Here are five things we learned at Fantastic Fest about Tim Burton's latest film, Miss Peregrine's Home for Peculiar Children, hitting theaters on September 30.
Tim Burton whisked Austin away on a Burtonesque adventure when he visited Fantastic Fest this week to promote his new film, Miss Peregrine’s Home for Peculiar Children. On Tuesday, which was proclaimed "Keep Austin Peculiar Day" by the city and local director Robert Rodriguez, we uncovered Burton's love for Austin, the central themes of his film, and his personal connections with the protagonist of Miss Peregrine’s Home for Peculiar Children.
1. On Austin’s peculiar personality:
Even after proving his directorial chops in classics such as Beetlejuice, Edward Scissorhands, and Batman, Burton finds that releasing any film can be an intimidating experience. "I feel weirdly at home here, and I really love the spirit of this place," Burton said of Austin. "It makes it less vulnerable to release my film here."
2. On the difficulties of translating a novel to film:
Many book-to-film adaptations are unpopular with audiences who originally fell in love with the characters and worlds created within the authors’ prose. A challenge for Burton with Miss Peregrine’s Home for Peculiar Children lay in converting the vintage photographs in the novel to the moving images of a film while "still honoring the spirit of the book."
Miss Peregrine's Home for Peculiar Children, starring Eva Green, Asa Butterfield, and Samuel L. Jackson, hits theaters on September 30.
3. On Burton’s character sketches:
An artist from his youth and originally an animator with Disney, Burton’s sketches are iconic in the conceptualization of all of his films. He commends his team for their ability to transform his "doodles" into the fully realized characters that his audiences enjoy. "I’m really lucky to work with people who can take my abstract ideas, and make them into a reality—that is the joy of making film," says Burton.
4. On Burton’s protagonists:
Miss Peregrine’s Home for Peculiar Children exposes a theme that is quite common in the director's work: misfits who are struggling to find their places in the world. It's something Burton draws from his own life experiences, and helps to flesh out the emotional themes of his characters. "I have always felt that same way," says Burton. "You think at some point, [you'll] lose that feeling, but it still continues and it will probably continue until the day I die."
5. On intergenerational relationships:
To lend a stream of realism to the relationship between the main protagonist, Jacob, and his grandfather, Burton relied on his own relationship with his grandmother, which he describes as "magical, much like the one between Jacob and Abe." He also cites fellow Hollywood stars Vincent Price and Christopher Lee as models for the grandfather in the film in regards to the "energy and beauty" of their works.