John Logan ("The Aviator," "Gladiator") penned the screenplay adaptation planned to begin work early in 2007 for a "late 2007 release," according to the announcement. Walter Parkes and Laurie MacDonald will partner with Richard Zanuck and John Logan to produce the co-production with Warner Bros. Paramount will distribute for DreamWorks domestically and Warner Bros. internationally. Sweeney Todd follows the story of a wrongfully imprisoned barber in Victorian England who sets out to seek revenge on the judge who imprisoned him. The stage work featuring a score by Sondheim and a book by Hugh Wheeler based on the play by Christopher Bond.
The original 1979 Broadway production starred Len Cariou as the barbarous barber with Angela Lansbury as his pie-making cohort in the Harold Prince-directed work. Both stars and the musical itself earned Tony Awards. In the current Broadway run, re-imagined by director John Doyle and starring Michael Cerveris and Patti LuPone, the actors play their own instruments. Other incarnations of the work include a 1989 Broadway revival featuring Bob Gunton and Beth Fowler, a Kennedy Center run as part of a Sondheim Celebration with Brian Stokes Mitchell and Christine Baranski as well as a 2001 concert presentation, directed by Lonny Price and led by George Hearn and LuPone.
The film will reunite Depp with Burton once again — the duo have previously worked together on "Edward Scissorhands," "Ed Wood," "Sleepy Hollow," "Corpse Bride" and "Charlie and the Chocolate Factory."