In the movie, Beetlejuice talks about getting the Maitland's business, yet we never hear what he wanted from them

What did he expect for compensation?

  • 1
    They never strike a deal, so we don't learn what he wanted from them.
    – Tim
    Mar 5, 2018 at 2:34
  • @Tim He does strike a deal with Lydia. Perhaps he wanted to make the Maitlands beholden to him to later leverage that. Mar 7, 2018 at 0:42
  • @ToddWilcox The question is explicitly about the Maitlands. They never strike a deal with Betelgeuse. His deal with Lydia is separate.
    – Tim
    Mar 7, 2018 at 0:51

2 Answers 2


We don't know.

While the Maitlands do wall upon Betelgeuse, they never reach an agreement.

Beetle Juice looks offended.

              Me, scary?  You be the judge.


    He swirls his face and shoulders into a horrifying
    image.  Pleased, he laughs at himself.

              Honey.  Let's go.

              Go?  What d'ya mean?  We need

              No, we don't.  We can work
              something out ourselves.  We just
              have to try harder.

              Hold on.  Let's not be squeamish,
              missy.  You rang my bell, you
              gotta lick the pump.  I'm rolling!


    grabs Adam.  Betelgeuse is getting mad.  Not pretty.

              Folks, be reasonable here.  I'm at
              your service.  You be the judge.
              I'm a harmless guy.  Try me.

              Home.  Home.  Home!


    They are gone.  Betelgeuse is furious.

              You fresh corpse creeps!  Who do
              you think you are?... Walking
              away from a professional?


Essentially, the Maitlands are put off by Betelgeuse's manners and approach, hes self-advertising, and decide not to use his services.

Because of this, no contract is made, no agreement reached. We never learn what he would have requested in payment.

  • 1
    Note the dialog in the finished film for this scene is different. Mar 6, 2018 at 8:42
  • 1
    @ToddWilcox But not so different that it changes the outcome.
    – Tim
    Mar 6, 2018 at 18:50

Later on in the movie we learn that if he gets married, he will no longer be stuck in either afterlife or the kind of limbo or purgatory they are in (it’s not clear). See this clip:

This is why he tries to marry Lydia. So it’s possible that his “business” as a “bio-exorcist” is part of his machinations to give him enough power in the real world to get married. It almost works.

  • Do you have anything concrete, or is this pure speculation?
    – Gnemlock
    Mar 7, 2018 at 0:15
  • 1
    @Gnemlock Do you mean the part about him needing to get married? It’s in the movie. The “it’s possible” part is supposition based on the events of the movie. He cajoles the Maitlands into summoning him. Then when they get in trouble he leverages their situation into extorting Lydia for her agreement to marry him. So maybe that was his plan all along. Mar 7, 2018 at 0:36

You must log in to answer this question.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged .