Date: 19th September 2023

Michael Keaton Was Hesitant to Return for Beetlejuice 2.

Director Tim Burton reveals how Michael Keaton was reluctant to return for the Beetlejuice sequel.

In an illuminating conversation with the British Film Institute, Tim Burton, the mastermind behind the original grotesque comedy, recounted the journey of coaxing Keaton back into the fold. A journey that saw Keaton traversing from a stance of ambivalence to immersing himself wholly, exhibiting a performance that Burton described as nothing short of "beautiful".

It was, according to Burton, akin to witnessing "demon possession", a fervent and unhinged essence that transported everyone on set back to the magical chaos that Beetlejuice originally encapsulated. Burton said:

"He was the same way. He didn’t want to do it initially he had no necessarily burning desire, but I have to say, it was the most fun. It reminded me of back in the old days, this unhinged thing unleashed on the set. I was quite shocked at how easy it was for him to kick it back into it. It was like demon possession."

Along with Keaton, it's been confirmed that Winona Ryder will also return to reprise her role as Lydia Deetz. Catherine O'Hara is also back as Delia Deetz, while Wednesday star Jenna Ortega has joined the cast as Lydia's daughter. It has also been revealed that Willem Dafoe will appear in the movie as an afterlife law enforcement officer.

Burton says that when creating Beetlejuice 2, he was driven by the desire of wanting to know what had transpired in the lives of the original film's characters:

"When I did this one, I didn’t look at the first movie, because it didn’t feel like it would help. I treated it just very much as a project where, after 35 years, the anchor for me is what happened to Lydia, what happened to the Deetz family? What happened to the living people? What happens to people we see at one stage in their life, then you see them many years later? What the f--- happened to that person? What happened to Catherine? What happened to Charles? This is what interests me. This is what gives it an anchor for me. Where are these people after 35 years? So that anchored the emotion and the feeling, then working with Michael and Winona and Catherine, and also with Jenna and having these new people, all this beautiful new blood into it."

Source: Press Release



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