A record-breaking number of new films with ‘Christmas’ in the title will be released in 2021.
More than 200 new festive feature films and TV movies naming the holiday are listed on the Internet Movie Database (IMDB) for release this year – a figure that has doubled since 2016, and quadrupled since 2011.
Brandon Gray, co-host of the Deck The Hallmark podcast and one of the authors of a new book called I’ll Be Home For Christmas Movies, told the BBC News: “[Hallmark] bet really big on Christmas and everyone else seemed to notice the ratings.”
Several new films – including Silent Night, starring Keira Knightley, and Netflix‘s Single All The Way – are not factored into the numbers as the title does not include mention of Christmas, meaning the total number of festive movies is even higher.
“For viewers, it’s just a way to escape and to feel for at least two hours this little bit of peace in the midst of the craziness of the holiday season and the craziness of the world in which we have lived in the last couple years,” Gray continued.
‘Shaun The Sheep: The Flight Before Christmas’. Credit: Netflix/Aardman
“They have the same aesthetic because they figured out what works: ‘If we keep everything basically uniform – not too funny, not too sad – people will go from one movie to the next.’ So you have the two people that fall in love and there’s some sort of misunderstanding with about 30 minutes to go and then they’ll figure it out, and they’ll kiss.
“And you do it over and over again, and as long as it looks uniform and feels uniform, people will watch one after the other.”
Gray also noted that there had been an increased focus on diversity in Christmas films, adding: “It’s no longer them just putting a person of colour on screen in a white world, but they’re actually telling stories that feel authentic to who you’re watching on screen.”
Earlier today (December 8) it was reported that Netflix’s festive programme alone is made up of 23 Christmas films and TV shows.