When we hear “Directed by Tim Burton” we cannot help but immediately conjure up images of a dark fantastical place with characters who border between interesting and creepy. “Beetlejuice,” “Edward Scissorhands,” “Batman,” “Charlie and the Chocolate Factory,” “Sweeney Todd,” and “Alice and Wonderland,” just to name a few, are probably the reasons we do so. Despite such an impressive resume, the most critical acclaim Burton has received has been Academy Award nominations for animated films like “Corpse Bride” and “Frankenweenie<". From the release of a trailer for the upcoming “Big Eyes”, starring Amy Adams, it looks as though both the image of the public and critics may have to change.“Big Eyes” is based on the true story of Margaret Keane, whose paintings of doll-eyed women and children rose to great success in the 1950s while she struggled through legal battles with her husband who thrived financially by taking credit for all of her work.
The trailer is enough to show that Burton and crew are here to be taken seriously. I am thrilled to see Amy Adams in another period piece after her Oscar nominated performance in “American Hustle.” She has had 5 nominations with 0 wins, and like Burton, is due for a statuette. Her husband, and who appears from the trailer to be the villain, will be played by Cristoph Waltz who has two Oscar wins for best supporting Actor in “Inglorious Bastards” and “Django Unchained”, so it is clear this film has suitable elements for more wins and nominations. My only greatest hope is that in Burton’s eagerness to create a mainstream drama he does not lose his trademark “dark and creepy.” If he is able to give us that fantastical feeling within the constraints of a realistic world he will have struck cinematic gold.