It seems that Beetlejuice 2, a project which has been mentioned every now and again for decades, truly is underway. Way back in 1990 there was a plan to make something could Beetlejuice Goes Hawaiian, but Burton and star Michael Keaton went on to Batman Returns instead. Beetlejuice 2 re-emerged in 2011 when Warner Bros. hired Abraham Lincoln: Vampire Hunter writers David Katzenberg and Seth Grahame-Smith to work on the script, and the film has been in development hell ever since.
Matt Wavish posted just over a year ago that Tim Burton could be directing and that Winona Ryder is probably involved, while we all know that Keaton has said several times that he wants to reprise the character of Beetlejuice. Currently out promoting the upcoming release of Big Eyes, Burton recently told Coming Soon and that things are really starting to progress with Beetlejuice 2:
“It’s a character that I love and I miss and I miss actually working with Michael. There’s only one Beetlejuice. We’re working on a script and I think it’s probably closer than ever and I’d love to work with him again.”.
Burton also talked to MTV News and insisted that not only are they currently hard at work on a script for the follow-up, but that Winona Ryder will be returning! Asked whether she would also be joining him, Burton replied:
“Oh yeah, yeah yeah yeah. Oh yeah, oh yeah. Yeah yeah, oh yeah. .I worked with Winona Ryder [on the video for The Killers’ song Here With Me back in 2012], I hadn’t seen her in a while … and she was so great. I was so happy to see her. So those kinds of elements mean something to me. Michael, and her … and that character, I just miss it, there’s some freedom about that character that I love”.
“Let’s put it this way, there is only one Beetlejuice for sure. And [the script] is pretty good. And I haven’t really yet spoken to Michael Keaton because he is out on his awards campaign so you can’t get to him now”.
So it sounds like it’s definitely going to happen and I’m certainly looking forward to it, they can do a lot with this character and his world, plus Burton seems to have got his mojo back of late and Keaton certainly has his old energy. I guess the choice of its writer has disappointed some, but I rather liked Abraham Lincoln: Vampire Hunter, while the Graham-Smith scripted Dark Shadows felt like a film almost ruined more in the editing suite than by its script. Working with Jane Goldman, Burton is currently set to follow Big Eyes by adapting Ransom Riggs’ fantasy novel Miss Peregrine’s Home for Peculiar Children, which 20th Century Fox have given a March 4, 2016 release date, so we will have a while to wait before Beetlejuice finally returns, but it’s not as if we haven’t already waited long enough, a couple more years won’t hurt…
Meanwhile Burton has said he’s not too keen on the Marvel movies when asked about them in an interview with Yahoo:
“How many times can you say ‘you’re wearing a funny costume’ with the tights and stuff? That’s been going on for 20 years now. Yes, we all know that superheroes are damaged individuals. Maybe we need to see a happy superhero? You think we need more superhero movies? It keeps on going. It’s amazing how long it’s been going for and it just keeps getting stronger and stronger. Some day people will get sick of it.”
Ironically much of Marvel’s stuff is quite ‘happy’ so I wonder if he’s actually seen any of their films….though like him I hope that some day people will get superhero fatigue like I already have!