So he was clearly a perfect fit to direct the adaptation of Ransom Riggs' bestseller Miss Peregrine's Home for Peculiar Children. "One of the things that I loved about the story is that I think a lot of us are deemed as weird or peculiar," Burton says. "The fact is, while all these kids have their peculiarities, if you didn't know what those peculiarities were, they'd just be viewed as normal kids. That's something I really felt close to, and it was an interesting dynamic in the story."

Tim Burton seen on the set of Miss Peregrine's Home for Peculiar ChildrenTim Burton seen on the set of Miss Peregrine's Home for Peculiar Children

Burton says that he fell in love with Riggs' book on first sight. "It was the first time I looked at a book and loved it before I read it, and that was because of the old photographs," he says. "There's something quite mysterious, haunting and poetic about old photographs. The way he constructed a story around these photographs was quite clever. That idea was inspiring, just on its own. It was an interesting kind of way to create a story. It made it feel like a weird old fable."

In the book, Miss Peregrine is an older woman, but Burton immediately thought of the 36-year-old Eva Green for the role. And she didn't hesitate about taking it on. "One of the best things about Tim is that when he picks an actor he gives you a lot of freedom," Green says. "He has total faith in you. It's a Burton film so you think, 'How far can I go?' You're not going to play too natural, you have to do something, an expressionist kind of thing, but still remain quite human."

And she liked Burton's take on Miss Peregrine. "When you see the photograph of Miss Peregrine in the book she's more beginning-of-the-century," she says. "With Tim, she's a bit of a sexy creature and it's in the 1940s, so she's a bit more cuckoo. Literally."

Green thinks her European sensibilities have given her career a "mysterious" spin that helped her identify with this role. "Maybe it's because I have dark hair," she laughs. "But it's true that I don't belong. I've always felt like this as a child, I feel like I'm floating, a tiny bit. I wish I could be more grounded. I don't know how to put it - it's shyness."

Watch the trailer for Miss Peregrine's Home for Peculiar Children: