‘The Nightmare Before Christmas’ director thinks Tim Burton shouldn’t have his name on the film

"It was really me and my team of people who brought that to life"

The Nightmare Before Christmas director Henry Selick has suggested that Tim Burton shouldn’t receive the majority of credit for the 1993 animated film.

In a recent interview with The A.V. Club, Selick made it clear that he and his team were responsible for developing the spooky festive classic, despite the fact that Burton’s name features in the title.

“That was a little unfair because it wasn’t called Tim Burton’s Nightmare until three weeks before the film came out,” said Selick. “And I would have been fine with that, if that’s what I signed up for.


“But Tim was in L.A. making two features while I directed that film, and I mean, Tim is a genius – or he certainly was in his most creative years. I always thought his story was perfect, and he designed the main characters. But it was really me and my team of people who brought that to life.”

‘The Nightmare Before Christmas’. CREDIT: Alamy

Selick went on to suggest that he wasn’t the only creator seeking credit for the film. “Now, of course, if you ask Danny Elfman, well, that’s his movie,” he continued, noting that the composer and voice of main character Jack Skellington saw the project in a completely different light.

“When we finished the film, it was so funny because he came up to me and shook my hand. ‘Henry, you’ve done a wonderful job illustrating my songs!’ And he was serious, and I loved it!”

Elsewhere, Burton recently spoke out against Disney, describing the company as a “horrible big circus”.

Discussing the failure of his 2019 adaptation of Dumbo, Burton said: “I think my days with Disney are done. I realised that I was Dumbo, that I was working in this horrible big circus and I needed to escape.”