Film history is filled with directors who like to occasionally step in front of the camera to make cameos in their own moves - from Alfred Hitchcock to Quentin Tarantino. Tim Burton, however, has never been one of these directors. As such, it will probably surprise a few cinefiles to learn that the filmmaker does make a very quick appearance in his latest, Miss Peregrine's Home For Peculiar Children. Certainly the rarity of the moment makes this a funny little bit of trivia by itself - but what makes the cameo particularly weird and interesting is the fact that Burton did it not because he wanted to, but because he had to.
In Miss Peregrine's Home For Peculiar Children, eagle-eyed viewers will notice that Tim Burton appears on-screen for a split second during the film's boardwalk-set finale, so when I recently had the chance to sit down with the director during the movie's press day, I took the opportunity to ask him about it. Burton explained that he didn't have much of a choice in the matter, because the production was not only short on budget, but didn't have a crew available and didn't even have official permission to shoot in the location:
This one was out of necessity, because what happened was... this happened at the end. We had no money; we had no crew; we had no permits, so just a few of us snuck on to a couple of rides. [We] got kicked of the pier a few times. So it wasn't out of vanity, it was more out of necessity.
Following up, I decided to ask Tim Burton why he has never really cameoed in his movies before (the exception being Pee-wee's Big Adventure), and his answer was as straight forward and understandable as it gets:
I don't like looking at myself! That's one reason.
You can watch Tim Burton talk about his Miss Peregrine's Home For Peculiar Children cameo and light-rebel filmmaking adventure in video below:
If you haven't seen Miss Peregrine's Home For Peculiar Children yet, be sure to be on the lookout for Tim Burton's quick appearance -- and if you've seen the film, hit the comments below to tell us whether or not you spotted the director! You can see the movie in theaters now, and be sure to stay tuned for more from our interviews with the cast and filmmakers!