They had an interview with Coraline director Henry Selick on All Things Considered this evening, and maybe I'll actually get to see it in the theater if I plan accordingly.

I've been a fan of Henry Selick since The Nightmare Before Christmas, of course; that remains one of my favorite movies. But I'm a fan of his for more than one reason; back in 1993, when NBC came out, I wrote a letter to Henry Selick in care of the movie studio, (this was Before Computers, after all) because I had a question that I thought he could answer, since he was the director and all.

If I remember correctly, I addressed the letter to Tim Burton or Henry Selick, mailed it, and pretty much forgot about it. The only thing I remember about that letter was that it was handwritten, and I included my name, address and phone number at the bottom.

One evening months later, as I was cleaning out the refrigerator and listening to--you guessed it--the Nightmare Before Christmas soundtrack, the phone rang, and I picked it up.

The person on the other end asked for me, and when I said "This is Jennifer," he said, "Hi! This is Henry Selick."

And for a second, I had no idea who it was, until he said, "The director of The Nightmare Before Christmas."

As I pretty much melted under fan-overload, he went on to explain that he'd received my letter from the studio, and instead of writing a letter in reply because by then, it had been months since I'd written my letter, he thought he would just call me.

Me! I mean, come on. Directors of movies just don't call people out of thin air.

Once we got over the "Really? This is really Henry Selick?" bit, we chatted for a few minutes about the answer to my question, his next project (which was James and the Giant Peach), and probably other things that I don't remember (after all, that was probably fourteen years ago) and I eventually hung up the phone and numbly walked into the living room where the rest of my family was and said, quite casually, "So.... guess who that was on the phone?!!?!!!!!!!!!!"

And after we got over the "Really?" "No, really!" part, I realized how unusual that had to be--that a director of an actual movie would just call someone up who wrote them a letter--out of the blue--and I decided I would be a fan of Henry Selick's for the rest of my life.

I'm really looking forward to seeing Coraline.


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