Larry Hagman, Linda Gray, Patrick Duffy, Jesse Metcalfe Turn Out For Season Launch Of New 'Dallas'

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The success of hit series Desperate Housewives paved the way for the return of classic US soap opera Dallas, according to a star of both shows.

Jesse Metcalfe is one of the newcomers in the revamped version of the 1980s drama, which also features former stars Patrick Duffy and Linda Gray, with Larry Hagman reprising his role as JR Ewing.

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Jesse Metcalfe was in London for the launch of Dallas 2012, along with his fiancee Cara Santana

The Dallas cast gathered in central London for the UK launch of the 10-part series about the struggles of the oil-rich Ewing clan, which will air on Channel 5 next month.

Jesse, who found fame as hunky gardener John Rowland in Desperate Housewives, said the popularity of his former show influenced the decision to bring Dallas back to the screen.

He said: "I think Desperate Housewives definitely took its cue from the original Dallas. There's no doubt about that. But I think that Desperate Housewives in some respects is responsible for reopening the door for more scripted drama and more night-time soap operas."

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Three of the original big stars of Dallas - Patrick Duffy, Linda Gray and Larry Hagman - are back for more

Dallas was a huge hit three decades ago when it was shown on BBC1 as viewers were gripped by the rivalry between brothers JR and Bobby, played by Patrick. The famous "Who shot JR?" storyline caused a buzz around the world.

The new series features Jesse and Brenda Strong, with a new generation fighting for the family fortune.

Linda, who plays JR's long-suffering former wife Sue Ellen, said fans should expect similar storylines to those which gripped audiences of the original series.

Patrick added: "There's so much reality television and so many musical contests. This is good old-fashioned drama. It's 'sit on the edge of your seat' kind of fun. I think people need to have fun and not root for somebody to be eliminated."

Dallas 2012 will soon be on Channel 5. Check out the trailer below, and here are the stars new and old in London...

Dallas 2012 London Launch
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