For students Tawney Schreier and Nevedha Duraimurugan, starting Team Burton, a club devoted to the films of Tim Burton, seemed like a great way to share their passion for the ominous beauty that Burton’s aesthetic has created over the span of almost four decades.
Starting a fan organization for Burton may appear to be an esoteric endeavor, but for the club’s members, it’s more than just watching his films.
“Burton’s work goes beyond just the movies,” said Schreier, a senior majoring in biomedical science. “He has also done poems and fine arts, which makes it a more interesting experience when we get together.”
Of course, the films are still the central reason for their organization.
Duraimurugan, a junior majoring in psychology and the president of Team Burton, said the films ignite something inside her when she watches them.
“There is just something about his films that inspires people,” she said.
Burton is known for his strange, dark and colorful work and distinct style that tends to celebrate that which is different and life’s many oddities.
Schreier and Duraimurugan do not hesitate to choose their favorite film from the master of gothic utopias, though they do disagree on who is right. Schreier said she prefers 2010’s live action “Alice in Wonderland,” while Duraimurugan said her favorite is the 1993 cult classic “The Nightmare Before Christmas.”
“The writing concepts are just great,” Duraimurugan said.
The club is also a great way for new Burton fans who wish to gain a greater appreciation of the artist’s work.
“It’s a niche community to find,” Schreier said. “But as long as you have a general appreciation for his work, then anyone can join.”
At its first meeting, two weeks ago, the club hosted a screening of Burton’s adaptation of the musical “Sweeney Todd.” For each of the club’s screenings, refreshments tend to be related to the movie that is being screened. In this case, pies were served, a favorite of Sweeney Todd’s that play a pivotal role in the film.
Team Burton also strives to be more active and reach beyond the boundaries of campus. The club plans to make chocolates for Shriners Hospitals around the time for the screening of Burton’s remake of Roald Dahl’s 1964 classic book “Charlie and the Chocolate Factory.”
The club will screen “Charlie and the Chocolate Factory” on Oct. 7. Team Burton meets every Tuesday and Thursday in the Marshall Student Center.
The Oracle’s Top Five Tim Burton Movies
1. “The Nightmare Before Christmas” (1993)
2. “Edward Scissorhands” (1990)
3. “Ed Wood” (1994)
4. “Big Fish” (2003)
5. “Sweeney Todd: The Demon Barber of Fleet Street” (2007)