Tim Burton Explains Why He Turned Down The Addams Family Movie

Credit: The Addams Family

When you think of Tim Burton, instantly your mind goes to classics such as Beetlejuice, The Nightmare Before Christmas, and Edward Scissorhands; the filmmaker’s unique goth/macabre style throughout his movies quickly makes him stand out in the world of Hollywood. So when the topic of The Addams Family comes up, it feels natural to assume that Tim Burton and The Addams Family fit like a glove. However, Mr. Burton turned down the role, which was revealed last year by director Barry Sonnenfeld during his interview with Variety over the 30th Anniversary of the first Addams Family movie:

“I will tell you that there were two other directors approached – Tim Burton and Terry Gilliam – and they’re both excellent choices. But they both turned it down, so I ended up getting it. [Producer] Scott Rudin wanted a visual stylist, not just a comedy director. So he thought, if I can’t get Tim or I can’t get Terry, I’ll get someone with a strong visual sense.”

Credit: The Addams Family

Initially, it was assumed that the director had a full schedule since Burton was filming Batman Returns. Barry Sonnenfeld ultimately did a great job with The Addams Family and Addams Family Values, but Rudin was right in seeking Burton for the film. The visuals of these characters help tell the story of the family itself, the overall world, and the jokes that are all told throughout. By the time this interview came, Burton was already confirmed for the new Wednesday series; however, the Oscar nominee is now doing the media rounds for the Netflix show, and he reveals a surprising fact: Tim Burton didn’t turn down The Addams Family because he was busy, he had no interest in the product because the story didn’t excite him until receiving Wednesday’s screenplay:

“Just spoke to me about how I felt in school and how you feel about your parents, how you feel as a person,” Burton told Empire. “It gave the Addams Family a different kind of reality. It was an interesting combination.” Although, if you notice, this is Burton’s first venture in streaming/television, it was a format that he was highly intrigued by; it helped gravitate him towards Wednesday even more, “I’d’ never done something like this, you know…television.”

Credit: Wednesday

Burton likely didn’t know Wednesday would be a massive success. At first, it was questionable why the series didn’t come out in time for Halloween. Still, that didn’t matter to fans as Wednesday broke Netflix records by racking up a massive 341.2 million hours viewed in the first seven days on the streaming service. This week, the Netflix series achieved another huge feat by becoming the third most-watched English-language series thanks to its massive total of 752.52 million hours viewed. That means an additional 411. Twenty-nine million hours were watched following the first week of Wednesday. At this pace, Wednesday will likely surpass Stranger Things season four (1.3 billion) and DAHMER – Monster: The Jeffrey Dahmer Story (856 million) in its first 28 days on the streaming service.

Regarding the international chart, Wednesday is trailing behind Money Heist season five, which currently stands at 792.2 million hours. Squid Game, last year’s colossal sensation, remains firmly at the top with 1.65 billion viewers watched. If Wednesday continues going at this pace in viewership, it should have no problems beating both the international shows in record time.

As for Burton, this is undoubtedly a big win for him as the director struggled on the movie side, with his last big hit being Alice in Wonderland in 2010. Indeed a season two is in the works, though Netflix has yet to confirm that news.

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