Disney may be interested in The Nightmare Before Christmas sequel or live-action adaptation, but could a live-action take on this fan-favorite work? Disney has found success in recent years by taking movies from their animated classics vault and turning them into live-action blockbusters. Cinderella, Beauty and the Beast and The Jungle Book have each been adapted to live-action to incredible success, but in terms of reception and box office earnings. As a result, the studio has plenty more live-action adaptations in various stages of development. In fact, three are set to hit theaters in 2019: Dumbo, Aladdin and The Lion King (though there's been some debate if The Lion King can truly be considered live-action).
As for The Nightmare Before Christmas, the film celebrated its 25th anniversary last year, having been released in 1993. Tim Burton's stop-motion animated movie was well-received upon release and has become a favorite among many for its atypical take on the holiday season. The story follows Jack Skellington, the mayor of Halloween Town who grows bored of his holiday and one day discovers Christmas Town. Jack is enchanted by the holiday and decides Halloween Town will be responsible for Christmas that year - to disastrous results. As both a Halloween and Christmas movie, it's endured for more than 25 years - and it's even become interpreted as an allegory for cultural appropriation. Now, Disney may be looking for a way to return to Halloween Town.
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Moviehole is reporting that Disney is currently discussing potential ways to revisit The Nightmare Before Christmas property, either with a sequel or a possible live-action adaptation. However, this report should be taken with a major grain of salt as it's unclear how reputable the source is (though Moviehole notes it's their same source that offered up info on Backdraft 2). Even if the report is correct, discussing a potential project is the very earliest stage of making a film so it remains to be seen if anything will even come of it.
That said, Nightmare Before Christmas is a beloved property, and revisiting it would fall in line with Disney's new trend of taking its animated movies and adapting them to live-action. But the question remains: Would a live-action Nightmare Before Christmas even work? Undoubtedly, there's plenty that Hollywood can do with costumes and practical effects, but it seems unlikely a live-action Nightmare Before Christmas could truly capture the wild and creepy citizens of Halloween Town with makeup and costumes alone. After all, Jack is a skeleton who can take off his head and his friend Sally is a rag doll who unstitches herself to sneak out of Dr. Finklestein's lab.
As such, a live-action Nightmare Before Christmas might be better served going the route of The Lion King, using hyperrealistic CGI to bring the various characters and inhabitants of Halloween Town and Christmas Town to life. There are, of course, more human-like characters who could be brought to life with actors - like Santa Claus and the trick-or-treaters Lock, Shock and Barrel - so the possible live-action Nightmare Before Christmas movie could be a mix of practical effects and CGI, like Jon Favreau's The Jungle Book.
Of course as previously stated, it remains to be seen whether Disney does actually move forward with any kind of Nightmare Before Christmas sequel or live-action adaptation. For now, fans of Burton's beloved stop-motion film can discuss whether they'd like to see either a sequel or live-action movie. If Disney does decide to pursue a return to The Nightmare Before Christmas property, it may be able to arrive in time for the film's 30th anniversary in 2023.