5 Apr – Eccentric director Tim Burton is bringing in an old colleague for his upcoming remake of Disney's animated classic, "Dumbo".
Michael Keaton, Burton's long-time frequent collaborator, is currently in talks to play the movie's villain, according to Variety.
While nothing has been confirmed, Keaton is said to have been called in to play Vandemere, the exploitative businessman who buys Dumbo's circus from Danny DeVito's circus owner character.
The role was previously offered to Tom Hanks, but he seems to have passed up on it and while some are slightly disappointed by that, most agree that Keaton would be a great fit for the part.
So far, Eva Green is also being eyed to star in the movie as a trapeze artist while Colin Farrell is considering playing the lead role, which Will Smith was previously considered for.
If Keaton does accept the offer, then it wouldn't be the first time the former superhero plays a villain. He is playing Vulture, the villain in the upcoming superhero film, "Spider-Man: Homecoming", and has been nominated and won awards for his roles in "Birdman" and "Spotlight".
The last time Burton and Keaton worked together was for "Batman Returns" in 1992, with Burton helming the movie starring Keaton as the Caped Crusader.
Before that, the two Hollywood A-listers also worked together on the prequel, "Batman" in 1989, and the stand-alone comedy, "Beetlejuice" in 1988, almost exactly 30 years ago, both with Keaton as the main characters.
Recently, Disney has been scoring big with its remakes of its best classics. With this A-list cast and crew, then it won't be much of a surprise that "Dumbo" will only build upon Disney's success.
With the studio's live-action/animated hybrid films like 2014's "Maleficent" and last year's "The Jungle Book" making over USD750 million and USD960 million worldwide, respectively, and with the recently released "Beauty And The Beast" grossing over USD880 million around the globe in under a month, one can see exactly how well the reimagined animated classics are doing.
Currently, live-action versions of "The Lion King", "The Little Mermaid" and "Mulan" are also in the making.
"Dumbo" is still in the early stages of pre-production and a release date has yet to be announced.