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|Running time:||30 min.|
|Production company:||Dan Curtis Productions|
|Executive producers:||Dan Curtis|
|Principal cast:||Alexandra Moltke|
Kathryn Leigh Scott
|First aired:||June 27th, 1966|
|Last aired:||April 2nd, 1971|
Dark Shadows was a television soap opera that aired on ABC from June of 1966 to April of 1971 spanning a total of 1,245 episodes. Created by Dan Curtis, the series proved to be extremely popular owing primarily to its gothic atmosphere and subject matter. The series centered around the Collins family of the fictional city known as Collinsport in Northern Maine. The early episodes were shown from the perspective of a young woman named Victoria Winters, who comes to Collinsport, hoping to find clues to her mysterious past. In the beginning, the series followed the plot conventions of a traditional soap opera, but slowly began to infuse elements of the supernatural into it, such as ghosts and mythological creatures like the Phoenix. In 1967, the series paved the way for its future cult status with the introduction of a 175-year-old vampire named Barnabas Collins. Originally intended as a villain, Barnabas Collins proved to be extremely popular with viewers, and the production crew decided to steer him away from the role of adversary and evolve him into the central figure of the series. In addition to vampires and ghosts, Dark Shadows showcased many other supernatural creatures including werewolves, witches, zombies and demons. Many of the plot threads from the series were inspired by famous literary works including Dracula, Frankenstein, The Turn of the Screw, The Picture of Dorian Gray, The Strange Case of Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde and even elements of H.P. Lovecraft's Cthulhu mythos. The show also made use of certain science fiction elements including time travel and parallel dimensions. Due to budgetary restraints and restricted shooting schedules, most of the shots filmed for the series were done in one take. Aired episodes included a variety of mistakes including actors mis-speaking their lines or visible production crew members and equipment. In 1991, a revival series of Dark Shadows was produced and aired on NBC. This series did not enjoy the longevity of its predecessor and only lasted twelve episodes.