The Nightmare Before Christmas | director Henry Selick ponders follow-up talk

The Nightmare Before Christmas
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Plans for another The Nightmare Before Christmas film would have to get past Tim Burton, and it doesn’t sound like he’s budging.

Forgive the plug, but one of the many features in the latest, 168-page issue of Film Stories magazine examines how 1993’s The Nightmare Before Christmas became such a phenomenon. Dreamed up by Tim Burton, whose name adorns the title, but directed by Henry Selick, the movie’s original release proved to be a modest success. What nobody could have foreseen is that, 30 years later, the movie would have generated a merchandising arm whose revenue is measured in billions.

Given that Disney has the rights to The Nightmare Before Christmas, and given that Disney has made a business out of cannibalising its previous successes, it does beg the question: has there been any temptation to make a follow-up movie?

Henry Selick has been considering the idea of a prequel in a new interview with People.

Admitting that he’d be happy to work with Tim Burton again, Selick added that the making of the film was – unsurprisingly – hard work, and going back to that kind of level for a follow-up isn’t of massive appeal. “I think Tim in particular feels like, why mess with that,” Selick added.

Podcast | Tim Burton’s The Nightmare Before Christmas (1993) and Final Destination (2000)

It does suggest that somewhere along the line, the discussion has been had, but Selick note that, “so far, nobody’s come up with a great idea for  a sequel. And I still think that Tim gets to decide. I don’t think there’s any idea that would convince him.”

Rather than a sequel, the one thing that mildly intrigues Selick is the idea of a prequel. “There might be an interesting story there about how Jack became the King of Halloweentown”, he said. And Chris Sarandon, who voiced Jack Skellington in the film? Well, he says if there was another movie, “I’d be there in a minute.”

Disney now fully embraces The Nightmare Before Christmas, having previously not put its name on it, and released it under the Touchstone Pictures banner. Most recently, a 4K UHD disc release of the film has appeared, which you can find here.

As for a follow-up or prequel? It just seems that, amongst Selick and Burton, there’s not a lot of appetite for it.

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