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Reese Witherspoon & Ryan Reynolds Out, Amy Adams & Christoph Waltz In For 'Big Eyes,' Tim Burton To Direct

by Kevin Jagernauth
April 2, 2013 8:28 PM
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So, where do we start with "Big Eyes"? Well, let's go with a brief history lesson. Developing for at least six years if not longer, the project comes from Scott Alexander and Larry Karaszewski ("Ed Wood," "The People Vs. Larry Flynt," "Man On The Moon") and with two big lead roles, over the years Thomas Haden Church and Kate Hudson became attached, and in 2012 Ryan Reynolds and Reese Witherspoon were linked, with Tim Burton slated to produce the effort that would serve as the screenwriters' directorial debut. But it looks Burton is going to take it all for himself with a pretty killer leading duo.

Deadline reports that Burton will direct the movie, that is now set up at The Weinstein Company, in what looks like a welcome 180 for the helmer, and something that's much more of a small scale domestic drama. The film will tell the true story of married couple Walter and Margaret Keane, who became art world phenomenons in the 1950s and 1960s thanks to their paintings of large-eyed children. However, when they split up, a legal battle ensued, with Walter trying to take credit for paintings which were actually done by his wife. But when it came to a showdown in count, where they actually faced off canvas vs. canvas, Margaret emerged victorious while Walter tried to feign a pain in his arm.

There's no word yet if this will indeed be next Burton -- he's got a few options -- but this kind of casting doesn't come along everyday, we presume this is on the front cooker for the filmmaker. It has been awhile since we've had something to truly be excited about from Burton, but this looks like something that could be genuinely challenging and take him far away from his usual wheelhouse of tropes and tricks. So, fingers crossed.

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  • Rick | April 4, 2013 11:21 AMReply

    Damn, that is quite the upgrade. Its bittersweet though because I liked the idea of Ryan Reynolds taking on an interesting project, instead of another rom-com or wet-behind-the-ears action role.

  • Rick | April 4, 2013 11:22 AM

    Just to reiterate though, Waltz is so much better I actually feel guilty for even saying that.

  • Kal | April 3, 2013 10:13 PMReply

    Sounds good. If anyone can make this project interesting, it's these folks.

  • an observer | April 3, 2013 11:36 AMReply

    This project has really evolved. The first couple was Haden Church and Kate Hudson, then Ryan Reynolds and Resse Witherspoon and now Chris and Amy. All of these people are capable actors.

  • Pamela | April 2, 2013 11:51 PMReply

    i don't like reese witherspoon either, her only interesting choice has been election, the rest is very blah, even walk the line, she won the oscar because they usually reward biopics or films about the holocaust

  • Steve Wacker | April 2, 2013 9:50 PMReply

    Scott Alexander and Larry Karaszewski directed "Screwed" in 2000.

  • Real | April 2, 2013 9:16 PMReply

    This is great news! I've followed this project for ages and this is by far the best group attached. Hopefully we will see a return to from from Tim Burton on this one and he will do some 'Ed Wood' calibre directing work.

  • Andre | April 2, 2013 8:40 PMReply

    Amazing casting and amazing director. It would be good to see Burton doing more drama. And it is a blash to see neither Johnny Depp nor his wife in this.

  • André | April 2, 2013 8:40 PM

    a BLAST*

  • Kling | April 2, 2013 8:34 PMReply

    Thank Burton Witherspoon isn't in this. Untalented romcom actress.

  • kal | April 3, 2013 10:12 PM

    Ryan Reynolds IS talented. More talented than Witherspoon in my book. Buried, The Nines, Smokin' Aces, among others. He's proven himself to be a very capable and versatile actor.

  • Michelle | April 3, 2013 11:23 AM

    Witherspoon has always been likable and has certain talents, but I agree that she maneuvers between movies that are just plain crap (romcoms), and characters she is just wrong for, like Water for Elephants, which was a very bland, toothless movie that happened to have an extremely good performance from Christoph Waltz, actually. Very happy to see him lining up projects like this now. Especially with Amy Adams. I hope this goes into speedy production.

  • OOGLE MONSTER | April 2, 2013 9:54 PM

    LOL @ David's logic. GOOP has an Oscar and she's barely serviceable. An Oscar doesn't necessarily measure innate talent. Great campaigning and a solid narrative help, too. But Witherspoon IS talented. Not NEARLY as talented as the lovely Amy Adams, but she was great in Election. Ryan Reynolds on the other hand... talk about a super upgrade with Waltz.

  • David | April 2, 2013 9:26 PM

    If she's untalented then why does she has an Oscar?

  • eric | April 2, 2013 8:38 PM

    I tolerated her in Walk the Line but she was the worst part of it.

  • jt | April 2, 2013 8:38 PM

    Wrong. Reese Witherspoon has talent, but most of her film choices has been horrid.

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