Helena Bonham Carter plays it crazy again


A couple of stills from Tim Burton’s update of Stephen Sondheim’s Sweeney Todd set to be released in January 2008, have been making the internet rounds.  Theoretically I’m ambivalent about the project — it’s in keeping with a current trend of remaking classics I’m generally skeptical about.  But never mind.  Some women I’d go see in an animated musical about a maggot-infested corpse rising from the grave in a quest to become a bride (er, hang on), and one of them is Helena Bonham Carter.  Here’s a still from Sweeney Todd:

Yep, that’s Johnny Depp with the straight razor. And I already love the Burtonesque feel to the set.  If you’re not familiar with this project, Burton, Depp, and Carter have reunited to remake the tale of madness, murder, and suspiciously delicious meat pies. Carter will be adding yet another demented female role to her resume as Mrs. Lovett, the woman whose meat pies become the toast (pastry?) of London with the addition of a very special secret ingredient.  You know, the one that made the BBQ so fine in Fried Green Tomatoes.

But my admiration for Carter goes far beyond her penchant for quirky roles in some of my most beloved movies. Take Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix.  Although the film itself doesn’t quite make my A list (liked it, though), Bellatrix LeStrange is certainly one of my favorite villains ever, and Carter was perfection beyond words in the role. The black leather, cleavage and crackling greenish magic would be enough to remind us why crazy is a good look on Carter. But then there’s her hair.  Now that surely took a truly magical touch.

Actually, I’ve always been a fan of Carter’s hair, which seems to be nearly as versatile as her acting chops:

So we can at least look forward to that. Besides Depp and Carter, the cast is stacked with heavy hitters. To name a few: Alan Rickman, Anthony Head (Giles!), and Sacha Baron Cohen.  (Yes, of Borat fame.  I can’t speak to Cohen, since I can’t bring myself to sit down to watch that. But maybe some of you have.)

Christopher Lee was signed on as a ghost, but unfortunately his character was axed a couple of months ago. Still, I think I’ll be heading for the theater for this one. And perhaps I’ll finally be able to forgive Burton the remake of Willy Wonka.  Perhaps.