John Karlen.jpg
John Karlen
Birth name: John Adam Karlewicz
Gender: Male
Medium(s): Television
Roles: Actor
Date of birth: May 28th, 1933
Place of birth: Brooklyn, New York City, New York
Date of death: January 22nd, 2020
Place of death: Burbank, California
Notable works: Dark Shadows
House of Dark Shadows
Night of Dark Shadows
1st Horror: Dark Shadows: 206

John Karlen is an American actor born in Brooklyn, New York on May 28th, 1933. In horror circles he is best known for playing the stammering sychophant Willie Loomis from the 1966-71 gothic soap opera Dark Shadows. Although Loomis was Karlen's primary role, he also played other characters in the series including Carl Collins, Desmond Collins, William Hollingshead Loomis and Kendrick Young. In 1970, Karlen reprised the role of Willie Loomis for the MGM film House of Dark Shadows. Karlen returned to the franchise for the film's 1971 sequel Night of Dark Shadows, this time playing the role of Alex Jenkins. Karlen appeared in 182 episodes of the series overall.

John Karlen passed away in Burbank, California on January 22nd, 2020 at the age of 86.

Body of work[edit | edit source]

Film[edit | edit source]

Television[edit | edit source]

Dark Shadows[edit | edit source]


As Willie Loomis[edit | edit source]

As Desmond Collins[edit | edit source]

Notes & Trivia[edit | edit source]

Although John Karlen's most famous role is that of Willie Loomis, he is not the first actor to play the character. Actor James Hall played the role of Loomis in the character's first appearance in episode 199. He played the part for three more episodes before Karlen took over the character with episode 206.

John Karlen is considered a fan favorite at Dark Shadows conventions and has been a regular panel guest for more than thirty years.

Outside of Dark Shadows, Karlen is better known for playing the role of Harvey Lacey, husband to Tyne Daly's Mary Beth Lacey on the 1982-88 crime series Cagney & Lacy.

External Links[edit | edit source]

References[edit | edit source]


Ds logo.jpg
Dark Shadows Actor or Crew member
This article relates to actors, crew members and other behind-the-scenes creators pertaining to the Dark Shadows franchise. This template will categorize articles that include it into the Dark Shadows Crew Members category.
Wide World Mystery Actor or Crew member
This article relates to actors or production crew members pertaining to the Wide World Mystery anthology series. This template will categorize articles that include it into the Wide World Mystery crew members category.
Community content is available under CC-BY-SA unless otherwise noted.