Tim Burton was an animator for Disney before being hired by Paul Reubens to direct Pee-wee's Big Adventure (1985). The film was a quirky hit, and Burton went on to make the even quirkier hit Beetlejuice (1988, with Winona Ryder) and the blockbuster Batman (1989, with Michael Keaton in the title role). The success of the Batman series (Burton also directed Batman Returns in 1992), and the popularity of his distinctively gruesome humor, made Burton one of the hottest Hollywood directors of the 1990s. Since then he's made stop-animation and live action films with a distinctive look, many starring Johnny Depp. His animated features include The Nightmare Before Christmas (1993), James and the Giant Peach (1996, based on a story by Roald Dahl) and the Oscar-nominated features The Corpse Bride (2005) and Frankenweenie (2012). His films with Depp include Edward Scissorhands (1990, with Alan Arkin), Ed Wood (1994, with Sarah Jessica Parker), Sleepy Hollow (1999, with Christina Ricci), Charlie and the Chocolate Factory (2005, with Depp as Willy Wonka), Sweeney Todd: The Demon Barber of Fleet Street (2007, with Sacha Baron Cohen), Alice in Wonderland (2010) and Dark Shadows (2012). Burton's other films include Mars Attacks! (1996, with Jack Nicholson), the 2001 remake of the sci-fi classic Planet of the Apes (starring Mark Wahlberg) and the 2004 film Big Fish (starring Ewan McGregor).
Burton has two children with Helena Bonham Carter, who has acted in several of his films. The children are Billy Ray Burton (born 4 October 2003) and Nell Burton (born 15 December 2007).