Last week, some set photos of Johnny Depp as the vampire Barnabas Collins in the upcoming Tim Burton film Dark Shadows leaked online. Taken out of context as they probably were, they were met with some skepticism and not a few jokes about Depp’s extraordinary pale look. Perhaps in response to that, Warner Brothers has released the first official cast photo from the production to Entertainment Weekly. We should note that EW is owned by Time Warner so it’s not hard to imagine how they got the scoop.
Anyway, click on the picture below for a bigger look at from left to right Helena Bonham Carter as Dr. Julia Hoffman, Chloe Grace Moretz as Carolyn Stoddard, Eva Green as Angelique Bouchard, Gulliver McGrath as David Collins, Bella Heathcote as Vitoria Winters, Johnny Depp as Barnabas, Ray Shirley as Mrs. Johnson, Jackie Earle Haley as Willie Loomis, Jonny Lee Miller as Roger Collins and Michelle Pfeiffer as Elizabeth Collins Stoddard.
If you’re wondering about the costuming, you should know that the film is set in 1973, ironically, the same year that the original Dark Shadows daytime soap opera on which the movie is based ended.
The studio synopsis is as follows (some spoilers) –
In the year 1752, Joshua and Naomi Collins, with young son Barnabas, set sail from Liverpool, England to start a new life in America. But even an ocean was not enough to escape the mysterious curse that has plagued their family. Two decades pass and Barnabas (Johnny Depp) has the world at his feet—or at least the town of Collinsport, Maine. The master of Collinwood Manor, Barnabas is rich, powerful and an inveterate playboy…until he makes the grave mistake of breaking the heart of Angelique Brouchard (Eva Green). A witch, in every sense of the word, Angelique dooms him to a fate worse than death: turning him into a vampire, and then burying him alive.
Two centuries later, Barnabas is inadvertently freed from his tomb and emerges into the very changed world of 1972. He returns to Collinwood Manor to find that his once-grand estate has fallen into ruin. The dysfunctional remnants of the Collins family have fared little better, each harboring their own dark secrets. Matriarch Elizabeth Collins Stoddard (Michelle Pfeiffer) has called upon live-in psychiatrist, Dr. Julia Hoffman (Helena Bonham Carter), to help with her family troubles.
Also residing in the manor is Elizabeth’s ne’er-do-well brother, Roger Collins (Jonny Lee Miller); her rebellious teenage daughter Carolyn Stoddard (Chloe Moretz); and Roger’s precocious 10-year-old son, David Collins (Gulliver McGrath). The mystery extends beyond the family, to caretaker Willie Loomis, played by Jackie Earle Haley, and David’s new nanny, Victoria Winters, played by Bella Heathcote.