Looking at back at his films since the start of the 2000s, Tim Burton has done two remakes (“Charlie & the Chocolate Factory” and “Planet of the Apes“), one Broadway adaptation (“Sweeney Todd“), another book adaptation (“Big Fish“) and a fairy tale movie (“Alice In Wonderland“). “Corpse Bride” is his last original creation and with the TV-based “Dark Shadows” around the corner, the opportunities to see Burton doing something wholly from his brain seem to be diminishing. So while a full-length version of his 1984 short film “Frankenweenie” might seem a bit underwhelming at first, at least it’s a return to world of his own making. And as these first looks at the film from EW reveal, he’s full embracing the black-and-white aesthetic that was part of the charm of the original.
With a voice cast that includes Winona Ryder, Martin Short, Martin Landau and Catherine O’Hara, the movie will center around a young Victor Frankenstein who reanimates his dog after it’s struck by a car. The great irony here is that Disney is backing the film, when in the ’80s they kept the original “Frankenweenie” short in vault for a decade because it was just too weird. But Burton bears no ill will. “I don’t know, they got freaked out or something, but they still allowed me to make the film,” Burton says. “Even though I was frustrated about the release — or not release of it — it was still a great experience, and did a lot for me, so I couldn’t really complain.”
And while the story has its roots in the classic horror story, Burton tells the magazine that his own childhood pet was also an influence on the film. “His name was Pepe — we lived in a Spanish neighborhood,” Burton remembers. “Our dog had this thing called distemper, and wasn’t supposed to live more than a couple of years. He lived much longer than that, which kind of fed into this Frankenstein mythology as well.”
“Frankenweenie” hits theaters on Oct. 5, 2012.