First 'Dark Shadows' Trailer: Goth Grooviness and Vampire Comedy

Thursday, 15 March 2012 17:34 Written by  Jordan DeSaulnier
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First 'Dark Shadows' Trailer: Goth Grooviness and Vampire Comedy

As promised earlier this week, the first theatrical trailer for Dark Shadows premiered somewhat inexplicably today on The Ellen DeGeneres Show, showing up online just a few hours later.  Aside from a tiny three second snippet, this our first real look at director Tim Burton's cinematic update of the cult soap opera created by Dan Curtis in 1966.  Like you'd expect, it includes plenty of Johnny Depp, with the big ensemble cast almost exclusively reacting to his vampiric Barnabas Collins.

With Burton and Depp together again, the marketing machine was expected to begin sooner than this, with less than two months until the release.  Months of official stills showed off the costuming and production design, but this is our first taste of the film's actual tone, which is surprisingly comedic.  Not that a comedic bent on the original series is entirely surprising, but check out just how much fish out of water shenanigans are contained in these two and a half minutes.  Dark Shadows is more a comedy than you might've thought.

View it here or in high definition at Apple.

It looks like Burton is having blast with the vampire's ancestral home at Collingwood Manor.  The overall feeling combines Burton's pop-goth and pop-pop sensibilities; Barnabas and the Manor itself are Sleepy Hollow or Batman, while the 1970s setting is more Alice in Wonderland or Charlie in the Chocolate Factory.

Speaking of having a blast, Depp seems to be very much enjoying himself here, as does Eva Green as Angelique Bouchard, the witch and apparent full-on villain who cursed Barnabas to an eternity of vampirism.  We see less of the supporting cast, but it's safe bet that Helena Bonham Carter, Michelle Pfeiffer, Chloe Moretz, Jonny Lee Miller, Bella Heathcote, Jackie Earle Haley, Gulliver McGrath, and Christopher Lee.

Seth Grahame-Smith wrote the screenplay, and this film represents only one of two would-be blockbusters bearing his stamp of approval this summer.  The other is the Burton-produced, Timur Bekmambetov-directed Abraham Lincoln: Vampire Hunter, based on Grahame-Smith's mashup novel.  The author himself co-wrote the script with Simon Kinberg.

Dark Shadows arrives in theaters on May 11th.

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