So as its the month of Halloween, I have to write about Nightmare Before Christmas! It’s the only “Christmas” film I can watch any time of the year, without being judged! I’ve already watched it this month, and will probably watch it on Halloween too. From now until Christmas you can find Jack Skellington in the supermarkets, The Disney Store, and of course Primark, as well as other retailers. The story, songs and characters have now become part of my family’s home, especially at this time of year. And I know my family is not the only one out there who includes Jack and Sally in their Halloween and Christmas décor.
It was first released in the US on October 29th. We didn’t go to the cinema to see it, my sister was only 4, so we waited till it was available to rent. God video rentals were our weekend tradition! Anyway, I don’t know how many times we watched the video during the 2 days we hired it. Me, my sister and my mum were watching something we had never seen before, and we loved it!
Now I know it wasn’t the first stop motion animated film that was made. Us Brits are proud to have Wallace & Gromit. Nightmare Before Christmas was a Tim Burton stop motion animated musical. It tells the story of Jack Skellington, a being from “Halloween Town” who opens a portal to “Christmas Town”, afterwards deciding to celebrate the holiday, with some dastardly and comical consequences. The music to the film was written by Danny Elfman, who also provides Jacks singing voice to the film. Elfman has a very distinct sound, which after years of hearing his music, I can now tell if a theme song or score has been created by him. For example, did you know he wrote the theme tune to Desperate Housewives?! And like Steven Spielberg has mostly had John Williams score his films, Tim Burton mostly has Danny Elfman write part or all of the score to his films. And everyone’s favourite song from Night Before Christmas is of course, “What’s This?”. It can be a bit of a tongue twister to sing, but it definitely is catchy.
The Nightmare Before Christmas was originally a poem, written by Tim Burton in 1982, back when he used to work as an animator for Disney. He was an uncredited animator on Fox and the Hound! Tim Burton has since said, the idea for the poem was inspired after seeing a Halloween window display being taken down and replace with a Christmas one. The film went through different processes for many years, but production began in July 1991 in San Francisco. It took around 100 people over three years to complete this film. For one second of film, up-to 12 stop motion moves had to be made.
Disney released the film through Touchstone Pictures banner, as they felt the film was too dark for kids. It was a critical and financial success. And its been re-released in digital 3D, and became the first stop motion feature to be completely converted into 3D. I’ve not seen in 3D yet, but it is on my “3D Blu-Rays to get” list, not that we have a 3D TV. I don’t think ive ever used 3D as much as i just did then. Anway, since first seeing the film it has become a family favourite, but I have grown to love how artistically beautiful the film and characters are. This film is so special to me that I’m doing two posts on it. So look out for part two…
“Just because I cannot see it, doesn’t mean I can’t believe it” – Jack Skellington
Originally posted OCT 23RD 2015 on previous website