6 Frightfully Fantastic Facts about ‘The Nightmare Before Christmas’

6 Frightfully Fantastic Facts about 'The Nightmare Before Christmas' 1
Jack Skellington / The Nightmare Before Christmas

The Nightmare Before Christmas was a Halloween and Christmas favorite the moment it was released in 1993. Tim Burton, the producer, (not the director) has always been synonymous with all things spooky. In 1993, the same was true since he had quite a few hits under his belt, but this stop-motion masterpiece would catapult his fame to a different level. Let us not forget that the director of The Nightmare Before Christmas was Henry Selick – who would later go on to create amazing stop-motion features such as James and the Giant Peach (1996) and Coraline (2009). The combination of director, producer and, songwriter Danny Elfman – Nightmare was destined to be a smash hit.

If you’re looking for more facts on the beloved Halloween (or Christmas) tale, check out the ones listed below!

  1. It Began With a Poem
    • According to the Daily Beast who interviewed Selick in 2013, “Tim rewrote the classic poem, ‘Twas the Night Before Christmas ‘ along with designs for Jack Skellington, his dog, Zero, and Santa Claus.” At the time, Tim was working at Disney and even pitched the plan for the stop-motion classic but, unfortunately, it was passed on.
  2. A Clash of the Holidays
    • According to the commentary of the film, Tim Burton originally got the idea for the film whilst going to the store. The ending of Halloween eventually meeting with Christmas decorations planted an idea in Burtons’ head that was not soon to leave!
  3. NO MAGIC!
    • Halloweentown is delightfully gloomy and features some of our favorite monsters. A rule that Tim Burton put in place is that Halloweentown was not to have any magic. This is a fantastic note because when Jack introduces Christmas to his friends, Christmas becomes magic!
  4. Out of the Question
    • Waiting for a sequel of The Nightmare Before Christmas? Don’t hold your breath! Tim Burton is not eager for anyone to create any alternatives or sequels to his beloved film. According to an interview with MTV, “I was always very protective of [Nightmare Before Christmas], not to do sequels or things of that kind. You know, ‘Jack visits Thanksgiving world’ or other kinds of things, just because I felt the movie had a purity to it and the people that like it. Because it’s not a mass-market kind of thing, it was important to kind of keep that purity of it. I try to respect people and keep the purity of the project as much as possible.”.
  5. Get to Buggin’!
    • The commentary of The Nightmare Before Christmas has a lot of great information – for those that are looking to brush up on their favorite spooky film. In the commentary, we learn that if any of the crew had downtime, they were told to make worms for the hundreds of worms that would make up Oogie Boogie!
  6. No Quick Film
    • Nightmare took over 3 years to shoot. According to Selick in 2013, “I was on the film for three-and-a-half years. The stop-motion animation took about 18 months, but with pre-production, where you storyboarded every single shot, it did add up,”. These films may be time-consuming, but if done right, they turn into a masterpiece.

There are so many great fun facts about this film, and these are only 6. Make sure you check out the film’s DVD and Bluray Commentary. There are also great videos about the creation of the film. Let us know what your favorite facts are – and if we missed one you feel every fan should know!

Photos: Disney / Touchstone

6 Frightfully Fantastic Facts about 'The Nightmare Before Christmas' 2

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