Halloween is upon us, and that can only mean one thing: it’s time to talk about Christmas! Specifically, Disney Christmas, which includes many holiday classic films and characters that have become cemented in merry traditions around the world. Even more specifically, today, we’re going to be talking about Father Christmas, Jolly Ole Saint Nick, Kris Kringle, Papa Noel, The Santa Clause, or whatever name you want to call him, but here, we’ll just call the big guy Tim Allen.
Tim Allen Is a Disney Favorite
Although you probably know Tim Allen from his hit 90’s show Home Improvement, where he played alongside Patricia Richardson, Richard Karn, and Jonathan Taylor Thomas as Tim “The Tool Man” Taylor, it’s more likely you recognize the decorated Disney star as the voice of Buzz Lightyear from Toy Story (1995).
Allen’s work on Toy Story, along with Tom Hanks as Woody, was a monumental step in 3D animation, as the film ultimately would be what put Pixar Entertainment on the map, leading to its acquisition by The Walt Disney Company in 2006. However, although the Tool Time actor was popularized as the easily recognizable voice of Emporer Zorg’s sworn enemy, Allen’s work with Disney didn’t stop there.
Tim Allen’s comedy sitcom would continue on Disney-owned ABC until 1999, followed by three more Toy Story films. Home Improvement’s Tim Taylor would reprise the role of Buzz Lightyear in Toy Story 2 (1999), Toy Story 3 (2010), and Toy Story 4 (2019), with another rumored to be in the works. Allen would also record nine seasons of the American TV series Last Man Standing, which aired on ABC from 2011-2017, leading to great controversy over the Jungle 2 Jungle star’s conservative views and stance in the show.
Despite a long, relatively enjoyable relationship with Disney, Allen’s history would be slightly dotted with controversy during his career, leaving his most popular live-action role with the company a traditional holiday film enjoyed by many today. In 1994, Tim Allen took the part of Scott Calvin in the Disney comedy film The Santa Clause. Unlike his years as the voice behind Buzz Lightyear and his time helping Disney lay stake to small screens around the country, Allen was now in the big time, front and center.
‘The Santa Clause’
The Santa Clause, directed by John Pasquin and Michael Lembeck, tells the story of high-rolling toy inventor and divorced dad Scott Calvin, who accidentally kills Jolly Ole Saint Nick on Christmas Eve by startling the big merry elf. At the eagerness of his son Charlie Calvin, Calvin puts on the coat of Santa, and a hilarious metamorphosis into Santa Claus begins. As Scott Calvin fights his change into the Father of Christmas, he eventually learns to give in and embrace his new role.
Teaming up with Eric Lloyd and Wendy Crewson, the comedy explores Allen’s descent into Christmas’ main event and his seemingly strained relationship with his son, ex-wife, and her new boyfriend Neil, played by Judge Reinhold. As Calvin takes over as the big man, he gains a new outlook on Christmas, its traditions, and family bonds to be enjoyed around the holiday.
The film was a hit with audiences. Filled to the brim with classic Tim Allen one-liners, Allen’s portrayal of the reluctant yet hilarious Scott Calvin is comedy gold. The holiday movie quickly gained steam and is now part of almost everyone’s holiday season watchlist. Its success led to two sequels, The Santa Clause 2 (2002) and The Santa Clause 3: The Escape Clause (2006). Bringing back popular characters from the first movie, like Bernard (David Krumholtz), the sequels are also a big part of holiday movie binge-watching. Featuring other funny names like Martin Short as Jack Frost and Kevin Pollack as Cupid, The Santa Clause series did so well that Disney created a series for their streaming service, Disney+.
‘The Santa Clauses’
Tim Allen would go on to put back on the “fat suit” and beard in 2022’s The Santa Clauses on Disney+. Bringing back Elizabeth Mitchell from the sequels, Allen would once again become Santa Claus for Disney, earning him his rightful place on holiday watchlists.
The American Christmas comedy television series created by Jack Burditt centers around the story of Santa Claus from the popular Disney films. The sequel to The Santa Clause 3: The Escape Clause features Allen, upon turning 65, realizing that his time to select a successor is coming swiftly.
The new show was a smashing success for Disney+, which renewed for a second season in December 2022. The latest season of The Santa Clauses will premiere in November of this year, bringing back all of the fun antics of Tim Allen and his family, including new wife, Mrs. Claus, Carol Calvin (Elizabeth Mitchell), venture to the South Pole with his family and elves. The second season of The Santa Clauses will bring back much of the original cast, but will also include funny man Tracy Morgan as The Easter Bunny!
Step Aside Tim Allen, Danny Glover is Coming to Town
Although Tim Allen will reprise the role of Santa Claus in the next season of The Santa Clauses, he won’t be the only one sleighing the red and white this holiday season. Disney has announced a couple of new holiday projects in the works for their streaming service, and one brings Lethal Weapon star Danny Glover to the North Pole.
According to Deadline, Danny Glover will play Santa Claus in Disney+’s The Naughty Nine. According to Deadline, “In ‘The Naughty Nine’, mischievous fifth grader Andy (Winslow Fegley) finds himself without a present from Santa on Christmas morning. Realizing he must have landed on the naughty list and feeling unfairly maligned, Andy pulls together a team of eight other naughty listers to help him execute an elaborate heist in Santa’s Village at the North Pole to get the presents they feel they deserve. Along the way, the group realizes that the best way off the naughty list is to redirect their unique talents for good ― instead of mischief.“
Recent teaser trailers and photos were released to Disney Channel late last month, leading many to excitement over the new project, which will debut November 22 at 8 p.m. ET on the Disney Channel as well as on Thanksgiving Day on Disney+.
Although Glover’s resume is impressive, the new movie will feature a relatively unknown cast, including Camila Rodriguez, Imogen Cohen, Clara Stack, and Deric McCabe. However, despite the newcomer cast, the film’s direction will be headed up by notables Alberto Belli, Suzanne Todd, Jed Elinoff, and Scott Thomas (writers and producers).
Whether it’s Tim Allen bringing Santa back to life or Danny Glover taking a new approach with the role, one thing is for sure: Christmas holiday watching will be a lot of fun this holiday season. As soon as we make the switch from pumpkins to peppermint, we’ll be here to bring you all of the festive Disney goodness to fill your stockings this year.