If you have dreams of directing your favorite creatively fantastical macabre property someday, watch out. Tim Burton is going to beat you to the punch. The iconic filmmaker has already put his stamp on “Sleep Hollow,” “Charlie and the Chocolate Factory,” “Alice in Wonderland,” the musical “Sweeny Todd” and is prepping a cinematic incarnation of the 60s vampire series “Dark Shadows.” Now, according to Deadline, Burton is planning on giving “The Addams Family” a stop-motion makeover.
Produced by Universal Pictures relatively new Illumination Entertainment division, this new “Addams Family” will not be based on the Barry Sonnenfeld directed films of the early ’90s which starred Raul Julia as Gomez Adams, Angelica Huston as his wife Morticia and, notably, Christina Ricci as their daughter Wednesday. Nor will it be inspired by the ’60s TV series which first brought the characters to mainstream attention. Instead, it will return to the original Charles Addams original drawings that were once a staple of The New Yorker Magazine.
When Burton can truly devote time to “Addams” is unclear. He’s expected to concept the entire look for the film, but is currently working on “Shadows” and a feature length stop motion “Frankenweenie” based on his original breakthrough 1984 short.
Illumination’s first release will be the CG animated “Despicable Me” on July 9. The division is currently headed by Chris Meledandri who helped spearhead Fox’s Blue Sky Animated studios and such hits as “Ice Age” and “Robots.”
Intriguingly, Burton’s “Sleep Hollow” producer, Scott Rudin, produced the Paramount live action “Addams Family” movies and one of his “Hollow” stars was Ricci. It’s common knowledge Rudin and Burton didn’t see eye to eye on “Hollow,” but we’re hoping Ricci could once again lend her voice to an animated Wednesday.
Lastly, this is not the only new “Addams Family” project on the horizon. A Broadway play starring Nathan Lane and BeBe Neuwirth debuts this spring.