I've read that Johnny Depp wants to star as Barnabas Collins in a Dark Shadows movie. That's cool, but I hope it's done smartly with a new story. It would be awful for it do redo the same old story that was 1) done in the original TV show; 2) remade in Night of Dark Shadows movie; and remade again in 3) the 1990s TV show. Let's not see yet another version of the origin of Barnabas. Jeez that's certainly been done to death.
So, here's my thoughts on how to do it smartly that engages both new fans and old fans. The film should start a new storyline. The storyline should pretend that the original TV series never ended, but that there's a history gap of stories that are untold.
Barnabas Collins, having been cured of the vampire curse decades ago by Julia Hoffman, is an old dying man. Rodger Collins and Liz are long dead and buried, although their ghosts may still linger. David Collins is the reigning patriarch, married and with children.
David's widowed cousin Carolyn also lives at Collinwood and has become an expert in matters occult. Carolyn has become the occult protector of Collinwood and has fended off the dark forces that usually threaten Collinwood for many years. Her protections fail when her youngest son, Quentin celebrates his 21st birthday and inherits his fathers werewolf curse.
Evil forces, such as the eternally youthful witch Angelique. Angelique has returned to Collinsport to offer the dying Barnabas a bargain. His youth for his love. He accepts, and is given his youth as well as being transformed into a vampire again.
OK - that's my idea for the first 20 mins or so. With much high drama and shocking plot twists to follow.