Tim Burton is about to become the latest major filmmaker to make the jump to television – and he’s doing it with perhaps the least surprising property of all.
Burton is developing a new version of The Addams Family, the classic franchise featuring a creepy, kooky, mysterious, and spooky family living in suburbia. If the deal goes through, the eccentric director of Batman, Beetlejuice, and Edward Scissorhands will be working on this iteration of the show with Alfred Gough and Miles Millar, the guys behind Smallville, The Shannara Chronicles, and Into the Badlands. Get details about the new Tim Burton Addams Family show below.
Deadline reports that Burton is “negotiating to executive produce and possibly direct all episodes of this new take” on the Addams Family franchise. Assuming all goes well, Gough and Millar will serve as head writers and showrunners of the series, which is being financed by MGM TV and is currently seeking a home. Netflix is said to be at the top of the list of potential buyers, although multiple companies are bidding on the new show.
According to the outlet, “the new live-action series would be set in present times and be from the perspective of Wednesday Addams and what the world would look like to her in 2020.” I hope that can be translated as “what the world would look like to her in modern times” and not 2020 specifically, because once we exit this godawful year, I seriously doubt that anyone is going to want to relive it any time soon – even through the prism of a character like Wednesday, the deadpan teenaged daughter of the family.
The fact that Burton is involved with a new Addams Family seems to complete his descent into self-parody. But I understand where he’s coming from: he took a chance making Big Eyes a few years ago, which was a movie that did not conform to his regular aesthetics at all, and audiences rejected it. So he’s continuing his retreat toward his familiar habits.
Personally, I’d love to see him make this show with a roster of actors that he’s never worked with before rather than just casting Helena Bonham Carter as Morticia and Johnny Depp as Gomez and calling it a day. But we’ll have to wait and see how far he’s willing to step outside of his comfort zone on this one.
This won’t be Burton’s first step into the world of TV, since he previously executive produced the Beetlejuice animated series in the late ’80s and early ’90s. But it will be his first live-action television project that he’s overseeing. Trivia: in 1986, Burton directed one episode of a Showtime TV series called Shelley Duvall’s Faerie Tale Theatre focusing on Aladdin, and the episode starred Robert Carradine, Valerie Bertinelli, Leonard Nimoy, and James Earl Jones.
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