Christmas Movies and TV Specials to watch and stream in December

OK, so I sound like that cranky old dude (“Get off my lawn!”), but back in my There were only two notable Christmas specials that day, NBC’s Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer (featuring those Norelco commercials) and A Charlie Brown Christmas (on CBS). I’ll throw in “Frosty the Snowman” for good measure — but only because comedian Jackie Vernon voiced Frosty. Otherwise, meh thereon.

Those were the days (and nights) of the three-channel television landscape. Now in 2022 there are hundreds of Christmas specials out there across broadcast, cable, streaming and probably another platform that I forgot. Two networks, Lifetime and Hallmark Channel, also bring holiday films during the summer months – a clever marketing twist that ensures healthy viewership. Nowadays, the specials start appearing before Halloween. That’s scary enough.

But there’s no mistaking the hunger for vacation-themed movies and specials. Unfortunately we cannot write or mention all of them. So here’s a snapshot list of what television (in all its forms) has to offer this month in the form of original holiday movies and specials.


Remarkable: “A New Orleans Noel”

Saturday 3 Dec (8pm)

Grace Hill (Keshia Knight Pulliam) and Anthony Brown (Brad James) couldn’t be more different…but when they’re both hired to work together on the home of New Orleans candy icon Loretta Brown (Patti LaBelle), they find themselves at odds over more than one another only architecture. Tim Reid plays Marcel, a retired friend who catches Loretta’s eye.

Alicia Leigh Willis (left) and Caitlin Clark filming a scene for Christmas at The Greenbrier.
fox nation

fox nation

Remarkable: “Christmas at the Greenbrier” (streaming now).

In the network’s second vacation film, Emmy-nominated Alicia Leigh Willis and Josh Murray play widowed mother Abby and former pro soccer player Ben, who were previously dating but ended their relationship when Ben turned pro. During a stay at The Greenbrier, they unexpectedly reunite – and sparks fly.


Remarkable: “Christmas in the Golden Dragon”

Thursday 8 Dec (10pm)

With the closure of the city’s famous Chinese restaurant, two siblings must reevaluate their lives alongside the restaurant’s loyal regulars. Starring Kara Wang, Osric Chau, Sara Canning, Antonio Cupo, Barbara Niven.


Remarkable: “Dolly Parton’s Mountain Magic Christmas”

Thursday, Dec. 1 (8 p.m.)

A modern motion picture musical about the making of a TV special for the network, it follows the backstage story and on-camera results of Parton’s desire to lift the spirits of a weary world by sharing the unique “mountain magic” she creates has always found in and around Dollywood at Christmas. Featuring Tom Everett Scott, Angel Parker and Ana Gasteyer as well as musical guests including Willie Nelson, Billy Ray Cyrus and Miley Cyrus.


Remarkable: “Mariah Carey: Merry Christmas everyone!”

Tuesday 20 Dec (8pm-10pm)

Carey’s concert special was filmed at Madison Square Garden Arena – with Carey singing her hit “All I Want for Christmas Is You,” of course.


Remarkable: “A very secluded holiday”

Wednesday 14 Dec (8pm)

The ’90s boy band – Howie Dorough, AJ McLean, Brian Littrell, Kevin Richardson and Nick Carter – sing tunes from their new Christmas album, including ‘White Christmas’, ‘Feliz Navidad’ and ‘I’ll Be Home for Christmas’. ”


Remarkable: “Scrooge: A Christmas Carol”

2 Dec

Another version of the well-known Charles Dickens story – but this is a “supernatural, time-traveling musical adaptation” with the voices of Luke Evans, Jessie Buckley, Olivia Colman and Johnny Flynn.

Gabourey Sidibe in "Everything I didn't want for Christmas." She is standing in front of a Christmas tree and looks at a note she is holding and frowns.
Gabourey Sidibe in Everything I Didn’t Want for Christmas.


Remarkable: “A Christmas Story Christmas” (Streaming Now)

The classic Christmas movie, A Christmas Story, is updated with Ralphie (Peter Billingsley) coming of age and coming to terms with the holidays – as a father. Recurring cast members include Ian Petrella (Randy), Zack Ward (Scut Farkus, the one with the “yellow eyes”), Scott Schwartz (Flick) and RD Robb (Schwartz).

Big American family

Remarkable: “B&B Happy”

Sunday 4 Dec (8pm)

Renowned luxury travel blogger Tracey Moore (Jen Lilley) is invited on a Christmas getaway in exchange for discussing a small-town B&B – where, of course, she falls in love with the owner’s son, Graham (Jesse Hutch).
Sunday, December 4th at 8pm ET

VH1/Comedy Central/Paramount Network

Remarkable: “Everything I didn’t want for Christmas”

Wednesday 7 December (8pm) on VH1

Emily, trying to improve her life and circumstances, writes a letter to Santa Claus – and, wouldn’t you know, her “wine-soaked” wishes begin to come true (though she can’t remember most of them). Starring Gabourey Sidibe, Lorette Devine, Kel Mitchell, Karen Knox and Andrew Bushell.


Remarkable: “The Boy, the Mole, the Fox and the Horse”

Scene with a boy, a horse and a fox "The boy, the mole, the fox and the horse" on AppleTV+.
The Boy, the Mole, the Fox and the Horse on Apple TV+.

Sunday 25 December

The animated film, based on the book of the same name by Charlie Mackesy, follows the journey and unlikely friendship of a boy, a mole, a fox and a horse as they travel together in the boy’s search for a home. Stars include Tom Hollander, Idris Elba, Gabriel Byrne and Jude Coward (as The Boy).


Remarkable: “Christmas at Wolf Creek”

Sunday 25 Dec (7pm)

A lost reindeer threatens the annual Christmas game – and a struggling young couple must work together to save Christmas for the town and for each other. Starring Tim Rozon, Nola Martin, Art Hindle and Madeline Leon.

Photo by That Girl Lay Lay.  She makes the peace sign and stands in front of a large MTV banner.
The girl was lying.
Getty Images for MTV/Paramount G


Remarkable: “The Great Nickmas Tree Sliming… Hosted by That Girl Lay Lay”

Thursday 15 Dec (7pm)

When Lay Lay accidentally pulls Santa’s sleigh out of the sky, it looks like Christmas will be canceled — unless she and her celebrity friends (including Drew Barrymore, Keke Palmer and Hayley Kiyoko) help Santa close the sleigh repair to deliver gifts. Nick stars making appearances include Isaiah Crews, Young Dylan and the cast of Danger Force.


Remarkable: “Christmas Open House”

Wednesday 7 Dec (10pm)

Atlanta real estate agent Melissa Norwood (Katie Stevens) teams up with her old high school crush, real estate agent David Phelps (Victor Rasuk), to prepare and sell her mother’s house before the holidays – with the help of local artists Henry and Sarah Wright (HGTV stars Ben and Erin Napier.) Christmas Movies and TV Specials to watch and stream in December

Emma Bowman

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