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Pete Kozachik, ‘The Nightmare Prior to Xmas,’ ‘Coraline’ Director Of Images, Dies At 72

Pete Kozachik, longtime Henry Selick collaborator and director of images on films including The Nightmare Right before Christmas, Coraline, and James and the Large Peach, died on September 12 at his Bay Place residence immediately after a many years-prolonged battle with key progressive aphasia. He was 72.

As a youngster developing up in Michigan in the late 1950s and early 1960s, Kozachik was mesmerized by what he saw on the large screen in movies this kind of as King Kong and The 7th Voyage of Sinbad. His mom apprehensive that the results in the movies could be far too frightening for her son and prompt that potentially the monsters weren’t serious but just robots carrying costumes.

For a time he believed the idea, but figured out that was not the circumstance in third grade after obtaining the journal Well known Monsters of Filmland at a newsstand. In the journal, he found that movies were produced by common persons whose position was generating the pictures he saw on screen. These were being the kinds of careers that Kozachik could picture himself performing a person day. In his 2020 autobiography Tales from the Pumpkin King’s Cameraman, published with his spouse, Katy Moore-Kozachik, he recalled initial mastering about his profession idol Ray Harryhausen: