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It Happened One Christmas (1977)

TV Movie  |   |  Comedy, Fantasy  |  11 December 1977 (USA)
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It's Christmas Eve 1944 in the small town of Bedford Falls, New York. A despondent and suicidal Mary Bailey Hatch is praying for guidance on what to do about an incident no fault of her own... See full summary »



(story), (written for television by), 4 more credits »
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Title: It Happened One Christmas (TV Movie 1977)

It Happened One Christmas (TV Movie 1977) on IMDb 6/10

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Nominated for 2 Primetime Emmys. See more awards »
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Cast overview, first billed only:
Uncle Willie
Karen Carlson ...
Cliff Norton ...
Sassini (as Gene Conforti)
Morgan Upton ...
Robert Emhardt ...


It's Christmas Eve 1944 in the small town of Bedford Falls, New York. A despondent and suicidal Mary Bailey Hatch is praying for guidance on what to do about an incident no fault of her own which threatens her name and the community standing of her longtime family business, the Bailey Building and Loan, which she took over after the passing of her father. What Mary does not know is that most in town, including her husband George Hatch and their children, are also praying for her. All the prayers are heard by Joseph, God's gatekeeper of prayers. As there are no other angels available on such a busy day, Joseph assigns Clara Oddbody, angel second class (i.e. she has yet to receive her wings), to Mary's case, which he reluctantly does as Clara has never been assigned a case on her own in the two hundred years she's been in heaven for good reason. As Clara learns about Mary's case, she sees a selfless woman who always wanted to explore the world but never did, while others around her were... Written by Huggo

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


Comedy | Fantasy





Release Date:

11 December 1977 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Sucedió en Navidad  »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:



Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
See  »

Did You Know?


Orson Welles plays the villain, Henry F. Potter. Potter was played in the original It's a Wonderful Life (1946) by Lionel Barrymore. Barrymore played the role of "Ebeneezer Scrooge" on annual broadcasts of "A Christmas Carol" on Welles' Campbell Playhouse radio show. Barrymore had to back out of the 1941 broadcast due to illness, and was replaced by Welles. See more »


When the townspeople sing Auld Lang Syne in the Baily/Hatch house, there is no attempt to sync the song with their lip movement. See more »

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User Reviews

I wish I could get a copy
14 October 2004 | by (US) – See all my reviews

I totally disagree. This was and is a wonderful picture. I don't view things as whether they match up to the remake but if they are enjoyable and worth watching for my family. I would gladly show this to my family and have asked TCM to dig up a copy this Christmas so they can see it. Cloris Leechman is fabulous and Marlo does a great job.

I can't wait for my family to see it and enjoy both It's a Wonderful Life and It Happen One Christmas.

Go to this Christmas and search to see if they found it.

I always like to see both along with The Bishop's Wife and the new one The Preacher's Wife and I hope they will find a copy of Christmas Eve for us to enjoy. Love that Loretta Young.

14 of 20 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

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