Calling all “The Nightmare Before Christmas” fans! Did you know that it is the 30-year anniversary of the eerily enchanting film? Now fans can discover the inspiration behind Tim Burton’s The Nightmare Before Christmas by reading a new book that is filled to the brim with fun facts about the Pumpkin King of Halloween Town, Sally, Oogie Boogie and more!
The book, “DISNEY TIM BURTON’S THE NIGHTMARE BEFORE CHRISTMAS: Beyond Halloween Town – The Story, the Characters, and the Legacy” celebrates the film and the culture that has grown around it, with an original foreword by Tim Burton. Additionally, it contains exclusive and original interviews from:
- Author and creator, Tim Burton
- Animators, sculptors, and other artists of the film
- Musical talent behind Jack Skellington, Danny Elfman
- The iconic voice of Sally, comic actress Catherine O’Hara
- Musicians on the “Nightmare Revisited” album
I remember introducing my daughter to “The Nightmare Before Christmas” when she was in grade school. She loved the movie and was obsessed with Zero, Jack Skellington’s ghost dog. One year, our family went to the Hollywood Bowl to listen to the score performed live by an orchestra and choir while the movie played out on the big screen. Danny Elfman (composer, voice actor for Jack Skellington and lead singer of Oingo Boingo) was at the concert and much to my surprise, he ended the event with a rousing performance of “Dead Man’s Party.”
I received a copy of “Beyond Halloween Town: The Story, the Characters, and the Legacy” for review purposes. Both my daughter and I were eager to look through it. It’s chock-full of anecdotes and photos that is sure to delight die-hard and casual fans alike!
About the Author
Emily Zemler is a writer and journalist based in London. She is a frequent contributor to the Los Angeles Times and Rolling Stone, among other prestigious outlets. Emily is the co-author of A Sick Life, with TLC’s Tionne “T-Boz” Watkins, and the author of The Art and Making of Aladdin and Disney Princess: Beyond the Tiara.
Recently I had the opportunity to interview Emily to find out what inspired her to write the book, who is her favorite character from the movie and whether she is going on a book tour in Southern California.
What inspired you to write this book?
Emily: I previously wrote Disney Princess: Beyond the Tiara, a book that examines the cultural history and legacy of the Disney Princess. After I wrote that, my publisher Delia Greve had the idea that we could continue the “Beyond” series with a book about Tim Burton’s The Nightmare Before Christmas to coincide with the film’s 30th anniversary. I thought it was a great idea, especially since fans have really embraced the movie and its characters as their own. I am a huge Tim Burton fan and I loved Nightmare when I was growing up, so it felt like a great fit for me as a writer.
Do you have a favorite character from “Disney Tim Burton’s The Nightmare Before Christmas”?
Emily: While I love all the characters in the film, my favorite is Zero. He’s so adorable and loyal and has a great spirit. It’s such a clever idea to take inspiration from a holiday classic like Rudolph and give Zero a glowing pumpkin nose. When you learn about how the filmmakers created Zero he becomes even cooler. It wasn’t surprising to discover that Zero was also inspired by Tim Burton’s own dogs.
The book is so extensive with photos and references. How long did it take you to research and write the book?
Emily: Due to our publishing schedule, I had about two months to write and research, which is not a long time! I spent a lot of that doing all of the interviews you see in the book, as well as looking through other sources like documentaries, past books, and magazine articles. I spent a lot of time on Instagram looking at how fans have responded to and reinterpreted the film in their own ways. Some of that appears in the book. I was also involved in the photo selection process. I had the help of an amazing photo researcher, Julie Alissi, who worked with me on the Disney Princess book. Books like this are a lot of work, but it’s worth it when you see the finished version on your bookshelf.
Will you be going on a book tour?
Emily: Unfortunately there is not a book tour in the works. I live in London, so I think it would be outside the scope of my publisher’s marketing budget to send me to Southern California. But I’m very appreciative of any interest in the book and I encourage people to tag me on social media when they share pictures of themselves with it.
Thank you, Epic Ink, for sending me this book! This is going to be proudly displayed on our coffee table, just as soon as I can pry it out of my daughter’s hands. 😉
“DISNEY TIM BURTON’S THE NIGHTMARE BEFORE CHRISTMAS: Beyond Halloween Town – The Story, the Characters, and the Legacy” will be available August 22, 2023 and can be found wherever books are sold. You can pre-order it on Amazon here.
Disclosure: No monetary compensation was received for this post. I received a complimentary book which helped facilitate this review. All images are my own unless otherwise noted. The images shown in this post are used with permission. As always, my opinions are 100% my own.