A proposed sequel to the 1988 horror-comedy classic Beetlejuice seemed destined to remain a relic of the 1990s (thanks to the infamous Beetlejuice Goes Hawaiian script), but now the word is out that Tim Burton has begun early talks to direct a revamped version of the project, based on a script by Seth Grahame-Smith (Dark Shadows).
However, whatever your personal feelings are towards Burton potentially making Beetlejuice 2, it won't happen for some time now. Multiple news outlets have confirmed that he is in early negotiations to bring the Ghost-with-the-Most back to the big screen, but many of those same reports also mention that he is lined up to direct an adaptation of the novel Miss Peregrine's Home for Peculiar Children first (under the shortened title Peregrine's Home for Peculiars).
Deadline has confirmed that Burton is in "very early negotiations" to direct Grahame-Smith's Beetlejuice 2 script, but the site makes it clear (in no uncertain terms) that he will adapt Rigg's book prior to directing the Beetlejuice sequel (assuming the talks work out). As further proof of that, Fox has already settled on a Summer 2015 release date for Peregrine's Home for Peculiars; meaning, it could only be a matter of months before we start hearing casting announcements for Burton's latest creep-fest (ahead of when production ought to be getting underway during the first half of 2014).
For those who are new to this conversation, Burton has been circling Peregrine's Home for Peculiars for the past two years, but prior to now his involvement didn't seem to be a done deal. Meanwhile, Jane Goldman (X-Men: First Class, The Woman in Black) has been writing a script based on Ransom Riggs' acclaimed novel, which blends creepy vintage photographs with the written word to tell the story of a teenage boy who goes to investigate a mysterious abandoned boarding house (see the title) - one which his recently-deceased grandfather had told him many an odd bedtime tale about, where it concerns the children who used to reside there.
Between Peregrine's Home for Peculiars and the upcoming historical drama/biopic Big Eyes - which Burton has finished shooting and is currently in post-production on - it would seem that the filmmaker is taking some of the constructive criticisms leveled at his work in recent years to heart. At the very least, it's refreshing to see Burton take a break from either re-imagining a famous movie/novel (see: Charlie and the Chocolate Factory, Alice in Wonderland), rebooting an older property (Dark Shadows) or revisiting his past (Frankenweenie) - even though it's not always a bad thing when he does, arguably.
Who knows, maybe working with different actors and actresses (like Big Eyes leads Amy Adams and Christoph Waltz), in addition to collaborating for the first time with newly-blossoming creative talent (like Goldman on Peregrine's Home for Peculiars), will re-invigorate Burton's passion as a storyteller; and thus, benefit the end result with Beetlejuice 2, assuming that Burton signs on the dotted line as director.
Are you glad to hear that Burton isn't moving forward with Beetlejuice 2 right away? Or would you rather that he either make that sequel next or not at all, given that it's already been 25 years since the original Beetlejuice opened in theaters?
Big Eyes doesn't have an U.S. official release date yet.
Peregrine's Home for Peculiars is scheduled to open in theaters on July 31st, 2015.