‘Alice in Wonderland 2′ Wants ‘Muppets’ Director
It's been a while since there's been any movement on 'Alice in Wonderland 2' (we knew a script was being worked on), but the big question with the sequel has been "Will Tim Burton and/or Johnny Depp return?" Now, we have an answer for at least one of those questions.
James Bobin is in early negotiations to direct 'Alice in Wonderland 2,' (which is currently going by the title 'Into the Looking Glass') according to Variety. Bobin got his break directing the TV show 'Flight of the Conchords,' and moved on to the big screen with 'The Muppets.' He's currently working on 'The Muppets.... Again!,' and both his feature films have been made for Disney, so it makes sense they want to keep him in house. But it also suggests a less Gothic tone and likely a more practical approach to the follow-up.
But the (multi-)million dollar question is if Johnny Depp will return. Sure, the first movie starred Mia Wasikowska as Alice and featured Anne Hathaway and Helena Bonham Carter, but the marque player was Depp, unquestionably. With Tim Burton out, that may make it less attractive for Depp (though perhaps more attractive to people who didn't like the first film). Johnny Depp's also locked in for shooting 'Pirates of the Caribbean 5' early next year, though -- with Bobin still working on his 'Muppets' sequel (which hits theaters March 21, 2014) -- that may not be an obstacle.
Depp also seems to guarantee a blockbuster budget in the $150-$200 million dollar range, whereas without him, it's unlikely the studio would throw as much money at the sequel. But with this news it seems that Burton (who is likely to get a producing credit) is either not interested or not wanted for the sequel.