Alabama Town Featured On Hgtv Honors 'BIg Fish' Director

WETUMPKA, Ala. (AP) — An Alabama town known for its connection to the 2003 movie “Big Fish” is wrapping up a days-long celebration honoring the film's director, Tim Burton.

A screening of the fantasy flick will be held Saturday in Wetumpka, where the movie starring Ewan McGregor, Albert Finney, Helena Bonham and Jessica Lange was filmed. Festivities began with a cake marking Burton's 63rd birthday, and there also have been trivia and character tie-ins in the town.

Burton's decision to film “Big Fish” in the Elmore County city has been credited with a resurgence that included Wetumpka being featured in the HGTV show “Home Town Takeover.” The publicity has helped bring new life and tourists to the town of 8,200 people, which sits along the Coosa River north of Montgomery.

“Big Fish” tells the story of a man's quest to sort out the fact and fiction of stories told by his father. Wetumpka was the setting for the town of Ashton. The movie also was filmed in part at Jackson Lake Island in Millbrook, where part of the set created for the fictional town of Spectre still stands.

Burton has directed or produced nearly 70 films including “Batman,” “Batman Forever,” “Edward Scissorhands” and “Beetlejuice.”