beetlejuice

First look at the 'younger, punkier' take on Beetlejuice for Broadway

Contributed by
Oct 15, 2018

It’s that time of the year. You know what we mean. The cobwebs are glistening, the undead are rising, and fans are getting their first look at Beetlejuice as he’ll appear on stage. That’s right, Tim Burton’s most famous ghost is heading to Broadway and thanks to EW, we’ve got a first look at his costume.

Played by Alex Brightman, who did a Tony-nominated Jack Black impression during the School of Rock Broadway adaptation, the titular demon debuted the stripey look he’ll wear opposite Sophia Anne Caruso’s Lydia. After a few iterations with different faithfulness to the version pioneered by Michael Keaton, the team, led by director Alex Timbers, decided on the “younger, punkier” look.

Check it out:

Does Beetlejuice have a Beetlebeard? That's not Keaton's mangy scruff, but a beard as well-kempt as the pop-punk hair. That’s not the only change coming to the adaptation, as the show will refocus the story entirely on goth legend Lydia and Beetlejuice.

They will both lean into their status as “trickster figures,” as Timbers calls them, to transcend their secondary stature and run the haunted house. As for the Ghost with the Most himself, “He can directly address the audience,” Timbers says. “He can be an unreliable narrator. He can be a Loki figure, you know? He can be a god of chaos, and that’s really exciting.”

Perhaps hoping to impart some distance between his play and School of Rock, Timbers weighed in on his star’s performance, saying that “[His Beetlejuice] is definitely not a Michael Keaton impression. It’s his own. It’s filtered through the sensibility of Alex Brightman.” But not everything is changing: “The dinner party scene is in the show,” Winters teases, while also noting that the musical will make a trip down below to the Netherworld.

Burton fans will be sure to spot plenty of Easter eggs when Beetlejuice opens at the National Theatre on Nov. 4, then moves to the Winter Garden Theatre in March for an official April 25 open.

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