11 Things You Didn’t Know About The Nightmare Before Christmas

From the Disney Insider

The Nightmare Before Christmas is one of the best movies around, and if you disagree, you get a lump of coal for all your wintery holidays to come. Beyond possessing a delightfully whimsical story and impossibly catchy tunes, the film was a downright animation marvel—and as a result, the following trivia is so fascinating, it’s scary.

1. The Nightmare Before Christmas is based on a poem that Tim Burton wrote and illustrated. What a multi-talented man, that Tim Burton.

2. It took hundreds of thousands of individually-captured frames to make the film. That’s a lot of work and we’re grateful for all of it.


3. Model artists drew concepts, characters, and settings with their non-dominant hand to give the film an unsettling look. (Still looks way better than when we draw with our dominant hands.)


4. German Expressionism influenced the set and costume designs of the film. You have it to thank for all the whimsical cartoon-like shapes!


5. Danny Elfman’s music played a major role in shaping the story. As he explained, usually “you [start with] a finished script and then think of ways to plug the songs in. But Tim and I started with a skeleton of a story—no pun intended—and developed a tone through the songs. It was a very organic way of developing a musical.” (Was that pun really unintended? You decide.)


6. The skeletons at the core of the stop-motion characters are called “armatures.” (The skeleton at the core of this film is called “Jack Skellington.”)


7. Caroline Thompson, who wrote the film’s screenplay, has said that “…while Jack’s dilemma gives The Nightmare Before Christmas its plot, Sally’s gives it its heart.” Sally also gives everyone the best advice.


8. A series of replacement heads for Sally were designed to give her a full range of emotions. She has ten different faces, each with eleven unique expressions, and given the antics of everyone around her, it’s easy to see why she needs all of them.


9. Oogie Boogie is supposed to represent your worst Halloween nightmare—a sack full of bugs. Nailed it!


10. Santa’s naughty-or-nice list looks like regular paper, but it’s actually two very thin sheets of paper with aluminum foil in between to make it stay put while remaining flexible. Clever!


11. Tim Burton once said, “Although the title makes the film sound a little scary, I see The Nightmare Before Christmas as a positive story, without any truly bad characters. The characters are trying to do something good and just get a little mixed up.” We’re excepting Oogie Boogie from this, of course.


Time to show off and tell us your favorite piece of trivia from The Nightmare Before Christmas. Drop that knowledge in the comments below and educate your fellow fans!


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Michele Atwood is the Owner/Editor of The Main Street Mouse and it’s subsidiaries and author of the books “Moving to Main Street U.S.A.” “How Many Sleeps Till Disney?” and “How Many Sleeps Till Disneyland?” Michele also contributes Disney news to the Joe Kelley Morning Show on 107.3 WDBO in Orlando. She and her family made the move from Michigan to the Orlando area to pursue their Disney dreams. Michele is a life long Disney fan, and has two sons who have followed suit, each going on their first Disney trip before their first birthday’s. Part of the goal Michele has for The Main Street Mouse is not only to keep members informed, but to create somewhat of a Disney Family by relating to others through personal experiences and opinions. Also, Michele is making it a priority to share stories of inspiration and hope to other Disney Fans in an effort to share the Magic and hopefully make a difference in the lives of others. ~ I enjoy writing personal perspective blogs, doing TMSM Meet Ups for our readers, and keeping the constant interaction going with others, sharing the Disney Magic to people when they can’t be at their Happy Place.

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