About Christmas TV History

Saturday, November 2, 2013

Christmas TV Movies 2013

Ready or not, it's that time of year again!  Readers frequently ask me when Christmas TV programming begins and they are usually surprised by my answer--the day after Halloween.  To be more accurate, Christmas TV programming airs year round.  In fact, every single day, 365 days a year, there are typically multiple Christmas-themed episodes and theatrical release movies to choose from that air throughout the TV networks' daily schedules.  I follow these Christmas listings fairly closely and make suggestions on the best of these listings--or at least the most interesting, and most rare ones--in two places.  You are welcome to follow my suggestions, "SET YOUR DVRs....," on my facebook page Tis the Season TV and also on twitter, @TistheSeasonTV

However, now is that special time of year when the TV networks begin to premiere their NEW Christmas TV movies as well as open up their schedules to re-broadcast their older Christmas TV movies.  It's exciting, isn't it?  Let me guide you toward finding the new Christmas TV movies, as well as where to find older favorites airing in the TV listings. 

Christmas TV movies can usually be found in a few places--please review my post from last summer entitled Where to Watch Christmas Movies on TV.   Don't forget to note the difference between theatrical release movies and made-for-TV movies. 

You may have noticed that the Hallmark Channel has already begun airing their Christmas TV movies.  They typically begin airing Christmas TV movies the week after Halloween.  They have already begun airing older Hallmark original Christmas TV movies from their archives and will continue this each day in November--and December.  This year, Hallmark Channel will premiere its first new Christmas TV movie on Friday, Nov. 8th--entitled Pete's Christmas--and the premieres will continue to roll out every weekend through November and into mid-December on Saturdays and Sundays at 8pm(ET).  Hallmark Channel is debuting twelve new movies in the 2013 season alone.  Check out this link to the Hallmark Channel website learn more about these new titles.

Don't overlook the Hallmark Movie Channel.  They begin airing older Christmas TV movies starting Monday, November 11th with all-day marathons.  (The all-day marathons of Christmas movies continue each weekday--and exclude Saturdays and Sundays through November).  This may be the schedule to watch if you're looking to re-watch an older favorite movie.  Skimming the titles, I see rare TV movies airing such as Angel of Pennsylvania Avenue (with Robert Urich), and The Night They Saved Christmas (with Jaclyn Smith and Art Carney), as well as older theatrical release movies such as Holiday Affair (starring Robert Mitchum and Janet Leigh), It Happened on 5th Avenue, Christmas in Connecticut (with Barbara Stanwyck), and more.  Hallmark Movie Channel is also premiering the new Christmas TV movie Christmas with Tucker, a prequel to the much-beloved TV movie A Dog Named Christmas, on Monday Nov. 25th at 9pm(ET).

One new Christmas TV movie in 2013 is A Country Christmas Story debuting on Lifetime.

Lifetime begins airing older Christmas TV movies starting Wednesday, Nov. 6th.  According to their November schedule, you can watch at least one Christmas movie each day throughout the month!  That's exciting!  Lifetime will premiere their first of seven new Christmas TV movies on Saturday, Nov. 9th at 8pm(ET) entitled A Country Christmas Story--starring Dolly Parton, Brian McKnight, and Mary Kay Place.  I can't wait! 

If you also watch Lifetime Movie Network (LMN), you'll want to check out their schedules as well.  Every Thursday in November--except Thanksgiving Day (Nov. 28th)--they are running all-day marathons of older Christmas TV movies.

The newly named UP network (formerly known as Gospel Music Channel-GMC) is another place to find new Christmas TV movies as well as older favorites.  According to this press release, their Christmas programming begins Monday, Nov. 18th.  They are also premiering six new Christmas TV movies in 2013.  Their first new Christmas TV movie is 3 Day Christmas starring George Newbern and Corbin Bernsen debuting Friday Nov. 22nd, at 9pm(ET).  I'm also excited to say that their press release reveals they will be re-airing one of my all-time favorite Christmas TV movies, 1971's The Homecoming: A Christmas Story--the movie that sparked the TV series The Waltons.

Another major source of holiday entertainment is ABC Family channel and their 25 Days of Christmas scheduling (December holiday programming) as well as their Countdown to 25 Days of Christmas (November holiday programming).  Remember the downloadable 25 Days of Christmas schedule is only the highlights!  They actually air more programming during the non-listed hours.  (I always check the network's on-line TV listings to know what they are broadcasting 24 hours a day).  ABC Family Channel will debut two new Christmas TV movies this season.  The first debut is Tuesday Nov. 26th at 7pm(ET) entitled Christmas Bounty starring Mike “the Miz” Mizanin from the WWE.  The Countdown to the 25 Days of Christmas begins Wednesday, Nov. 20th.

This year will also bring a new Christmas TV movie from the Hallmark Hall of Fame, the critically-acclaimed TV movie series.  On December 1st at 9pm(ET), the ABC network will air Christmas in Conway starring Andy Garcia, Mandy Moore, and Mary Louise Parker.

I also expect to see holiday listings eventually released by Ion network.  According to a third party press releases, Ion is premiering five new Christmas TV movies in 2013 to air alongside their growing number of Christmas movies from past years. 

Hold on to your hats, this year is proving to be another bumper year for Christmas movie premieres. 


  1. Holy cow, that is a lot of new movies in addition to all the older offerings! In a few years, there is going to be enough to air a different movie every day - heck every two hours - from Halloween to Christmas! Not that I am complaining. :)

    1. Every year the networks get more viewers for their Christmas TV movies. I think we'll continue to see expanding listings.

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