I was given an exclusive peak at the first footage from Tim Burton's upcoming film version of Stephen Sondheim's Sweeney Todd, which will be released next year. Johnny Depp was presenting a clearly delighted Burton with Venice's career Golden Lion, incredibly the director's first ever award from a major film festival. Depp said: 'Tim is my favourite director. I feel very lucky to have been included in his life and in his world of cinema. He's a true original and a true auteur, a rare breed in today's cinema.' The exclusive clip was then shown. It featured Depp's Todd duetting with Helena Bonham Carter's panda-eyed Mrs Lovett. Both were doing their own singing, and most impressively, as they powered through a dark ode to a cut-throat razor. In the brief dialogue, it seemed that Depp might just have finally got a decent cockney accent, and he held the gleaming object up like Edward reunited with his Scissorhands.
At the end, the camera flew out of the window to reveal Mrs Lovett's pie shop and an intricate, beautiful shot over the sky line of Dickensian London. This awesome set has been designed, at Pinewood, by the legendary Cinecitta team of Dante Ferretti and Francesca Lo Schiavo.