Tim Burton had a “day and a half” left filming ‘Beetlejuice 2’ before the shoot was closed down due to the Hollywood strikes.
The moviemaker has opened up about work on the sequel to his 1988 horror comedy – which starred Alec Baldwin, Winona Ryder and Michael Keaton – revealing production was almost complete when they had to shut down due to the SAG-AFTRA actors union joining the Writers Guild of America in an industry-wide walk-out in July.
He told the British Film Institute: “We had a day and a half left before the strike happened. I feel lucky that we got as far as we did. It is like 98, 99 per cent done. It was a great experience. It reinvigorated my love of making movies.”
The new film reunites former cast members Keaton and Ryder, and Burton says it was a joy to pick up the story again. He went on: “It’s so weird because I don’t overly keep in contact with people, but this was very special, because obviously the sequel had been talked about for 35 years. I truly never quite understood the success of the first one. It’s one of life’s beautiful mysteries.
“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 [the characters] … So that anchored the emotion and the feeling, then working with Michael and Winona and Catherine, and also with Jenna [Ortega] and having these new people, all this beautiful new blood into it … Working with these people again, and seeing them all, it was very emotional for me. Again, just going back to the old, same puppets and techniques. It goes back to the good old days.”