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Caroline Thompson
Born (1956-04-23) April 23, 1956 (age 66)
Washington, D.C.
  • Screenwriter
  • Director
  • Producer

Caroline Thompson (born April 23, 1956) is an American novelist, screenwriter, film director, and producer. She wrote the screenplays for Tim Burton's films Edward Scissorhands, The Nightmare Before Christmas, and Corpse Bride. She co-wrote the story for Edward Scissorhands and co-adapted a new stage version of the film with director and choreographer Matthew Bourne. Thompson also adapted the screenplay for the film version of Wicked Lovely, a bestselling fantasy series, in 2011, but the production was put into turnaround. She directed Black Beauty (1994); Buddy (1997), which she also wrote; and the television film Snow White: The Fairest of Them All (2001), also as producer and co-writer.

Early life

Thompson was born in Washington, D.C., the daughter of Bettie Marshall (née Warner), a teacher, and Thomas Carlton Thompson, Jr., a lawyer.[1] She received her early education in Washington. She later moved to Cambridge, Massachusetts to attend Radcliffe College, and eventually graduated from Amherst College in 1978 with a degree in English and classic literature.[2]


Thompson moved to Los Angeles, supporting herself as a freelance book reviewer and writer. In 1983, she published a novel First Born which director Penelope Spheeris chose to adapt into a film, and from whom she started learning scriptwriting while writing the drafts of the film's screenplay.[3] Though the movie was never made, the project inspired her to pursue a career as a screenwriter.[4] Tim Burton was impressed with the novel, which was "about an abortion that came back to life". He felt First Born had the same psychological elements he wanted to showcase in Edward Scissorhands, and hired her to write its screenplay as a spec script.[5]

Her other works include Snow White: The Fairest of Them All for Hallmark, starring Miranda Richardson and Kristin Kreuk, The Secret Garden, Buddy, Black Beauty, Homeward Bound: The Incredible Journey, and The Addams Family.

From the above, she directed Black Beauty (1994) as her directorial debut,[6] followed by Snow White in 2001 for TV[7] and Buddy. She was the producer for Snow White and the associate producer for The Secret Garden and Edward Scissorhands.

Her screenplay for Wicked Lovely, intended to be directed by Mary Harron, was in turnaround in 2011.[8]

Thompson was presented with the Distinguished Screenwriter Award at the 2011 Austin Film Festival.


As writer

As herself

  • Prop Culture (2020) episode: "Tim Burton's The Nightmare Before Christmas"
  • The Holiday Movies That Made Us (2020) episode: "Nightmare Before Christmas"


  • First born, Published by Coward-McCann, 1983. Template:ISBN.
  • Edward Scissorhands, by Thompson & Tim Burton. Published by distributed by Cinestore, 1990.
  • The Secret Garden, Adapted by Thompson. Published by s.n., 1991.
  • The Addams Family: A Novelization, by Elizabeth Faucher, Thompson, & Larry Wilson. Published by Scholastic Inc., 1991. Template:ISBN.
  • Tim Burton's Nightmare Before Christmas: A Novel, by Daphne Skinner, Thompson, Michael McDowell, & Tim Burton. Published by Puffin Books, 1994. Template:ISBN.
  • Snow White, by Thompson & Julie Hickson. Published by s.n, 2000.
  • Tim Burton's Nightmare Before Christmas: The Film, the Art, the Vision, by Frank Thompson, Tim Burton. Published by Disney Editions, 2002. Template:ISBN. Caroline Thompson – Page 179.
  • <templatestyles></templatestyles>Salisbury, Mark; Burton, Tim (2006). Burton on Burton. Faber and Faber. ISBN 0-571-22926-3.


  1. "Caroline Thompson Biography (1956-)". 
  2. Biography The New York Times.
  3. Interview
  4. Biography Template:Webarchive Yahoo! Movies.
  5. Salisbury, Burton, p.84–88
  6. Black Beauty Review Entertainment Weekly.
  7. on making "Snow White: The Fairest of Them All"
  8. Stuart Kemp (Hollywood Reporter), "Screen Talk: No fairytale ending in sight", The Independent (UK), September 2, 2011
  9. <templatestyles></templatestyles>N'Duka, Amanda (April 28, 2017). "Untitled Robert Zemeckis Project Starring Steve Carell Eyes Thanksgiving 2018 Release". Deadline. Retrieved April 28, 2017.

External links

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