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Will Michael Keaton be in Beetlejuice 2?

He's the ghost with the most, babe!

michael keaton

After decades of false starts, failed attempts, and half-finished scripts, there’s finally going to be a Beetlejuice 2! Will Michael Keaton, who wowed audiences as the undead trickster Betelgeuse (pronounced “Beetlejuice”), be reprising his role in the new sequel? Here’s what we know so far!

If you love campy horror, or 80s movies, or both, then chances are you’re a Beetlejuice fan. The original Beetlejuice, which was directed by Tim Burton way back in 1988, tells the story of the Maitlands (Alec Baldwin and Geena Davis), who die when their car falls into a stream. They come home and realize that they’ve died when they find another family, the Deetzes (Catherine O’Hara, Jeffrey Jones, and Winona Ryder), moving into their house. Determined to scare the interlopers away, the Maitlands enlist the help of Beetlejuice (Keaton), who promises to get them their home back but instead unleashes chaos all over town.

The Maitlands (Geena Davis and Alec Baldwin) distort their faces. Barbara Maitland has her jaw stretched out and her eyes on her tongue, and Adam has his face stretched out into a beak shape.

There’s so much to love about Beetlejuice. There’s the over-the-top ridiculous visuals: the sandworms that attack the Maitlands when they try to leave their home, the horrific waiting room where the Maitlands wait to talk to their caseworker, and the unforgettable scene where, attempting their first haunting, the Maitlands stretch and distort their faces into grotesque masks. There’s also the existential horror of the bureaucracy of the afterlife, with the Maitlands only realizing they’re dead when they find a copy of The Handbook for the Recently Deceased sitting in their living room. Finally, there’s the friendship between the Maitlands and Lydia Deetz (Ryder), a melancholy girl who can see ghosts, and who acts as a stand-in for every goth girl who has ever longed for contact with the supernatural.

The original Beetlejuice was one of Tim Burton’s most memorable films ever, landing a 1989 Oscar for best makeup, among other awards. Will Beetlejuice 2 recreate the magic?

Who’s Involved in Beetlejuice 2?

Beetlejuice 2 is still in very early development. As far as we know, there isn’t even a finished script yet. But we do have some details.

Although there’s no director attached yet, Bratt Pitt’s production company, Plan B, has taken the helm on the project, so we might see things move pretty quickly from here on out. According to a report on The Ankler, Michael Keaton is expected to return to the titular role, with Winona Ryder also returning. If true, these returning roles could give us some insight into the plot. Will the new movie focus on Lydia all grown up? Will she need to enlist Beetlejuice’s help for another bio-exorcism?

Hopefully we won’t have to wait long to find out!

(image: Warner Bros.)

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Julia Glassman (she/her) lives in Los Angeles, where she reads tarot and watches Marvel movies. You can check out more of her writing at linktr.ee/juliaglassman, or find her on Twitter at @juliaglassman.