Inside the making of ‘Sweeney Todd’ with Johnny Depp and Tim Burton


What sort of gift would you bring Johnny Depp, if he were to invite you to his home in the south of France? Six years ago, his director pal Tim Burton turned up with an original cast recording of Sweeney Todd: The Demon Barber of Fleet Street. ''I thought, That's weird,'' says Depp. ''I wonder why he gave me that.'' Broadway zealots have long been obsessed with the show, which won a Tony for Best Musical in 1979. But like most of the general public, Depp is not a Broadway zealot. He never got around to discussing the music with Burton. Still, he came to admire the sweet-and-sour mix of harmony and dissonance in Stephen Sondheim's intricate songs. ''I wouldn't say it's something I would listen to every day, necessarily,'' he admits. ''It's quite large and operatic. I've never been a big-musical sort of guy.''

Neither has Burton, actually. The director can't stand most burst-into-song movie-musical conventions. But he has always loved the heightened, melodramatic mien of Sweeney, in which a kindly man becomes a crazed serial killer. And he's managed to enlist Depp in creating a remarkably faithful film adaptation in which most of the action unfolds in song, pulling it off with something close to carte blanche from key DreamWorks and Warner execs.

(Source: Entertainment Weekly)

Directors, Filmmaking, Hollywood, New Movies

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