It's the most wonderful time of the year, isn't it? The Christmas TV
movies have already begun airing, Christmas music is playing on local
radio stations, the days are growing shorter, and the air outside is
viewing options for Christmas movies and specials during November
and December each year are overwhelming--even for me. Last year, I counted close to 500 new Christmas and New Year's TV programs and movies released and this year is already well beyond last year's numbers. Let
me help you
with the details of where to find the best holiday programming for 2022.
This is not an exhaustive list and new information is still
being released. However, this is where you will find the majority of new
holiday programming airing this year.
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For many holiday movie fans, the Hallmark Channel is the
first name in Christmas TV movies. This year alone, Hallmark Channel and Hallmark Movies & Mysteries are debuting 40 new
Christmas TV movies, alongside many previously released classics from their archives. If you
didn't already know, the movie marathon has already begun--Hallmark started
Friday, October 21th--and continues all day and all night through the
of December. Hallmark typically debuts their new holiday movies on Friday, Saturday
nights. Hallmark Movies & Mysteries' new movies debut this year on Saturday nights.
If you don't have cable TV anymore, don't fret--Hallmark Christmas movies are now streaming on Peacock.
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Lifetime is debuting 26 new Christmas TV movies in 2022 as well. Those new movies typically debut on Thursdays, Fridays, Saturdays, and Sundays each week until Christmas. I'm excited to see the ones with celebrities in them--such as Santa Bootcamp with Rita Moreno, and A New Orleans Noel with singer Patti LaBelle.
Click HERE to download your own Lifetime movie schedule.
HERE is a link to Lifetime's website with more info about their movies this year.
Wow! Netflix has the Christmas content. HERE's a link for listings of their holiday programs. Two I'm most excited about are The Noel Diary starring Justin Hartley from NBC's This is Us, and the musical animated movie Scrooge: A Christmas Carol. So far Netflix's animated Christmas movies have been top notch.
BET and their streaming platform BET+ are committed to Christmas TV movies again this year. After last year's huge success, they are debuting 10 new Christmas movies in 2022. Click HERE for a list of those movies.
As usual UpTV is also debuting a full schedule of Christmas TV movies too. Click HERE for a link to the cable channel's website with more info about their Christmas TV movies.
After last year's debut of one Christmas movie, this year Discovery+ has committed to four new Christmas movies. I liked last year's "Candy Coated Christmas" with a small role in it for Ree Drummond. So this year I'm excited to see what else they come up with. If you don't already know, Discovery+ has lots and lots of holiday content. From gingerbread competitions to cookie baking challenges to the annual "White House Christmas" specials, there's programming for everyone on that platform.
Last year CBS returned to airing Christmas movies and this year they are premiering three new ones. Click HERE for more on those. CBS has several specials they're airing too--I love the annual "National Christmas Tree Lighting" concert from Washington DC (Dec. 11th this year) and "Mariah Carey's Merry Christmas to All" on Dec. 20th is certainly a must-see event. So much good stuff.
NBC's "Christmas in Rockefeller Center" is another annual treat. It's always the first Wednesday after Thanksgiving--so this year it airs on Nov. 30th. The annual Saturday Night Live Christmas clip show is Dec. 14th, and Dolly Parton has a new one--"Dolly Parton's Magic Mountain Christmas" special is Dec. 1st. She's an American treasure. The 1966 animated classic "How the Grinch Stole Christmas" is airing on NBC on Dec. 23. Want to watch "Mr. Magoo's Christmas Carol" to honor its 60th birthday this year? It's on Peacock streaming service this season. You're welcome.
ABC has quite the line-up. Click HERE for their full holiday listings. "CMA Country Christmas" the annual country music holiday concert airs on Dec. 8th this year on ABC. Diane Sawyer is doing a retrospective on the holiday movie "Love Actually" on Nov. 29th, there's a new animated special "Mickey Saves Christmas" on Nov. 27th, and The Backstreet Boys have their holiday special coming Dec. 14th.
For Disney+ subscribers, the most exciting new programming is the sequel to the 1990s franchise "The Santa Clause." On Nov. 16th, Tim Allen stars in the follow-up "The Santa Clauses" for viewers looking to catch up with the characters. Disney+ is also releasing "The Guardians of the Galaxy Holiday Special" starting Nov. 25th. I'm also super excited for "The Hip Hop Nutcracker"--this should be fun. Disney+ also has an unedited version of "The Muppet Christmas Carol" they are streaming. Quite frankly, THIS is some of the biggest news this season for folks like us!
Over on HBO Max, the streaming service will debut "A Christmas Story Christmas" on Nov. 17th that has everyone excited. Peter Billingsley all grown up now returning as Ralphie Parker!? Yes-please.
And, starting on Nov. 18th, you can watch "Spirited"--a musical Christmas story with Will Ferrell and Ryan Reynolds on AppleTV+. This streamer is also the only place you'll be able to watch the 1965 animated classic "A Charlie Brown Christmas" this year--unless you own it on physical media.
Stay close to my social media links for more announcements about
fantastic holiday programming. If you'd like reminders of the new
Christmas TV movie debuts and other
exciting holiday TV programming, don't forget to follow my Facebook
page Tis The Season TV and/or my tweets at @TisTheSeasonTV. I'm now on TikTok as well--also under the name Tis the Season TV.
Where on the metaphorical television dial do you watch your favorite Christmas movies and specials? Feel free to share in the comments below.
Joanna Wilson is a TV researcher and book author specializing
in Christmas entertainment. More about the TV programs mentioned on this website can
be found in her book "Tis the Season TV: the Encyclopedia of Christmas-themed Episodes, Specials, and Made-for-TV Movies." Her latest book "Triple Dog Dare:
Watching--& Surviving--the 24-Hour Marathon of A Christmas Story"
was released in 2016. She is currently updating and expanding the
encyclopedia for a 2023 release. Her books can be found at the publisher's website:
*Support this website and its research by purchasing the books at 1701 press.com