‘Beetlejuice: The Musical’ is set to take Broadway by storm later this month, and ‘Dumbo’, directed by Tim Burton was the winner at the box office when it debuted. ‘Dumbo’ costars Michael Keaton, who of course played the title ghoul in ‘Beetlejuice’ in 1988. With Burton, Keaton, and ‘Beetlejuice’ back in the front of the public’s thoughts, does this mean that the long-in-gestation ‘Beetlejuice 2’ might finally be headed toward the big screen?
Sadly, no. While promoting ‘Dumbo’, Burton was asked by USA Today what was going on, and he simply muttered:
When pressed on whether he thought this film would ever materialize, he replied, “I don’t know. I doubt it.” He waved off any further questions on this particular topic.
This really should come as no surprise, as the first movie is over 30 years old. The last buzz regarding a sequel was in 2017 when it was reported that a new screenwriter was being sought to have a new flick on the big screen in time for ‘Beetlejuice’s 30th anniversary, but there was nothing but silence since.
In 2016, Keaton was asked about the chance of seeing this sequel happen, and he flatly replied:
“No. Zero. You always hear things, that this is happening, and people seem to know more about it than I do.”
It seems that both the director and star tend to clam up when it comes to the subject of a ‘Beetlejuice’ sequel, and it’s not hard to imagine that after 30 years, they’re probably sick of being asked about it.
A sequel, ‘Beetlejuice Goes Hawaiian’, was greenlit after the first movie performed so well, but simply never materialized. By this point, Burton and Keaton had begun work on the ‘Batman’ films, so that probably explains why ‘Beetlejuice Goes Hawaiian’ fell by the wayside.
Larry Wilson, who co-wrote ‘Beetlejuice’ states:
“The bottom line is, Tim Burton and Michael Keaton are not going to think about a ‘Beetlejuice’ sequel unless it somehow catches the energy of the first film. And that’s not easy. ‘Beetlejuice’ really was lightning in a bottle. But there have been discussions since it really shocked everyone in 1988. And in terms of ‘Beetlejuice Goes Hawaiian,’ wiser heads prevailed. Thank God there’s a level of integrity here.”
But Wilson plans to attend the opening night of the Broadway musical, which has gotten great advanced buzz from critics who have seen bits of it, and from musical selections that have been released.
“I don’t sit around in a bathrobe, watching ‘Beetlejuice’ and waiting for a sequel. But all eyes are going to be on that opening night. It seems like they have really reinvented the movie and it’s looking like a real hit. So we’ll sit tight until then.”