1. The film is based on a poem Tim Burton wrote in 1982 while working as an animator for Disney.
2. Disney considered developing The Nightmare Before Christmas in 1982 as either a short film or 30-minute TV special. The studio eventually shelved it for being “too weird.”
Disney decided to produce the movie after the success of Burton’s films Beetlejuice and Batman.
Source: Los Angeles Times
4. Burton did NOT direct the movie due to the film’s time commitment and his scheduling conflicts with Batman Returns.
Burton hired his friend, Henry Selick, to direct — this was also his feature film directing debut. He went on to direct two other classic stop-motion films, Coraline and James and the Giant Peach.
5. The film used over 230 sets that were set up in 19 soundstages.
8. Burton’s friend and composer Danny Elfman wrote the songs and music for the film without a script or storyboard.
According to Elfman, Burton would just describe the scenes to him.
9. Elfman also provided the singing voice for Jack after it was discovered that Chris Sarandon, Jack’s speaking voice, could not sing.
12. Patrick Stewart was the film’s original narrator, but was cut at the last minute for unclear reasons. He does, however, appear as the narrator on the film’s soundtrack.
17. Jack makes a cameo as a pirate skeleton in James and the Giant Peach.
Bonus: Patrick Stewart reading The Nightmare Before Christmas poem part 1:
Patrick Stewart reading The Nightmare Before Christmas poem part 2:
Facts come via The Making of Tim Burton’s The Nightmare Before Christmas, unless otherwise stated.
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