1. Miracle on 34th Street
Family favourite and Christmas classic Miracle on 34th Street took home 3 Academy Awards and everybody’s hearts when it hit the silver screen in 1947…But did you know that several of the cameras used to film the movie literally froze due to the bitterly cold New York weather? *Brrrr!*
2. It's A Wonderful Life
We’re already in tears just thinking about the emotion-fuelled iconic festive film that is It’s A Wonderful Life… For many families all over the world, settling down and getting cosy together to watch this movie is a Christmas Eve tradition. Did you know that the set for Bedford Falls, the fictional New York town in which the film is set, took over two months to build and is one of the most extensive sets that has ever been made for an American movie?
3. Home Alone
Home Alone – the movie responsible for launching Macaulay Culkin into the limelight and securing the actor's future as a Hollywood household name – is sure to be on everybody’s list of favourite Christmas movies…But did you know that Joe Pesci, the actor who played burglar Harry Lime in the film, deliberately avoided Culkin on set as he wanted the then 10-year-old actor to think he was mean?
*Sobs*. Elf. The movie that saw the adorably naive elf Buddy, played by Hollywood funny-man Will Ferrell, be exiled from the North Pole due to his unusual height before being sent to streets of New York in search of his father and true identity... We're not crying, you're crying! Fun fact: Did you know that Will Ferrell reportedly caused several (minor) traffic accidents when walking through the Lincoln tunnel in his elf costume?
5. A Christmas Story
This nostalgic period movie tells the tale of Ralphie Parker growing up in the 1940s and wanting nothing more than a BB gun from Santa Clause for Christmas! The charming Christmas film was such a hit when it went to cinemas in 1983 that thousands of complaints were lodged when the movie was eventually pulled from theatres! As a result, the film reportedly played on select screens until January 1984!
6. Love Actually
Unless you’ve been living under a rock since 2003, chances are you’ve seen Love Actually *at least* once. In fact, if we’re being realistic, you’ve probably watched the quintessential rom-com every Christmas for the past 13 years… But did you know that Emma Thompson was dressed in a fat suit for her role as Karen in order to make her appear heavier and less desirable?
7. The Nightmare Before Christmas
Tim Burton’s 1993 animated masterpiece The Nightmare Before Christmas has graced TV screens the world over on the night of December 25th for over two decades now. With it’s breathtaking visuals, childlike dreamscape and memorable musical production; it’s the perfect Christmas movie for families. But did you know we were close to getting a sequel in 2001? Director Tim Burton convinced Walt Disney Pictures out of the idea, explaining: “I was always very protective of [Nightmare] not to do sequels or things of that kind, you know, ‘Jack visits Thanksgiving world’ or other kinds of things just because I felt the movie had a purity to it and people that like it”.
8. The Polar Express
Robert Zemeckis’ The Polar Express broke ground in the world of animation and introduced a generation to the spirit of Christmas. Audiences watched on in wonder and amazement as a young boy embarked on a magical adventure to the North Pole on the Polar Express train, learning important life lessons about bravery and friendship on the way. Did you know that Hollywood A-lister and Academy Award winner Tom Hanks voiced a total of 6 characters for the film, including the train conductor, the hero boy and Santa Claus?!
9. The Holiday
The Holiday, starring Kate Winslet, Cameron Diaz and Jude Law, is the perfect romantic movie to chuck on when December rolls around, and is an undeniable favourite in the marie claire office. The film follows the lives of two troubled, completely different women, who switch households on an online exchange website for Christmas. The movie that ensues is one that is sure to warm your heart and make you tear up (possibly several times)! Did you know that Jude Law’s real-life daughter Iris Law, who is an up-and-coming model, was the inspiration for Kate Winslet’s character’s name, Iris Simpkins?