Calling the filmmaker "intuitive", the actor said Burton was the best person to direct the live-action remake of Disney's 1941 animated classic.
"He really is so intuitive. Obviously, the story is imbued with an incredible sweetness there's this pervasive sweetness and sense of hope and playfulness to the whole thing. It could dip into the realm of being too sickly sweet, but Tim is constantly looking to pull it back. He has a high regard for the audience and doesn't want to beat them over the head with the sweetness of the film.
"Having said all that, he has designed these incredible worlds, and the sets I've been on daily are like nothing I've ever seen. They're so beautiful and so evocative, and if you have any sense of a child inside you, that's provoked as soon as you walk on set. Tim's incredibly engaged in the whole storytelling process. He's feeling and breathing and thinking his way through everything the characters are going through on-screen. He's just extraordinary to watch," Farrell said in a statement.
In the film, the actor plays Holt Farrier, a former circus star who finds his life turned upside down when he returns from World War I. He has lost his wife and his circus act, and struggles to connect with his two children, Milly and Joe.
He added he has been a fan of the director for 20 years after he watched "Edward Scissorhands".
"When I heard he was doing 'Dumbo', it seemed like such a beautiful marriage of magical, fantastical material and a director who's so renowned for his incredible imagination and artistic virtue. It was a no-brainer," the actor said.
The film marks the actor-director's first collaboration and Burton said Farrell instantly found the heart of the character.
"(Holt is) war-damaged, he's missing an arm, he used to be a star, he hasn't seen his kids and he doesn't really know how to talk to them. To try and do that subtly and emotionally takes a certain type of person, somebody who understands drama and comedy and emotion, all mixed together. It's a subtle part, and those are sometimes the hardest ones to do.
"Colin's great because he did it, he really understood the mixture of all of those things. Plus, he can ride a horse one-armed, and you can't say that about everybody. He was a real collaborator, and really fun to work with," the filmmaker said.
Farrell also talked about his horse riding abilities, adding "there's always a specific reason or scene that will demand a certain new skill set".
"I've been doing a little bit of roping on this film that I hadn't really ever done before, and that's been tricky. But I've had some great guys working with me. Rowley (Irlam), who's the stunt coordinator I worked with on 'Alexander', and Luis Miguel (Arranz), who's a Spanish horse trainer and rider, are kind of genius. So, it's been fun. It's a huge part of Holt's life, so it was fairly important that I at least seem to have a sense of comfort," he said.
Also starring Michael Keaton, Danny DeVito, Eva Green, and Alan Arkin, "Dumbo" is slated to be released in India on March 29.
(This story has not been edited by Business Standard staff and is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)