Last we heard, Tim Burton was waiting on Seth Grahame-Smith for a status report on the long-mooted Beetlejuice sequel. Grahame-Smith has just told Shock that he hasn't written it yet, but he has spoken to Michael Keaton, and been thoroughly encouraged to turn on the juice and see what shakes loose.
"I met with Michael last week," says Seth, "and his excitement level is huge. We talked for a couple of hours about big-picture stuff. He's been wanting to do it for twenty years and he'll talk to anybody about it who will listen!"
Incredibly, it's actually been longer than that, since the original Beetlejuice first terrorised audiences in 1988. Since then we've had a kooky cartoon series and there was talk for a long time about an official sequel in Beetlejuice Goes Hawaiian, which eventually came to nothing.
Grahame-Smith says that this time, Beetlejuice 2 is very much a going concern: "It's a priority for Warners and it's a priority for Tim." But he's keen to emphasise that he doesn't want to taint the first movie. "I have a huge reverence for Tim and a huge reverence for that film in general," he promises. "I don't think we should do it if we shit on the legacy. Michael agrees. So, right now, it remains to be seen. I have a couple of story ideas, but we're very early out."
The writer's immediate next project is an animated film for Burton, which he'll follow with a screenplay for his comic-book adaptation Unholy Night. It's only after those two that he'll be able to turn his full attention to the ghost with the most.
The Grahame-Smith-penned Dark Shadows is out in the UK on May 11, and Abraham Lincoln: Vampire Hunter follows on August 2.