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Now & Then: Tim Burton

This week’s Now & Then actor isn’t an actor but a director - and an iconic one at that.

It’s Tim Burton.

Known for the dark tone of his movies (and for launching Batman to mega heights as a movie franchise), Burton started his career as an animator and storyboard artist at Disney’s animation division after a short film he made called “The Celery Monster” caught their attention.

His first full length live action movie was Pee-wee’s Big Adventure (1985) but it was Beetlejuice (1988) that really put him on the map.

Studio executives were impressed with Burton’s ability to make big hits with low budgets and he was given his first big budget movie, Batman (1989) and we all know how that turned out. 👌

Burton has frequently worked with Johnny Depp (who he’s made eight movies with) and Helena Bonham Carter (with whom he has two children).

He’s also worked on a number of movies with Winona Ryder, Michael Keaton, Danny Devito, Jack Nicholson and Eva Green.

Over the years he’s been considered for and has turned down a lot of movies that went on to be made anyway. Some of these include: X-Men (2000), Spawn (1997), Dick Tracy (1990), The Grinch (2000), Mary Reilly (1996), The Addams Family (1991) and The Fly (1986).

Steven Spielberg even considered him to direct Gremlins (1984) but decided against it since at the time Burton hadn’t directed a full-feature length movie.

Most famously he was set to direct the cancelled Superman film “Superman Lives” written by Kevin Smith back in 1997. It was to star Nicolas Cage as the man of steel and was scheduled for a summer 1998 release.

Burton worked on the project for a year before Warner Bros ordered re-writes and he eventually left to direct Sleepy Hollow (1999).

Superman Lives never ended up getting made and instead we got Superman Returns (2006) which he wasn’t involved in.

He’s a visionary director who has undoubtedly made his mark on modern cinema. 👌

My top Tim Burton film recommendations are:

Beetlejuice (1988)

Batman (1989)

Edward Scissorhands (1990)

Batman Returns (1992)

Mars Attacks (1996)

Sleepy Hollow (1999)

Dark Shadows (2012)

I actually don’t mind Planet of the Apes (2001) either but I much prefer the most recent trilogy. 👌

What’s your favourite Tim Burton Movie? 🤔


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