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20 Crazy Facts About The Making Of "The Nightmare Before Christmas"

In honor of the movie's 20th anniversary.

1. The stop-motion musical had 24 frames to a second, meaning they had to pose characters 24 times for each second of the completed film.

They had to move a character, take a picture, move the character, take a picture, and so on.

2. That consisted of roughly 110,000 frames.

3. One minute of the movie required an entire week of filming.

4. And the movie therefore took more than three years to complete.

Walt Disney Pictures / Via

5. There are as many as 60 individual characters, with three or four duplicates each.

6. Each puppet had an armature inside it, enabling flexible movement.

7. The sculpture department consisted of only four people.

And they did all those characters.

8. More than 400 distinctly different Jack Skellington heads were used.

9. And Sally had a mask for every expression change.

They couldn't give her different heads because of her long red hair, which is why they created the masks.

10. To make Jack blink, replacement series were wedged into his eyes, which took up three frames per blink.

11. Set designer Gregg Olsson built a quarter-scale mock-up of Halloween Town as a model for the real set.

Parts of the set also broke off into smaller pieces because the real-size set wouldn't all fit in one space.

12. The set also had trapdoors so animators could pop up and do the animation from beneath.

13. Although the sets were built in miniature, they were lit as if they were full-size movie sets.

They just used smaller lighting instruments.

14. Many of the sets required as many as 20-30 lights to create dramatic effects.

15. If there was ever a problem with a frame, they would have to go back and re-photograph the entire thing.

16. Composer and lyricist Danny Elfman didn't have a script to write the songs from.

Walt Disney Pictures / Via

He asked Tim Burton to describe a scene and then Elfman would compose the song.

17. The entire production required 13 animators.

18. It also included over 100 specially trained camera operators, puppet makers, set builders, and prop makers.

19. There was a total of eight camera crews.

Walt Disney Pictures / Via

20. And 19 sound stages with 230 sets total.

Basically, the talent and dedication required for this movie is severely underrated.

Walt Disney Pictures / Via

You can watch the full video on the making of The Nightmare Before Christmas here.

View this video on YouTube