Tim Burton (born August 25, 1958) is an American film director, producer, writer, and artist. Since directing his first feature, Pee-wee's Big Adventure (1985), he has become famed for his dark and quirky films, such as Beetlejuice, Edward Scissorhands, The Nightmare Before Christmas and Ed Wood, and for his blockbusters, including Batman, Batman Returns, Mars Attacks! and Sleepy Hollow. He frequently works with a close group of collaborators including Johnny Depp, Danny Elfman, Lisa Marie, Glenn Shadix, Deep Roy and Helena Bonham Carter. Burton directed the 2001 movie Planet of the Apes. The movie, which had been in stalled production for years before Burton signed onto the project, was an entirely new movie rather than a remake, and owed very little to either the original novel or the first movie, but was instead a mix of plots, themes and lines from both, along with new material.

Planet of the ApesEdit

20th Century Fox, after many false-starts, began meeting with several top directors and writers about relaunching the Apes franchise in 1999, and spoke to Tim Burton and Frank Darabont (The Green Mile) about directing the movie, before Burton was chosen in February 2000. Burton said "I wasn't interested in doing a remake or a sequel of the original 'Planet of the Apes' film, but I was intrigued by the idea of revisiting that world. Like a lot of people, I was affected by the original film. I wanted to do a 're-imagining'."[1] Burton began some 'tweaking' of William Broyles Jr.'s script, while Stan Winston - who had previously worked with Burton on Edward Scissorhands and Batman Returns - was replaced by makeup wizard Rick Baker in May. Fox considered using computer-generated imagery to create the apes, but Burton insisted on using Baker's prosthetic makeup. Burton commented, "I have a relationship with both of them, so that decision was hard. Stan worked on 'Edward Scissorhands' and Baker did Martin Landau's makeup [as Béla Lugosi in 'Ed Wood']".[2]

Rumors at the time suggested Burton planned a "Cornelius-like" role for his friend Paul Reubens - a part later attributed (falsely) to regular collaborator Johnny Depp, who supposedly did several make-up tests in August.[3] Helena Bonham Carter signed in August, playing an "ape princess". Mirroring the uproar concerning an ape/human Hybrid Child appearing in Beneath the Planet of the Apes, Fox executives were opposed to the idea that Carter's character would be the love interest of Wahlberg's character, thinking it 'weird and unnatural'. Burton had a love scene planned, but even an implied love scene was rejected.[3]

Under Burton's direction, Broyles wrote another draft script. However, Broyles treatment was projected at a $200 million budget, while Fox wanted to cut it to $100 million.[1] Burton was rumoured to have been contractually obliged to cover any over-spend personally, and in August 2000, two months before principal photography, Broyles quit the project over further script changes.[4] The production was a difficult experience for Burton, largely due to Fox's adamant release date (July 2001), which meant that everything from pre-production to editing and visual effects work was rushed.[1] By October, Fox had hired Lawrence Konner and Mark Rosenthal to simplify the script. Konner and Rosenthal were rewriting the script even as sets were being constructed.[4] The title of the production changed from The Visitor back to its original title, Planet of the Apes. The new movie didn't have the political edge of the original, simply because the world had moved on since then. What it did have was a distinguished cast and incredible make-up. "The basic upside-down world - that's very much the same", said producer Richard D. Zanuck. "The story is entirely different, the characters are entirely different. In terms of the logistics, this is much bigger".[5]


  • Actress Lisa Marie was the partner of Tim Burton from 1992 to 2001, and starred in most of his films during that period. Planet of the Apes was their last project together before they separated. Burton then began a long-term relationship with her Apes co-star Helena Bonham Carter.



2001 Concept Art34

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