The pairing of eccentric director Tim Burton and handsomely adaptable Johnny Depp is one that we’ve become increasingly aware of in recent years.
Imagined by Burton and acted into life by Depp, roles such as Edward Scissorhands and Sweeny Todd showcase the dark humor and talent that the two share.
“Alice in Wonderland” (2010) and “Charlie and the Chocolate Factory” (2005) entertained audiences with a funny and offbeat aesthetic that continues into the duo’s newest, “Dark Shadows.”
Burton’s “Dark Shadows” is a tongue-in-cheek homage to the campy 1970’s television series of the same name, which among its many story lines depicted a vampire in a never-ending search for his lost love, Josette (played by Bella Heathcote in Burton’s version).
Depp plays bourgeoisie vampire Barnabas Collins, cursed into immortality in 1750 by his rejected lover, the witch Angelique Bouchard (Eva Green), who then buries him alive.
He wakes up in 1972 to learn his castle manor’s glory has faded, along with the lives of the Collins descendants (Michelle Pfeiffer, Johnny Lee Miller and Chloe Grace Moretz). Barnabas is determined to restore the family name and fortune from the witch.
Depp described his vision for the role in an interview with Vanity Fair. “I wanted Barnabas to come across as … this very elegant upper echelon, well-schooled gentleman who’s cursed in the 18th century and brought back to probably the most surreal era of our time – the 1970s – and how he would react to things,” he said.
“Not just with technology and automobiles and such, but actual items of enjoyment for people, like pet rocks, fake flowers, plastic fruit, troll dolls, lava lamps and the macram?