If there’s one thing the world can do without, it’s another film made under the jurisdiction of Tim Burton, whose signature mix of cartoon gothicism and faux-meaningful ‘outsider’ tales has been terrorizing intelligent filmgoers at least once a year for about 23 years. While he’s not busy ruining Helena Bonham-Carter for the rest of us. The one thing we can say for Burton is that he is the ideal person to realize the real-life story of Walter and Margaret Keane, the husband-and-wife painter team of the 50s and 60s whose terrifying portraits of anime-eyed little children probably provided the inspiration for 2009’s Orphan. When news reached us that Burton was behind Big Eyes, a Scott Alexander and Larry Karaszewski directed Keane biopic currently in the works, we were unruffled. When prom king and queen Ryan Reynolds and Reese Witherspoon signed on, however, it was another story.
What could be the appeal for A list stars of obvious career stability (and longevity) in taking on a project this doomed? Can actors still, at this point, be that excited to work with Tim Burton, that they’d throw common sense to the wind? It’s either that, or they have a particular fondness for Orphan.