Michael Keaton and Tim Burton: Before we were constantly assaulted with Johnny Depp in increasingly frightening wigs and ever-thicker grease paint, Burton had a different muse. That’s not to say that Depp and Burton haven’t made beautiful music together, but the song’s gotten a little tired at this point, and it doesn’t have the same funky beat it used to. A re-coupling with Keaton wouldn’t necessarily cure Burton of his upsetting addiction to CGI, but it couldn’t hurt either. There have been rumors of a Beetlejuice sequel, but that’s not at all what I’m talking about. Burton has had plenty of opportunity of late to rehash old material. I’d like to see him take on something new.
Last Collaboration: Batman Returns (1992)
Mel Brooks and Gene Wilder: BECAUSE I MISS BOTH OF THEM TOO MUCH, THAT’S WHY.
Last Collaboration: Young Frankenstein (1974)
Diane Keaton and Woody Allen: I don’t have much to complain about when it comes to Allen’s recent work. Blue Jasmine was one of his finest in years. Keaton, on the other hand, has not been acquitting herself quite as well; The Big Wedding was an embarrassment for everyone involved. There has to be more for a Talented Lady Of A Certain Age than Nancy Meyers-esque tripe. There just has to be.
Last Collaboration: Manhattan Murder Mystery (1993)
Steven Spielberg and Richard Dreyfuss: After a long dry spell, Dreyfuss is diving back in to the movie world with a vengeance. He’s got some intriguing projects on the horizon, including a buddy comedy of sorts with Tatiana Maslany of “Orphan Black” fame. But, uh, Jason Priestley is directing, and that does not exactly inspire a lot of confidence in me. Spielberg, on the other hand, is in constant danger of drowning in his own stultifying self-importance. Don’t get me wrong — I’m a Spielberg fan — but I would love to see a project that shakes up the twin sins of Too Saccharine and Too Ponderous. Dreyfuss’s dry wit might be just the thing.
Last Collaboration: Always (1989) … First person to call this Too Saccharine gets my fist in their face.
Sam Raimi and Bruce Campbell: Whoa whoa whoa, chicklets, calm your ruffled feathers. I know Raimi has been using Campbell in most of his recent flicks. But background roles and cameos don’t exactly count. The recent, fantastic Evil Dead remake kicked up a lot of Campbell/Raimi nostalgia for me, and it’s not a stretch to say that Raimi as a director has lost much of his mojo. Oh, what’s that, Oz the Great and Powerful fans? Shut it.
Last Collaboration: Army Of Darkness (1992)
Martin Scorsese and Robert DeNiro: No offense to Leo, Scorsese’s younger, blonder second wife, but there ain’t nothing like the real thing. These two are forever talking about reuniting and never following through. If you think DeNiro’s career doesn’t need a Scorsese-esque shot in the arm, I’d like to direct you to The Big Wedding discussion above under “Keaton, Diane.” I know I’m also in the minority in not having had my hair blown back by Silver Linings Playbook, but there we are.
Last Collaboration: Casino (1995)
David Lynch and Laura Dern: Their last collaboration wasn’t all that long ago, and in my opinion it was their finest. If anyone can wash the bad taste of “Enlightened” out of my mouth, it’s David Lynch. And, heck, if they want to wear matchy-matchy Gap khakis, who am I to object?
Last Collaboration: Inland Empire (2006)
Kurt Russell and John Carpenter: Seriously, what what what is John Carpenter doing with his life? Not that their last collaboration was any great shakes, but I would be insanely curious to see what these two could cook up nowadays.
Last Collaboration: Escape From L.A. (1996)