Robert Sanchez of evidently got a little more time with Peter Segal during this weekend’s Get Smart junket than I did; it’s either that, or he opened with Shazam questions. Can’t imagine there’s enough time to talk both movies in the space of five minutes. Not that I’m complaining.

But in querying after Shazam (aka Billy Batson and the Legend of Shazam), Sanchez unexpectedly scored a scoop regarding the Johnny Depp-produced Dark Shadows movie: it’s being written by John August and directed by Tim Burton. And Segal is in a position to know such things because August is currently finishing the screenplay for Shazam, which is still tentatively scheduled for a 2009 release (though that’s phenomenally subject to change).

The big question, of course, is whether Depp will deign to topline the adaptation of the 1960s vampire soap opera. For fans of the series, Depp would be dream casting as charismsatic bloodsucker Barnabus Collins – especially under the direction of Burton. But the star hasn’t 100% committed to anything post-Public Enemies (I don’t know how likely an option Mira Nair’s Shantaram is at this point; seems kinda risky to turn her loose on such a big project after she blew it big time with Vanity Fair). I’m way too young to have much of a connection to Dark Shadows, but I’m a big enough fan of Depp’s to recognize that he’d probably be a high-camp hoot as Barnabas. (A high-camp hoot…?)

What’s more, I can’t imagine Burton agreeing to direct without Depp starring, so go ahead and get the boy fitted for some fangs.