It looks like enough people are saying the name “Beetlejuice” out loud to bring back the bio-exorcist for a sequel. Director Tim Burton recently confirmed that his efforts to make a follow-up to the popular 1988 horror-comedy are moving closer to the screen.
Speaking to IGN to promote his upcoming film “Big Eyes,” Burton said he’s totally on board to do another “Beetlejuice” movie as long as Michael Keaton is able to reprise his role as the foul-mouthed haunt-for-hire.
"There’s only one Beetlejuice, and that’s Michael. There is a script, and I would love to work with him again," Burton teased. "I think there is now a better chance than ever… I miss that character. There’s something that’s cathartic and amazing about it. I think it’s closer than ever."
Keaton, who's getting Oscar buzz for his performance in the dark comedy “Birdman,” previously has said he’d be thrilled to return to the Beetlejuice role as long as Burton was involved. The script the director is referring to was reportedly penned by Seth Grahame-Smith, the writer behind “Abraham Lincoln: Vampire Hunter” and “Pride and Prejudice and Zombies.” The film will not be a remake of the original, but a full-fledged sequel set 27 years later.
The third and final piece of the puzzle would be bringing back actress Winona Ryder, who played Lydia Deetz. The actress has said in the past that she remembers the character fondly and would love to see what she’s up to 27 years later -- hopefully still dancing in mid-air.
MTV News recently asked the director if there was a place for Ryder in the script.
“Oh, yeah, yeah, yeah, yeah,” Burton replied.
With all the pieces falling into place, fans of the first film are digesting the idea of a “Beetlejuice 2,” and so far it's not going down too well. Ryder addressed these claims in an interview with the Daily Beast last year, saying, "It's a very precious movie to people. So there are a lot people, like, 'DON'T.'"
Despite her cautious apprehension, fans are still shaky on the idea of retreading such hallowed ground (pun intended).
I'm not sure how I feel about a Beetlejuice sequel. I think I'll be fine if Michael Keaton can play Beetlejuice again.
— Buzzita Killington (@PerkyBlackChick) December 23, 2014
The sequel to Beetlejuice will not be good. Stop wishing for it.
— Julie Schuler (@mygoodbabushka) December 23, 2014
While Tim Burton has a cadre of loyal fans, it’s worth mentioning that “Beetlejuice 2” would only be his second attempt at a sequel. Previously Burton’s movies have stood the test of time, with “Batman Returns” the one exception. But it’s possible that if it weren’t for “Batman,” Burton would have been forced to do an inferior “Beetlejuice” sequel in 1990. According to WhatCulture, Burton was approached to do another film, but he wasn’t interested. So, he reportedly turned in the worst idea he could think of: “Beetlejuice Goes Hawaiian. Enough said.
While the director had a distaste for the idea of a sequel, it’s been more than two decades since the original, and now the parties seem more open to a follow-up.