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The Adventure of the Wrong Santa Claus (1914)

When a burglar dressed as Santa Claus steals a family's Christmas presents, amateur detective Octavius sets out to recover the loot.





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Complete credited cast:
Octavius, the Amateur Detective
Julian Reed ...
Ignatz - the Butler
Mr. Randall
Bliss Milford ...
Mrs. Bertha Randall
Kenneth Lawlor ...
Kathleen Coughlin ...
Edith Peters ...
John Sturgeon ...
The Burglar
Grace Randall


The amateur detective Octavius is asked to play 'Santa Claus' at the home of his friends, the Randall family. He picks up a costume and goes to visit them. Although Mrs. Randall already has a 'Santa Claus' costume available, Octavius decides to wear his own. But a burglar sneaks into the house, puts on the other costume, knocks out Octavius, and robs the family. When Octavius comes to, he is determined to catch the criminal. Written by Snow Leopard

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Short | Comedy | Drama | Romance





Release Date:

19 December 1914 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Octavius, the Amateur Detective #12: The Adventure of the Wrong Santa Claus  »

Company Credits

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Technical Specs


Sound Mix:

Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
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Did You Know?


Apparently, the score for this short does not survive; in the version still available on YouTube, its score are the soundtracks of a pair of old Warner Brothers cartoon shorts. See more »


Follows The Adventure of the Stolen Papers (1914) See more »

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User Reviews

Entertaining Feature, & One of the Better Movies in the Series
22 March 2006 | by See all my reviews

This entertaining feature is one of the better movies in the 'Octavius, Amateur Detective' series. It has an interesting story, and it builds things up to a resourceful chase sequence that combines suspense with humor. It does have some of the technical flaws, mainly in the editing, that were unfortunately common in the series, but otherwise it's pretty good.

As Octavius, Barry O'Moore efficiently defines the energetic, slightly self-satisfied amateur detective, making him likable despite his flaws and blind spots. Here, Octavius is asked to dress up as 'Santa Claus' for the benefit of his friends' children, only to become involved with a burglar who uses a 'Santa' suit for his own purposes. There is also a little romance thrown in on the side.

The best part of the movie is the chase sequence between the two 'Santas', which has some amusing moments and a clever outcome. The pace is a little more even than in other Octavius features, and the editing is also better, with only one or two really significant defects.

For a time, this series must have been relatively popular, given the number of features in it. The lively approach and the simple but well-defined central character also keep it watchable today.

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