Top 10 Tim Burton Movies That Never Happened
Tim Burton is an iconic filmmaker. For the last thirty years, he has made us laugh, cry, and fear with a unique visual style that sets him apart from every other director in Hollywood. But, what may be more interesting than the movies he has released are the ones that never got made. Here is our ranking of the ten most promising films that Tim Burton was developing but never made it to the silver screen. If you know of one we missed, let us know in the talk backs below.
In the early 2000s, Tim Burton was involved as a producer on a TV series set in the land of Oz. Starring Melissa George, the series would have pre-dated recent Oz projects like SyFy's Tin Man and Sam Raimi's OZ THE GREAT AND POWERFUL. It would have been cool to see this show but only a pilot was filmed before the show was scrapped for being too expensive. You can watch the full, unreleased pilot on YouTube
Burton went as far as to write a script for his remake of the 1963 cult classic film. Featuring a cast of relative unknowns, X: THE MAN WITH THE X-RAY EYES was exactly the type of film that Burton loved as a child. While MARS ATTACKS! may be his only foray into the genre, it would be cool to see him tackle another pulpy scifi thriller.
While Burton's connection to stop motion animation has resulted in several wonderful movies, his partnership with Illumination Entertainment to adapt the beloved comic/series The Addams Family into a family film has gone unrealized. Burton was set to produce and write the film and possibly direct, but it never came to be.
Another favorite of Burton's from a bygone era, BLACK SUNDAY is a Mario Bava masterpiece. An Italian Gothic horror film unlike any other, this could have been a great companion to SLEEPY HOLLOW. Burton does horror as well as anyone, especially when he takes it seriously. Of all the films on the list, this is one I am most intrigued to see happen.
During filming of EDWARD SCISSORHANDS, Burton became close with his childhood idol, Vincent Price. The elderly actor filmed conversations with the director over a three day period. After Price's death, Burton returned to try and complete the film but never did. It remains one of the few projects that Burton actually worked on but has yet to see the light of day.
A project long in development hell, Ripley's Believe It Or Not got as far as to name Jim Carrey as the star and get a script penned by the writers of ED WOOD. Paramount Pictures shelved the project when it ran over budget and Burton then left the director's chair. It has remained in stasis ever since. But, the amazing life of Robert Ripley would make for ideal Burton material.
Burton had two projects developing in the early 1990s: MARS ATTACKS! and this western/monster movie that would have paired Clint Eastwood and Jack Nicholson. That's right, a western with two of the biggest Hollywood icons of all time as they battle a supernatural creature. Burton chose to make MARS ATTACKS! instead.
The sordid journey of SUPERMAN LIVES is well documented thanks to Kevin Smith and the recent documentary chronicling the ordeal to get Burton's film made. The man who made BATMAN almost gave us Nicholas Cage as the last son of Krypton. Alas, despite a movie poster and some raw footage of the suit, we never got to see if Burton could have resurrected DC's other iconic hero.
Tim Burton's work shares a lot in common with the writings of Edgar Allan Poe, but we have never seen the two masters combine their efforts. This tale, one of Poe's most famous, has been adapted numerous times but Burton could have brought something unique to the tale of horror, murder, ghosts, and incest. This is another project that Burton shelved in favor of making MARS ATTACKS!
Dreamworks purchased the rights to the Kaiju-themed role playing game of the same title with Burton on board to direct it. That was back in 2010. Since then, PACIFIC RIM has been released to critical acclaim but weak box office, so the odds are this one will never happen. But, can you imagine Burton directing a massive GODZILLA-like monster movie? That would be amazing.