'Dumbo' is story that celebrates inclusion, Colin Farrell says

LOS ANGELES (KABC) -- In director Tim Burton's take on the classic tale, "Dumbo," a big-eared baby elephant may be the answer to help save a struggling circus. Colin Farrell plays a fellow circus performer. He's a widower, and his two kids love Dumbo. But, like the original Disney animated version, this one takes a troubling turn.

"It's the story of a child removed against the child's will--and against the mother's will--from his mother. And not to get too political about it but it's heartbreaking," said Farrell. "And they really did an extraordinary job at bringing this little thing to life. I mean, they really did. I thought it was-- it was phenomenal what they did. I think this film, at its core, is a film about inclusion. It's a film that celebrates difference. It's a film that looks at the trials of the outsider. And the outsider doesn't exist unless somebody says it's the outsider."

But Farrell warns there are dark themes as well.

"There's greed in there. There's cruelty in there but goodness and decency prevails and I think that's a lovely message," said Farrell. "I don't think it ever gets old."

In the film, Dumbo winds up working under a much bigger big top than the traveling circus. And as beautiful and magical as it may look, it's not.

"I think it has such a gorgeous heart," said Farrell. "There's a sweetness that wins out in the end. So I think the message is worth the journey to get there, you know?"

"Dumbo" is rated PG. It's new to theaters March 29.
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