New release: Dark Shadows documentary. One can't deny the importance of the horror genre in 1960s pop culture, both in terms of the enduring popularity of the Universal Monsters and the continued wave of monster magazines, model kits, and shows like The Munsters and The Addams Family, and the wave of gothic horror via Corman, Price, Bava, and a super-popular daytime soap called Dark Shadows. Dark Shadows and creator Dan Curtis are the subject of a new documentary due for release this spring. From the press release: "MPI Media Group today announced it has completed production on the highly anticipated Master of Dark Shadows, a comprehensive celebration of the legendary Gothic daytime series Dark Shadows and its visionary creator, Dan Curtis. The feature documentary, which was shot in New York, LA and London, includes interviews with key actors and filmmakers involved in the undyingly popular story of vampire Barnabas Collins and all the eerie goings-on at the gloomy Maine mansion Collinwood. The documentary was directed by David Gregory (Lost Soul, Godfathers of Mondo) and is set to be released this spring." More below.
"Narrated by Ian McShane (Deadwood), Master of Dark Shadows offers insights from Curtis himself in addition to Oscar-winning writer-producer Alan Ball (True Blood), screenwriter William F. Nolan (Trilogy of Terror), author Herman Wouk (The Winds Of War), veteran actors Whoopi Goldberg (Ghost), Barbara Steele (Black Sunday) and Ben Cross (Chariots of Fire), Dark Shadows stars Jonathan Frid, David Selby, Kathryn Leigh Scott, Lara Parker, John Karlen, Nancy Barrett, Jerry Lacy, Roger Davis, Marie Wallace, Chris Pennock and James Storm, plus other colleagues and family members.
"In 1966, a phenomenon was launched when Dark Shadows debuted on ABC-TV as a daily Gothic suspense series. Airing in the late afternoon, the show attracted a massive youth audience as it shifted to the supernatural with the introduction of vulnerable vampire Barnabas Collins. Witches, ghosts and scary story lines turned Dark Shadows into a TV classic that led to motion pictures, remakes, reunions and legions of devoted fans who have kept the legend alive for five decades.
"The feature-length documentary Master of Dark Shadows reveals the fascinating history, far-reaching impact and lasting appeal of Dark Shadows with a compelling blend of rare footage and behind-the-scenes stories while also exploring the dramatic talents of creator-producer-director Dan Curtis. Known as the "King of TV Horror," the Emmy-winning filmmaker followed Dark Shadows with other iconic genre favorites including The Night Stalker, Trilogy of Terror and Burnt Offerings before earning accolades for the epic miniseries The Winds of War and War and Remembrance."
More info at Amazon and the Collinsport Historical Society. Dark Shadows fans, stay tuned for another exciting DS announcement! I can't say anything yet, but there's another very cool project on the horizon. In other news, I have a new book out (over 700 pages!) about one of America's legendary cartoonists. Check it out! Enjoy!
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