June 22, 2009-
`Twas brillig, and the slithy toves, Did gyre and gimble in the wabe:
All mimsy were the borogoves, And the mome raths outgrabe.
Thus opens the nonsense poem Jabberwocky by Lewis Carroll featured in ‘Alice Through the Looking Glass’, the continuation of her adventures in Wonderland. With Disney finally releasing pics from Tim Burton’s newest version, that above bit of surreal grotesquery seems appropriate. Just take a look at the three characters! That’s Depp as the Hatter, looking like a cross between Wendy(yes the fast-food one) and Madonna with a bit of Andy Warhol thrown in for good measure. The frightening doll-like creature with the John Wayne Gacy make-up is The Red Queen by way of Helena Bonham Carter. The last is Anne Hathaway as the White Queen, the only image that halfway ‘resembles’ the typical Burton style. The article over at USA Today also mentions that Michael Sheen is the White Rabbit and in my favorite bit of casting, Chris Lee is the ‘Jabberwock”. If you go over to the site, there are larger versions of the production art that visitors can wander around in and magnify at their leisure.
So far, the film looks definitely dark and still wondrous like the original Disney animated film. I’m waiting to see what the Cheshire cat looks like. I’m also impressed that Burton seems capable of going both more surreal and more colorfully fantastic than he has before. Some of these images look like they belong more to the world of Terry Gilliam than Burton and thats encouraging. Gilliam was always willing to go to the darker places while Burton tends to stay dark on surface only.
Who knows, maybe this phantasmagoric children’s romp, which releases on March 10th, 2010, will finally unseat Return to Oz as most disturbing kid’s film based off a popular classic property.
Anyone remember Return to Oz? This is what it looked like:
Below are the rest of the Wonderland pics: