Tim Burton to direct live-action 'Dumbo': Brilliant pairing or Disney's ruin?

Tim Burton is set to direct the live-action remake of "Dumbo." Why fans are worried, but Disney is not.

Mark A. Large/AP/The Daily Times/ Ringling Brothers and Barnum and Bailey Circus/File
Tim Burton will direct Disney's upcoming live-action "Dumbo" movie.

Did you ever see an elephant fly? As it turns out, Tim Burton will be responsible for making sure you do.

Disney recently announced its classic story of “Dumbo,” the baby elephant with large ears, will be remade into a live-action film that will combine both live actors and computer generated effects. The film will be directed by Tim Burton, the filmmaker behind “Batman” and “Big Eyes,” produced by Justin Springer of “Tron: Legacy,” and written by Ehren Kruger of “Transformers.”

Notorious for spinning films in a dark, peculiar light, Burton is sure to take “Dumbo” in a unique direction. Will he turn Disney’s beloved classic into a magical wonderland or a disturbing nightmare?

This is not Burton’s first Disney project. He was behind the magic of 2010’s remake of “Alice in Wonderland,” which grossed more than $1 billion worldwide, becoming one of Disney’s most successful live-action films. In this light, choosing Burton was not that difficult of a choice for Disney.

Walt Disney Pictures president of production Sean Bailey has said little about the film, which is still in development, reported the Wall Street Journal. He did say of the story that “it’s a big world,” possibly alluding to a bigger story that Burton will tackle in the upcoming movie.

Fans of both Burton and Disney are already expressing their opinion of the announcement on Facebook and Twitter, and the majority seem skeptical. Helen Peterson posted on Facebook: “Lord almighty. The pink elephants on parade gave me nightmares as a child. I can only imagine what Tim Burton’s version will do to me.”

Others try to guess who will star in the film. With Tim Burton often using the same cast in many of his movies, social media users are curious what role Johnny Depp will play in the film.

Skeptics are also quick to point out the many racist moments in the original Disney film, as well as unethical treatment of animals. People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals has already released a statement requesting that Burton alter the ending of the film. Lisa Lange, a PETA senior vice president, wrote an open letter to Burton:

"We're hopeful that in your adaptation of Dumbo, the young elephant and his mother can have a truly happy ending by living out their lives at a sanctuary instead of continuing to be imprisoned and abused in the entertainment industry," reported The Hollywood Reporter.

Regardless of your feelings towards the film and Burton’s capacity to reboot the classic, it is scheduled to happen. The release date has not been announced, but in time we will see what Burton has brewing.

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