In all honesty (and I love him so don't get me wrong) but Burton has lost his edge of late. I went to see Alice because it was his film and I adored some of the actors featured. Still really enjoyed the film but it just didn't feel like a Burton outing, especially the opening. Burton has a unique style that appears in all his films and Alice just didn't have that effect.
I think if he directed Maleificent it would have to herald back to the way he designed Nightmare, Corpse Bride and Edward Scissorhands with that amazing gothic look and feel. But I really think, especially after Sweeney Todd where Burton revealed his limitations when its comes to genre, another director is needed and Burton needs to reassess his filmic techniques.
Getting the director from Black Swan would be incredible!!!! I adore that movie, not just because it was intriguing, beautiful and uniquely terrifying but because his direction was top notch. The characters were all so engaging and real and he really threw himself into the genre.
I am actually more excited for this film now that he might be involved and I think its because there is a chance I can see more of his work on screen in similar style to Black Swan. A movie about a witches turn to ultimate evil- sounds like a pretty complex mental journey to me and that is what he excels at
Also I'm having weird visuals of Natalie Portman as Aurora's mother in her youth (since this is a prequel after all she may need to have more then just one line in this movie). lol