When your last film grossed a billion dollars globally, you pretty much get to do anything you please as a director. And what Tim Burton would like to do right now is make a movie about monsters. Or maybe vampires, which are also monsters but still different enough to merit their own subgenre. Heat Vision reports that Dreamworks has tapped screenwriter John August to write Monsterpocalypse, a movie based on a board game that Burton is interested in. Burton is also trying to simultaneously pull together an adaptation of the Australian vampire soap “Dark Shadows,” with longtime muse Johnny Depp in the lead role. Which will he choose?
Both Depp and producer Graham King have suggested that “Shadows” could film by the end of the year, after the actor shoots the fourth “Pirates of the Caribbean” installment for Disney this summer. But Depp might want to take a break after shooting “The Tourist” for Columbia and GK Films, which would push back the production of “Pirates” and take Depp off the table for the rest of the year.
And if that happens, Burton would almost certainly film “Monsterpocalypse” first, with Depp and “Shadows” postponed indefinitely. NO! BUT I WANT MY HEARTTHROB DEPP VAMPIRE NOW CONSARNIT!
Burton may also choose to take on “Monsterpocalypse” regardless of what Depp chooses to do at the end of the “Pirates” shoot. That happens with gifted artists. They don’t exactly enjoy sitting around on their hindquarters.
What I find interesting about this is that Burton is a filmmaker whose most out-there ideas require the $100 million plus production budgets only a major studio can provide. Tim Burton will never be the kind of dude who uses his newfound artistic freedom to go make a small character piece about Danish people filmed using only FLIP cameras. Like James Cameron and Robert Zemeckis and Christopher Nolan, Burton wants his ideas on as broad and elaborate a canvas as humanly possible. And that’s a good thing. The world needs directors who are deeply committed to bringing you original ideas that also happen to be wildly expensive. Monsters or vampires? Really, it doesn’t matter. Either way, you folks in the audience are about to get something pretty interesting coming your way.