I didn’t pick up on this story when it first hit the press last year, but it recently came to my attention during a conversation with a friend of mine who, like me, is quite the fan of all things Vincent Price. When I posted the story yesterday of the new Scream Factory Vincent Price Collection, he reminded me that there have been some rumors that Tim Burton and Johnny Depp were in talks with Warner Brothers to do a remake of THE ABOMINABLE DR. PHIBES while they collaborated on the ridiculously awful DARK SHADOWS remake.
Though we probably won’t be seeing it until 2014, Edgar Wright (SHAUN OF THE DEAD) has been tapped to direct a remake/film adaptation of ABC’s classic TV movie and series KOLCHAK: THE NIGHT STALKER for Disney. In talks to potentially play the lead of tenacious reporter Carl Kolchak, originally played to perfection by Darren McGavin, is none other than Johnny Depp (DARK SHADOWS, NIGHTMARE ON ELM STREET, and almost everything Tim Burton has done for the past 15 years or so). Details are few and far between right now as Wright is currently working on WORLD’S END with Simon Pegg and Nick Frost (re-united again, their previous collaborations being SHAUN OF THE DEAD and HOT FUZZ) for a 2013 release, but the project has recently acquired writer D.V. DeVincentis (HIGH FIDELITY, GROSS POINTE BLANK) to work on the screenplay based on characters originally created by Jeff Rice, with the first tele-film written by Richard Matheson and produced by Dan Curtis who went on to create the television series.
Synopsis for the original show:
Chicago newspaper reporter—Carl Kolchak—who investigates mysterious crimes with unlikely causes, particularly ones law enforcement authorities won’t pursue. Often these crimes involve some element of the supernatural or science fiction, such as werewolves, vampires, and zombies. Though he’d always put his life on the line to investigate and stop evil, he was always met with disbelief by his editor and was never allowed to write the entire story for his paper, leaving out the more supernatural details
It’s safe to say I’m a HUGE fan of the original NIGHT STALKER series. Darren Gavin played Kolchak with a dry wit, humor, and intelligence whether arguing with his exasperated editor, or in the face of danger (an obvious model for the Mulder character on THE X-FILES, Chris Carter having said in the past how he was influenced by the series). While I often dread remakes of classics, I have a feeling that with Edgar Wright at the helm and Johnny Depp (in a non-Burton role) playing Kolchak, this may very well be an incredible film. Fingers crossed, boils ‘n ghouls…I’m excited!
Of course, a release date is always subject to change, but the boils ‘n ghouls over at Shock Till You Drop have scored a date for Tim Burton’s cinematic re-vamping (if you will) of the long running television series DARK SHADOWS. From STYD:
Tim Burton’s adaptation of the long-running television series Dark Shadows is rolling into theaters on May 11, 2012.
That places the gothic horror film smack-dab at the outset of the summer movie season.
It opens one week after Marvel’s The Avengers, a week before Battleship and two weeks before Men in Black III.
With Burton at the helm and Johnny Depp starring, it’s possible the film will hold its own during what is expected to be an incredibly crazy summer movie season.
Eva Green, Jackie Earle Haley, Bella Heathcoate, Thomas McDonnell, Helena Bonham Carter and Chloe Moretz co-star.
Sam Sarkar, director of development over at Johnny Depp’s production outfit Infinitum-Nihil, spoke to MTV recently on the state of the Dark Shadows project.
He would not confirm or deny whether or not Tim Burton was attached to direct, but stated that the project is in full swing and they’re working with Warner Brothers. Additionally, it was stated that, when Dan Curtis was still among the living, he gave his blessing to the project.
If the film proves successful, there is potential there for a series of sequels.