Everything you never knew about your favourite Christmas movies.

The best thing about this time of year?

We might get some presents, sure. We spend time with family, yes. But there’s something better than all of that combined that makes December so exciting…

We get to rewatch Love Actually. (Or whatever your Christmas movie of choice happens to be.)

And now you can bore/impress everyone with this entirely unimportant/essential guide to all the things you wish you never knew about the movies that make Christmas.

10. How the Grinch Stole Christmas

The Grinch make-up took three hours to apply every day and Jim Carrey felt so confined by it that he was given counselling from a Navy Seal. He was taught torture restraints to deal with the heavy makeup.

9. Jingle All The Way

The film where Arnold Schwarzenegger goes above and beyond to get an action figure for his son on Christmas was actually based on the 1980s shopping frenzy over Cabbage Patch Dolls.

8. The Holiday

Kate Winslet and Cameron Diaz do a house swap. They’ve sworn off men and want to spend Christmas in a new country – alone. But they soon meet people from each other’s lives and it gets messy.

There’s a particular scene where Kate Winslet and co-star  Jack Black are in a DVD store. Jack Black starts humming the tune from Mrs Robinson – the theme from The Graduate – when the camera shows Dustin Hoffman, star of The Graduate, browsing movies. He looks over and shakes his head at the pair humming.

This cameo was completely unplanned. The actor told Jay Leno that he was driving around when he noticed the cameras in Blockbuster so he went to have a look. He noticed the director, who was a friend of his, and they set up the scene.

7. It’s a Wonderful Life

This classic film actually bombed when it was first released in 1946. Now, everyone pretends they love it.

6. Home Alone

The Macaulay Culkin film that spawned a thousand sequels holds the Guiness World Record for highest grossing comedy film of all time – it made $533,000,000 at the box office.

It’s also been revealed that Joe Pesci, who played the robber, deliberately avoided Macaulay Culkin on set to provoke real feelings of hate and fear in him.

5. Elf

“Buddy the elf, what’s your favourite colour?”

Widely dubbed (by us, at least) the best Christmas movie OF ALL TIME, the Will Ferrell classic is about a human who grows up at the North Pole and thinks he’s an elf. He ventures to New York City to find his real dad as an adult.


But did you know Will Ferrell actually caused quite a few car accidents when he was walking through the city? Drivers were so surprised to see him in costume that they crashed into each other.

Fun fact: Ferrell turned down $29 million to do Elf 2. 

4. The Santa Clause

This 1994 Tim Allen movie features a man who has to replace Santa after he accidentally kills him. As it turns out, there was a line in older versions of the film where Tim Allen’s character said “1-800-SPANK-ME’ sarcastically.

A woman in America called the number, which was supposed to be fictional, and found that it was actually a phone sex line. More and more children called the number over the next few years and Disney received so many complaints that they cut the line and purchased the phone number.

Click through the gallery below for before and after photos of the cast of The Santa Clause. Article continues below gallery


3. Miracle on 34th Street

The movie, set around New York’s famous Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade, starred a young Natalie Wood.

According to her biographer, she was convinced that Edmund Gwenn – who played Santa – was actually Santa Claus. It was only at the wrap party when Gwenn was in normal clothes and out of character that she finally realised.

2. Bad Santa

The foul-mouthed, drunk, horrible department store Santa played by Billy Bob Thornton has become a classic character.


Years after the film’s release, Thornton admitted to being drunk throughout most of filming. The film also holds the record for the most profanities in a Christmas movie – ‘fuck’ is said 170 times, ‘shit’ is said 74 times, ‘ass’ is said 31 times, ‘bitch’ is said 10 times, and ‘bastard’ is said once.

1. Love Actually

Actor Kris Marshall returned his pay for the scene where the three American girls undress him because he said he was absolutely willing to do it for free. Olivia Olsen, who plays Joanna, did all her own singing at the Christmas play but it was edited to make her sound younger and less polished. Emma Thompson wore a fat suit to appear frumpy.

Also, the airport footage of families embracing is real – it was filmed at Heathrow Airport in London.

Finally, did you know the word ‘actually’ is actually said in the film 22 times?

Click through the gallery below for before and after photos of the cast of Love Actually.

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