Why Henry Selick’s Movie Is A Nightmare Before Christmas 2

Netflix’s Henry Selick Wendell and Wild seemed like a much better proposition than The Nightmare Before Christmas 2 would have. Streaming giant Netflix released a clip of Wendell and Wild on February 3, 2022, through its slick 2022 movie preview video, which is set to see typical demons (in turn). (voiced by Keegan-Michael Key and Jordan Peele) escape hell while being hunted by their demon hunter sister Nelly. While the preview is brief, the clip allows audiences to see director Henry Selick’s dazzling vision ahead of its Netflix release in 2022.

Selick is no stranger to quality stop-motion world building, with the American-born director having directed both James, Giant Peach and Coraline in recent years. Selick also directed the critically acclaimed 1993 Tim Burton film The Nightmare Before Christmas in his second feature film at the time. Nightmare Before Christmas’ popularity and impeccable cast has continued to resonate with sequels for many years after its release that persists in contemporary culture.

However, despite the urge to see The Nightmare Before Christmas 2 as a movie, Henry Selick’s Wendell and Wild was the dominant choice for many actors. The ending to The Nightmare Before Christmas feels a lot like a book being closed, meaning that any sequel Burton and Selick devised could feel headsets in comparison. In contrast, Wendell and Wild give Selick the opportunity to create his own world by being bound back to Burton’s vision some 26 years after the pair’s last collaboration – with Wendell and Wild looking extraordinary.

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While The Nightmare Before Christmas remains a beloved timeless tale, it’s certainly not one that guarantees a sequel. The film’s ending sees Jack Skellington (Chris Sarandon) modifying and saving Halloween Town’s Christmas before declaring his love for Sally (Catherine O’Hara of Schitt’s Creek), who has reciprocated his affections. Brother, perfectly wraps up Jack’s character arc. Thus, a remake of Tim Burton and Henry Selick’s classic The Nightmare Before Christmas 2 will likely result in a beloved IP being tarnished.

In contrast, Selick’s Wendell and Wild look set to flourish without being constrained by audience expectations. Selick wrote the entire origin story and married his creative genius with hot properties Key and Peele to create a new vision that remains Nightmare Before Christmas’s original stop-motion magic. Selick has proven he’s an adept storyteller in this medium, with 2009’s Coraline being clear proof that he can craft a story without Burton’s direction.

Simply put, Selick has earned the rights to create its own world, with Wendell and Wild looking for a quality product for Netflix’s 2022 movies. He’s also chosen his partners wisely, especially Jordan Peele, an artist whose fingers are firmly on the cusp of victory after cinematic horror hits like Get Out and Us. The Nightmare Before Christmas 2 may be the more recognizable setting, but Henry Selick’s Wendell and Wild is perfectly set up to be a much better film choice for veteran stop-motion directors as well as audiences.

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