Beetlejuice 2: First look at Michael Keaton, Winona Ryder and Jenna Ortega in Tim Burton sequel

Beetlejuice 2: First look at Michael Keaton, Winona Ryder and Jenna Ortega in Tim Burton sequel

Thirty-six years after the original, fans finally have their first taste of the comedy horror sequel Beetlejuice Beetlejuice with the first cast pictures revealed.

Warner Bros has shared an image of Michael Keaton as Betelgeuse (the spelling is the film’s inconsistency, not ours!) reprising his role from the 1988 original Beetlejuice.

The second image also features first-look shots of the returning Winona Ryder as Lydia Deetz alongside newcomers Justin Theroux as the mysterious Rory and Jenna Ortega as Astrid Deetz.

Tim Burton is back to direct the sequel (which is presumably named twice because it is so good?) which will be in cinemas on September 6.

The original film saw a recently deceased couple return to their former home as ghosts and contact Beetlejuice, a "bio-exorcist" from the Netherworld, to help scare away the new inhabitants - the Deetz family.

As for the new one, there is not yet a trailer and don’t let the DIY efforts of any YouTube wisecrackers try and make you believe otherwise.

So this is what we know so far…

 (Warner Bros. Pictures)
(Warner Bros. Pictures)

Why has the sequel taken so long?

The 1988 original was a critical and commercial success which naturally led to a sequel being put into development in 1990.

Mad ideas, such as a script featuring Beetlejuice in Hawaii, were never moved forward as Burton directed numerous other films, leaving Keaton to play Batman and Ryder to achieve superstardom in her early 20s.

The Hawaii script was scrapped in the late 90s with Ryder being too old by that point to play a teenager. And that was it for another 15 or so years until signs of life emerged in 2011 when Warner Bros hired Seth Grahame-Smith to write a sequel on the condition that Keaton would return.

Grahame-Smith’s name is credited to the story for Beetlejuice Beetlejuice, so it seems his work has survived, but the project again went cold in the late 2010s.

In 2022, Warner Bros confirmed it was back on with Brad Pitt’s Plan B as the production studio. Burton, Ryder and Keaton were announced to be on board later that year.

 (AFP via Getty Images)
(AFP via Getty Images)

Who is in the cast for Beetlejuice Beetlejuice (AKA the sequel)?

Of course, Michael Keaton is Betelgeuse, the devious and sharp-witted main character who has become famous for his pin-striped suits.

Winona Ryder played teenage goth Lydia Deetz in the original with Catherine O’Hara’s Delia being her mother. The pair are central to the plot as humans bond with the ghosts despite Betelgeuse’s efforts to scare them off.

They will both be back alongside Jenna Ortega - who played the titular Wednesday in the gothic Netflix series. She will play Astrid - the teenage daughter of Lydia (doesn’t time fly…).

Other cast members include Monica Bellucci as Beetlejuice’s wife as well as Willem Dafoe as a ghost detective and Justin Theroux as Rory - a part we don’t know too much about.

 (Warner Bros. Pictures)
(Warner Bros. Pictures)

What can we learn from the photos that have been released?

The details of the plot are under wraps so the two photos are about as much as we have to work with at the moment.

The shot of O’Hara, Ortega, Ryder and Theroux shows the four at a funeral - although it is unclear if this is for Lydia’s dad Charles Deetz (not pictured) or another character.

Keaton’s Betelgeuse appears in an attack looking wide-eyed and animated. Again, no further detail - so speculation is rife.

A previous update had already alerted us to the news that the pinstripe suit is back.

Costume designer Colleen Atwood said: “Beetlejuice has to have a striped suit. It's like doing Alice in Wonderland. [She] needs a blue dress. How long they wear it is another thing. But Beetlejuice, that is the quintessential Beetlejuice.”

She added that Keaton had argued back, saying the character is better known for a burgundy tux.

“The world happens to disagree with him,” Atwood added. “It’s a funny thing.”