What's this? What's this? There's illustrations everywhere! What's this? A sequel's in the air! After nearly 25 years, fans of the classic animated film The Nightmare Before Christmas are finally getting a continuation of Jack Skellington's story, but there's a catch: it won't be a movie. Instead, The Nightmare Before Christmas will return in comic book form.
Directed by Henry Selick and produced by Tim Burton - whose name on all the marketing has led many to assume he in fact was the director (he had to pass on the job due to his commitment to Batman Returns at the time) - The Nightmare Before Christmas hit theaters back in 1993, earning a healthy $76 million on a reported $18 million budget. More importantly though, the macabre yet delightful stop-motion effort has gone to amass a legion of fans, be absorbed into the larger Disney universe, and become a cherished Christmas and/or Halloween classic for those who grew up watching it.
THR reports that Tokyopop is set to release the sequel series, titled Nightmare Before Christmas: Zero's Journey, which will follow Jack's dog as he gets lost within and then presumably tries to find his way out of Christmas Town. DJ Milky will write the comics, while art will be provided by Studio DICE. This follows Tokyopop's previous comic adaptation of the film (see the cover art below), which hit shelves last fall. Zero's Journey is looking to launch in spring 2018, although the exact number of issues it will run has yet to be revealed.
While Zero's Journey doesn't exactly sound like the full-on sequel story that some fans may have wanted, it's still the first officially licensed comic expansion of the original film's plot, and will presumably treat fans to never before seen colorful encounters involving their favorite characters. Jack will also likely be around, since it's centered on his dog after all.
With the enduring love that so many have for The Nightmare Before Christmas, one wonders when or if Burton and Disney will pull the trigger on an actual follow-up film. It may very well never happen, but if it did, the box office would likely be amazing. Who knows, maybe if this comic does well enough, somebody might take notice and decide to revive the franchise. Stranger things have happened.
Nightmare Before Christmas: Zero's Journey debuts spring 2018.