My Hallmark Christmas movie pitches

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O P I N I O N


graziano“We’re going to be vomiting Christmas today,” my wife said as I was still rubbing the sleep from my eyes after a late Thanksgiving night. “You might want to go out.”

I nodded. “I’ll see if Mikey will meet me at the bar.”

After close to 20 years of marriage, Liz knows me and was doing me a solid.

Of course, she and my 17-year-old daughter would not be literally purging sugar cookies, yuletide stockings and gingerbread-scented candles from their bodies; instead, they were going to decorate our house with white lights, holly, mistletoe and a wooden ornament that reads “Merry.”

While decorating the house, they would blast Christmas music—I’m currently considering legal action against Mariah Carey—then spend the rest of the day watching the abject inanity of Christmas movies on The Hallmark Channel, which recycles the same essential plot from November until New Year’s Eve with myriad arrays of three-dimensional characters.

Stop me if you heard this one.

The main character is stranded in some podunk Midwestern/Southern town for Christmas where they meet some “awe-shucks” townie and fall in love and realize how much they’ve missed the Christmas joy in their cold black hearts until said townie showed them the err of hedonistic ways through holiday love during an unexpected snowstorm on Christmas Eve. They kiss in front of a Christmas tree in town square. The end.

So I’ve decided that writing one of these screenplays beats the hell out of real work so I’ve started working on Christmas movie pitches for potential Hallmark movie producers.

Right now, I have three solid concepts and working titles. Here goes the pitch.


“The Suboxone Santa Claus”

Screenplay by Nate Graziano

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Tad Rocco is an aged rock star in New York City whose late-90s Ska band once landed a single in the Billboard Top 50. But Tad has succumbed to hard times and heroin addiction, and Tad’s eviction from his flat in Brooklyn by a morally repugnant landlord (played by Donald J. Trump) is imminent. Tad is then forced to return to his parents’ house in Snow City, Ill., for Christmas. While dope-sick, Tad meets Erica White, the daughter of an independent bookstore owner, who guides Tad back to health with the help of the Christmas spirit. Tad covers Mariah Carey’s “All I Want for Christmas Is You” at the town’s holiday festival during a blizzard on Christmas Eve where donations save the bookstore. The song goes viral, and Tad’s career is revitalized. He and Erica kiss for the first time in front of a Christmas tree in the town square. The end.


“Stilettos in the Stocking”

Screenplay by Nate Graziano

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Tiffany White is an exotic dancer in Dorchester, Mass., where she’s lived since being kicked out of M.I.T. for a bogus midterm cheating scandal, propagated by a popular professor after Tiffany rejected his advances. After refusing to perform in an adult film, which results in a break-up with her nefarious boyfriend/strip club owner Chip Buttafucco, Tiffany leaves Boston and returns to her hometown of Freedom Rules, Miss., for Christmas with her estranged family. While there, she meets Alex Wright, an English teacher at the local high school and director of Freedom Rules High School’s version of “A Christmas Carol.” Chip travels through a snowstorm to find Tiffany on Christmas Eve, but Alex’s AP students chase him out of town with Nerf guns. Tiffany steps in last minute to play Martha Cratchit on Opening Night. Mariah Carey guest stars as The Ghost of Christmas Past.

Fini.


“The Holiday Bidet”

Screenplay by Nate Graziano

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After walking in on her fiancée Tad Rocco having an affair with an exotic dancer, Jill White leaves her New York City apartment on Christmas Eve and drives to her parents’ house in Vanilla, Ind. While battling a formidable bout of IBS brought on and exacerbated by the break-up—this Hallmark movie is brought to you by Alosetron; ask your doctor if Alosetron is right for you—Jill reconnects with Ashton Pearl, her former high school sweetheart, at Vanilla’s Christmas Eve line-dancing festival, hosted by Mariah Carey. Jill and Ashton fall in love—blah blah, blah. It snows, and they kiss. The end.

Granted, by the time you’re reading this, I’ll likely be on a plane to Los Angeles but I have enjoyed my time as a layman in New Hampshire and hope everyone has a nice holiday season.

Or my movie ideas could be turned down, and I might be here—in my own Christmas Hell—listening to Mariah Carey while my wife and daughter dance and sing, sprinkling the house with tinsel and deciding on the best time for the whole family to watch “A Year Without a Santa Claus” together, playfully debating whether Snow Miser or Heat Miser’s song is preferable.

I think I know where this is trending.

CUT TO:

EXT. TOWN SQUARE-NIGHT.

The end.


 

About this Author

Nathan Graziano

Nathan Graziano lives in Manchester with his wife and kids. He's the author of nine collections of fiction and poetry. His most recent book, Born on Good Friday was published by Roadside Press in 2023. He's a high school teacher and freelance writer, and in his free time, he writes bios about himself in the third person. For more information, visit his website: http://www.nathangraziano.com