Directed by:
Written by:
Tim Burton
Leonard Ripps (as Lenny Ripps)
Music by:
Michael Convertino
David Newman
Art direction:
Edited by:
Ernest Milano
Distributed by:
Buena Vista Pictures
Release date(s):
December 14, 1984
Running time:
29 min.
Gross revenue:
Frankenweenie was Tim Burton's second short film made while he was working as a Disney animator. Even though at the time Disney deemed the film too intense for children, Burton remade it.




The story begins with a young boy named Victor Frankenstein showing a home movie that he created with his dog Sparky and several puppets and props that recreated a scene involving dinosaurs and a caveman. As the film concludes his parents and friends congratulate him and Sparky on their wonderful performances. Victor then begins to play fetch with Sparky, but accidentally sends Sparky into the middle of the road and is incidentally run over. The next day at school Victor learns about electricity and the nervous system and (after witnessing his teacher demonstrate how to make a dead frog move by introducing electricity to it's body) decides to attempt to bring Sparky back to life. He goes to the cemetery where Sparky is buried, digs him up, and creates a large contraption on his roof which vaguely resembles the one from the movie Frankenstein meant to harness the power of lightening to charge his body and bring him back to life. Victor is successful and Sparky comes back as a zombie pup with all of his body parts reattached with sloppy stitching. Victor tries desperately to hide Sparky from his neighboors, but they eventually discover what he has done and form an angry mob determined to kill Spark. Sparky is scared off by the mob and Victor follows him. Sparky leads victor to an old abandoned miniature golf course and hides inside of a small windmill. One of the men in the angry mob lights the inside of the mill with a lighter and begins to look inside to see if he can find a way to get Victor and Sparky out, but accidentally sets the mill ablaze. A plank falls out from under Victor causing him to fall and pass out from a head injury. Sparky quickly bites down on Victor's shirt and pulls him from the fire, but a burning piece of wood falls onto Sparky causing him to die. The angry mob realizes that Sparky is a true hero and not a monster. They then takes his lifeless body and attach jumper cables to him and their cars to bring him back to life.
  Burton films

Pee-wee's Big Adventure · Beetlejuice · Batman · Edward Scissorhands · Batman Returns · Ed Wood · Mars Attacks! · Sleepy Hollow · Planet of the Apes · Big Fish · Charlie and the Chocolate Factory · Corpse Bride · Sweeney Todd: The Demon Barber of Fleet Street · Alice in Wonderland · Dark Shadows · Frankenweenie · Big Eyes · Miss Peregrine's Home for Peculiar Children · Beetlejuice Returns


The Island of Doctor Agor · Doctor of Doom · Stalk of the Celery Monster · Luau · Vincent · Hansel and Gretel · Frankenweenie · Aladdin and His Wonderful Lamp · The Jar · Conversations with Vincent · The World of Stainboy · Kung Fu · Mannequin · Bones · Here With Me