Disney Not Likely to Create Live Stage Adaptation of Tim Burton's 'Nightmare Before Christmas'

Despite an unauthorized fan video that has gone viral, it seems Disney isn't biting. Yet.

Photo: Courtesy of Matthew Patrick Davis/YouTube

Last week, a Tim Burton fan page posted a video of a live version of the animated Disney film “The Nighmare Before Christmas,” and it quickly went viral. Within days, more than 15 million people had viewed the video on Facebook.

Many commenters were excited by the idea of the cult classic becoming a stage musical, hoping that the video might be an early workshop from Disney. But as it turns out, it wasn't.

The video was shot in 2008, when a group of acting students at the Beverly Hills Playhouse staged a scene from the film, at a cost of roughly $900.

The 37-year-old star and co-author of the unauthorized stage adaption, Los Angeles-based actor and songwriter Matthew Patrick Davis, spoke to Travel + Leisure about the newfound popularity of the video, which he uploaded to YouTube in 2012.

The clip, which features the 6'8" Davis giving a pitch perfect rendition of the song “Jack's Lament,” was lifted from his Youtube page.

“I performed the song in a workshop and my classmates loved it so much that we decided to stage it and videotape it. We didn't have the rights, only our love of the film,” he said. “It's our impassioned plea to Disney to give people what they want and start workshopping it.”

The YouTube clip currently has more than 2.3 million views.

“If I could be Jack, it would be a dream come true,” said Davis, who made his Broadway debut playing the Geek in the 2014 revival of “Side Show.”

When T+L reached out to Disney to see if Tim Burton or Disney Theatrical Group president Tom Schumacher had seen the student video, or if a workshop was in development, a spokesperson replied without comment.

So for now, a live Disney stage production of “The Nightmare Before Christmas” will have to remain a dream. (Another amateur, unauthorized live adaption can be found on YouTube, but it's not for the faint of heart.)

This October, Danny Elfman, the original singing voice of Jack Skellington and the composer of the film's score, returns to the Hollywood Bowl for three concert performances alongside Catherine O'Hara, Ken Page, and Paul Reubens, who lent their voices to the original 1993 film.

Christopher Tkaczyk is the Senior News Editor at Travel + Leisure. Follow him on Twitter and Instagram at @ctkaczyk.

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