Some movie sequels are rushed out within a year, and then there are sequels like George Miller's upcoming release Mad Max: Fury Road, which took three decades to come to fruition. Beetlejuice director Tim Burton has been talking about going down a similar road and making Beetlejuice 2 for years, but with Burton's hectic directing schedule that talk has never quite transformed into concrete plans.
Burton has helmed many successful films over the years, but has only ever directed one sequel: Batman Returns, in which Beetlejuice star Michael Keaton reprised his role as Bruce Wayne. Recently Burton mentioned that he missed working with Keaton and added that, "We’re working on a script [for Beetlejuice 2] and I think it’s probably closer than ever," but there's no news yet as to a planned release date or filming schedule.
The other key star of Beetlejuice was Winona Ryder, who played a lonely teenager called Lydia who befriends a pair of ghosts who are living in the attic of her new house and, eventually, summons the malevolent ghost Betelgeuse as well. Burton and Ryder have worked together a few times over the years, most recently on Frankenweenie and a music video for The Killers, and in an interview with MTV Burton was strongly affirmative when asked if the Beetlejuice 2 script has a part for Ryder. Here are his exact words:
"Oh yeah, yeah yeah yeah. Oh yeah, oh yeah. Yeah yeah, oh yeah."
Obviously Burton saying that Ryder will appear in Beetlejuice 2 doesn't mean that anything official has actually been signed to that effect, since the film is still in early development and the script is still in progress. Burton also admitted that, while Keaton has been enthusiastic about reprising his role, it's been hard to discuss anything while the actor is riding high on the success of his recent film Birdman.
"There's only one Betelgeuse, for sure... I haven't really yet spoken to him because he's out on his awards campaign, so I can't get to him now."
Dark Shadows writer Seth Grahame-Smith is working on the screenplay for Beetlejuice 2 and the film is being produced by The Geffen Company and David Katzenberg, but the real challenge is finding a time when the director (whose next project is the Miss Peregrine's Home for Peculiar Children adaptation starring Eva Green) and the stars of the original all have enough free time to make the sequel.
We'll keep you updated on Beetlejuice 2 as development continues.