December’s Featured Chess Set is part of the collection of the World Chess Hall of Fame (WCHOF). Since its creation in 1986, the WCHOF has endeavored to highlight the history and cultural significance of the game of chess. The WCHOF’s collection is diverse and includes sets once owned by legendary players, mass-produced sets with lively pop culture themes, antique ivory sets, travel sets, as well as chess computers. Through these artifacts, the WCHOF illustrates how chess has evolved through its over 1500-year history.
Jack Skellington and his friends face off against the villainous Oogie Boogie in this chess set based upon the 1993 musical film The Nightmare Before Christmas. The movie was directed by Henry Selick, produced by Tim Burton and Denise Di Novi, and featured music by Danny Elfman. In The Nightmare Before Christmas, Jack Skellington, the leader of Halloween Town, stumbles into a portal to Christmas Town. He becomes enchanted with the holiday, and seeks to have the denizens of Halloween Town take over its traditions, kidnapping Santa Claus in the process. The story is told through stop motion animation inspired by that of the classic Rankin/Bass Christmas specials like Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer (1964) and Santa Claus Is Comin’ to Town (1970).