‘Lady and the Tramp,’ ‘Home Alone,’ ‘Tim Burton’s The Nightmare Before Christmas,’ and ’12 Years a Slave’ Added to National Film Registry

Disney’s Lady and the Tramp (1955), 20th Century’s Home Alone (1990), Disney’s Tim Burton’s The Nightmare Before Christmas (1993), and Searchlight Pictures’ 12 Years a Slave (2013) are among the 25 films named today to the Library of Congress’ National Film Registry.

Each year since 1989, the Library of Congress has named 25 films that it deems as “culturally, historically, or esthetically important” to its National Film Registry. Online nominations from the general public are part of the selection process—and Home Alone was one of two titles that “drew significant support,” the Library of Congress noted. The Library of Congress reported that 6,875 titles were submitted for consideration this year.

“Films are an integral piece of America’s cultural heritage, reflecting stories of our nation for more than 125 years. We are proud to add 25 diverse films to the National Film Registry as we preserve our history through film,” said Carla Hayden, Librarian of Congress. “We’re grateful to the film community for collaborating with the Library of Congress in our goal to preserve the heritage of cinema for generations to come.”

The animated feature Lady and the Tramp tells the love story of Lady (voiced by Barbara Luddy), a cocker spaniel from a respectable home, who falls for Tramp (voiced by Larry Roberts), a mutt who lives in the railroad yards. Not only was it Disney Studios’ most mature love story to date, but the film marked a technological innovation. In addition to standard theatrical formats, Disney released the film in the wide screen CinemaScope process, in part to keep people going to the theaters following the advent of television.

In the holiday classic Home Alone, 8-year-old Kevin McCallister (Macaulay Culkin) becomes the man of the house overnight after his family accidentally leaves him behind on Christmas vacation. The mischievous youngster must then use his creativity and wit to stave off two bumbling burglars (Joe Pesci and Daniel Stern). Chris Columbus directs the film, from a script by John Hughes, and composer John Williams contributes a memorable score.

In Tim Burton’s The Nightmare Before Christmas, filmmaker Tim Burton won over an even larger (and decidedly younger) crowd with his delightful stop-motion animated story. Jack Skellington (voiced by Chris Sarandon), whose giant pumpkin head rests precariously on top of his rail-thin body, is the king of Halloween Town. One year he dreams of bringing a little Christmas magic to his humble hamlet. Conceived and produced by Burton (with direction by Henry Selick), the film features iconic songs by Disney Legend Danny Elfman.

Winner of the Academy Award® for Best Picture, 12 Years a Slave offers a raw, visceral look at slavery on a Louisiana plantation. Directed by Steve McQueen, it is based on the 1853 memoir by Solomon Northup, an African American free man who was kidnapped and sold into slavery for 12 years before regaining his freedom. The film also won Academy Awards for Best Adapted Screenplay (John Ridley) and Best Supporting Actress (Lupita Nyong’o).

“Slavery for me was a subject matter that hadn’t been sort of given enough recognition within the narrative of cinema history,” McQueen said upon the film’s induction into the Library. “I wanted to address it for that reason, but also because it was a subject which had so much to do with how we live now. It wasn’t just something which was dated. It was something which is living and breathing, because you see the evidence of slavery today.”

These four films join 24 others from Disney’s library in the National Film Registry: Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs (1937) in 1989; Fantasia (1940) in 1990; Pinocchio (1940) in 1994; Steamboat Willie (1928) in 1998; Beauty and the Beast (1991) in 2002; Toy Story (1995) in 2005; Three Little Pigs (1933) in 2007; Disneyland Dream (1956) in 2009; Bambi (1942) in 2011; Mary Poppins (1964) in 2013; The Old Mill (1937) and The Story of Menstruation (1946) in 2015; The Lion King (1994), Rushmore (1998), and Who Framed Roger Rabbit (1988) in 2016; Dumbo (1941) in 2017; Cinderella (1950) in 2018; Old Yeller (1957) and Sleeping Beauty (1959) in 2019; Flowers and Trees (1932), Star Wars: Return of the Jedi (1983), and WALL-E (2008) in 2021; and The Little Mermaid (1989) and Iron Man (2008) in 2022.

Two of this year’s films will be screened at Live! at the Library: Tim Burton’s The Nightmare Before Christmas will screen Thursday, December 21, at 6:30 p.m. ET, and Home Alone will screen Thursday, December 28, at 6:30 p.m. ET. Free timed-entry passes are available here.