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"I'm a dead person" - Willem Dafoe on his upcoming Beetlejuice 2 role

It's not entirely what we expected.

Willem Dafoe in The Boondock Saints
Image credit: Indican Pictures

It's hard to come across an acting career as deep and varied as Willem Dafoe's. While most moviegoers will instantly link him to the iconic Green Goblin, one of Spider-Man's biggest on-screen foes, the 68-year-old actor has plenty of experience with any genre and tone you could think of. This year alone, he's appeared in seven movies, but the one getting the most buzz is Yorgos Lanthimos' Poor Things, where he stars alongside Emma Stone. Now, he's finally talked about his role in the long-anticipated sequel to Beetlejuice (1988).

While promoting Poor Things during the 20th edition of the Marrakech Film Festival, Dafoe was asked about the many movies he's got lined up in different stages of production and post-production. One of them is Beetlejuice 2, the kind of sequel that takes forever to make and could potentially land without making much noise. Still, it's Tim Burton's first movie since 2019's Dumbo and a return to some of his most beloved characters, so there's at least some curiosity surrounding the project.

Dafoe confessed he hadn't seen any footage yet, but said his role was "fun to do" and even explained what he was all about in Burton's latest: "I play a police officer in the afterlife, so I’m a dead person. And in life I was a B-movie action star, but I had an accident and that’s what sent me to the other side. But because of my skills, I became a detective character in the afterlife. So that’s my job. But it’s colored by the fact of who I was [when I was alive]: a B movie action star." We have already seen him play cops and plenty of dark characters in the past, so a dead police officer doesn't sound too weird at first. But a B-movie action star who becomes a detective after dying? That's juicier and could potentially pack a nice meta element. Let's just hope he's not around for only one scene.


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Fran Ruiz

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