From 'Big Eyes' to 'Mr. Turner': A look back at artist biopics

Whether traditional or radical in style, the artist biopic usually comes with an air of cinematic prestige. This awards season, moviegoers and awards voters have two ambitious but very different examples of the genre to ponder.

"Mr. Turner" is filmmaker Mike Leigh's in-depth exploration of the last 25 years of the life of artist J.M.W. Turner, and "Big Eyes," the new film by Tim Burton, delves into the life of painter Margaret Keane.

Both movies are to open in the U.S. in December and have already played at festivals. "Mr. Turner," which earned Timothy Spall a best actor award at the Cannes Film Festival, takes a panoramic view of the artist's later years, moving back and forth between his work and private life. 

"Big Eyes" focuses on Keane's relationship with her husband, Walter, who claimed responsibility for her paintings. The movie, starring Amy Adams and Christoph Waltz, is Burton's first biopic since 1994's "Ed Wood."

The photo gallery above provides a look back at some notable films that have taken their inspiration from the lives of visual artists.

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