The Nightmare Before Christmas

A GHOULISH TALE WITH WICKED HUMOR & STUNNING ANIMATION.

nightmarebeforechristmasJack Skellington, Pumpkin King of Halloween Town, discovers a portal to Christmas Town and tries to introduce this new holiday to his people… who misunderstand completely. Ten years after originating as a project for Tim Burton when he was working for Disney, this charming and ghoulish fantasy became director Henry Selick’s first feature film, and it is true to Burton’s style. The dark but colorful stop-motion animation renders the film a somewhat twitchy look that suits its themes perfectly. The visual feast in the clash between Halloween and Christmas is almost a little too over-the-top, but fun. Well cast; engaging musical tunes.

1993-U.S. Animated. 75 min. Color. Produced by Tim Burton. Directed by Henry Selick. Screenplay: Caroline Thompson. Music, Songs: Danny Elfman (“What’s This?”). Voices of Danny Elfman (Jack Skellington, singing voice), Chris Sarandon (Jack Skellington, speaking voice), Catherine O’Hara (Sally/Shock), William Hickey, Glenn Shadix, Paul Reubens.

Trivia: Rereleased in 3D in 2006. Vincent Price was originally cast as Santa Claus.

Last word: “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. At its peak, it was about 120 people working on it, and we had between 12-17 animators on the job. It’s an insane way to make a movie, but a lot of fun. It’s joy, along with a lot of pain.” (Selick, The Daily Beast)

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