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The Year Without a Santa Claus (1974)

When a weary and discouraged Santa Claus considers skipping his Christmas Eve run one year, Mrs. Claus and his Elves set out to change his mind.

Writers:

William J. Keenan (teleplay) (as William Keenan), Phyllis McGinley (novel)
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Cast

Complete credited cast:
Shirley Booth ... Mrs. Santa (voice)
Mickey Rooney ... Santa Claus (voice)
Dick Shawn ... Snow Miser (voice)
George S. Irving ... Heat Miser (voice)
Bob McFadden Bob McFadden ... Jingle Bells (voice)
Rhoda Mann Rhoda Mann ... Mother Nature (voice)
Bradley Bolke Bradley Bolke ... Jangle Bells (voice)
Ron Marshall Ron Marshall ... Mr. Thistlewhite (voice)
Colin Duffy Colin Duffy ... Ignatius Thistlewhite (voice)
Christine Winter Christine Winter ... Blue Christmas girl (voice)
The Wee Winter Singers The Wee Winter Singers ... Chorus (voice)
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Storyline

Mrs. Claus tells us about the time Santa had a bad cold and decided to take a vacation from Christmas. Two of his elves, Jingle Bells and Jangle Bells decided to go out (with Vixen) to find children to convince Santa that the Christmas spirit is still important to everybody else. But they have to get past Heat Miser and Snow Miser, first, before they land in Southtown, USA, where it never snows for Christmas. But the Miser Brothers can't agree to let it snow in Southtown. But Mrs. Santa knows their mom--Mother Nature. Written by Kathy Li

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis


Certificate:

TV-G | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

10 December 1974 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

El año sin Santa Claus See more »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Rankin/Bass Productions See more »
Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Mono (Westrex Recording System)

Color:

Color (Technicolor)

Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

When Mother Nature instructs her sons to cooperate with Mrs. Clause she tells the Snow Miser to let it snow once in South Town and instructs the Heat Miser to let there be a nice summer day at the north pole. That's backwards. See more »

Goofs

Snow Miser refers to Heat Miser as his step-brother. Heat Miser refers to Snow Miser as his brother. When Mother Nature summons the Misers, each addresses her as "Mother". If Heat Miser is Snow Miser's step-brother, Mother Nature is either Snow Miser's mother or Heat Miser's mother, but she cannot be mother to both. See more »

Quotes

Santa Claus: All right. What are you up to?
Mrs. Santa: Up to? Do I look like I'm up to something?
Santa Claus: No, you don't look like you're up to something, but whenever you look like you're not up to ANYTHING, you're up to something.
See more »

Connections

Featured in Batman & Robin (1997) See more »

Soundtracks

Anyone Can Be Santa
Music by Maury Laws
Lyrics by Jules Bass
Performed by Shirley Booth
See more »

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User Reviews

 
Snow Miser and Heat Miser Steal the Show
19 December 2002 | by Raymond Valinoti, Jr.See all my reviews

Why has THE YEAR WITHOUT A SANTA CLAUS endured for so many years? I don't believe it's because of its scenario. The concept of an ailing Santa Claus, convinced the world doesn't care for him, deciding not to ride his sleigh one Christmas is promising. However, its execution is too low-key to provide conflict or pathos. There's a touching rendition of "Blue Christmas" by a child writing a letter to Santa, but the other characters' reactions to Santa's decision seem too mild to generate real drama. Most of the other songs are pleasant but unmemorable. The plot's resolution is too contrived to be affecting.

The two real reasons for THE YEAR WITHOUT A SANTA CLAUS's popularity are Snow Miser and Heat Miser. They are minor characters with limited onscreen time, but they blow away the other characters. Those quarreling siblings provide the special with some much needed brio. As the voice of Snow Miser, Dick Shawn oozes with self-satisfied smarm. Yet he conveys such gleeful humor in his delivery that his oiliness endears viewers. As the voice of Heat Miser, George S. Irving is hilariously irascible, an overgrown brat who fumes over everything associated with snow. It is this very childishness that makes Heat Miser so amusing. Of course, their musical numbers stop the show not because of their lyrics, which are repetitive, but their snappy deliveries.

The Miser brothers are so delightful that their absence creates a void in THE YEAR WITHOUT SANTA CLAUS. One wishes that Rankin Bass, which produced this special, had produced a special focusing on them. It is too late now, at least with the voice of Dick Shawn, who has long passed on. One can still appreciate the fact these characters were devised at all. Without them, THE YEAR WITHOUT SANTA CLAUS would probably be forgotten by now.


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