the Carpenters. Helluva combo!

    Thanks for the review, Jueseppi. You’ve rock another InThe Balcony.


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