Back in the 1980s, Blog of Dark Shadows editor Ed Gross had an opportunity to sit down with the late Grayson Hall to discuss Dark Shadows. Unfortunately my younger self did not ask all the questions that my older self would have liked, and if I had an opportunity to use a Delorean to travel back in time I would in order to provide a list of questions (that’s right, there are no other historical wrongs that I would set right, just that one – definitely need to get out more). Still, what follows is an excerpt from that interview.
BLOG OF DS: The first question that comes to mind is how you came to be involved with Dark Shadows in the first place.
GRAYSON HALL: It was the summer. I remember Sam and Matthew, our son, went to Ohio to see Sam’s family. Something kept me here [in New York], I don’t know what, but I came in the house and peeled my clothes off. I was lying in the air-conditioned splendor of the bedroom and my agent called me. He said, “Would you like to do a soap? It’s a thirteen week contract. You’ll be a doctor, the vampire will find you out and you’ll be killed and that’s the end of that.” I said, “Great, a soap would be great.” What happened is that I played this doctor filled with all these technical things that I had to talk about, and to make it not so dry I made a decision all by myself that I would be in love with Barnabas.
BLOG OF DS: So that wasn’t in the original conception of the character?
GRAYSON HALL: It wasn’t written. I just kind of looked at him longingly. It just made it more interesting for me as a subtext. I don’t know if you know anything about subtext. It’s like you’re talking to me and there’s a whole thought process going through your mind about your next question. It’s like when you’re playing a character. So I decided that instead of being a serious dedicated doctor, I would be a serious dedicated doctor in love with a patient; a patient who happened to be a vampire.”