In a career spanning decades, and many different eras of Hollywood, actor Kurt Russell has played a variety of roles, from action to drama, to comedy. But age does not seem to have dimmed Russell's dedication to his craft, even when the role does not really appear to need that kind of dedication. In an interview with ComicBook.com, filmmaker Chris Columbus revealed that Russell went full-on method actor while preparing to play Santa Claus in their new movie, Netflix's The Christmas Chronicles 2, complete with crafting a detailed-backstory for the actor's version of Saint Nick.
"What's incredible about it is [Russell] truly treats it like method acting. I don't know if I told you, but he wrote 200 pages of the backstory of Santa Claus. About the mythology, about how he met Mrs. Claus. We couldn't use [all of it]. And that is his level of commitment. If you talk with him, he's very serious about this. He approaches it as if he were a method actor playing Santa Claus. And that's what got me so excited about the first movie, is that you're given that as a director and you've got to run with it. You've got to be like, 'This is a gift to be able to work with a guy who is so committed to his role.'"
The idea that you could employ method-acting while playing the role of a magical, immortal being who employs an army of elves and distributes presents around the world in a single night using flying reindeers is... strange, to say the least. But it seems, despite the fantastical nature of the character, Kurt Russell was determined to do extensive homework in order to find the emotional core of Santa through his backstory.
The original movie The Christmas Chronicles that was released in 2018 featured Russell as a distinctly more handsome and dashing take on jolly old Father Christmas. After a run-in with a couple of kids leads to Russell's Santa losing his sleigh and his magical aids, the three embark on a breathless journey across town in a quest to retrieve the items and bring back the spirit of Christmas to the people. Despite mixed reviews, the movie managed to gain widespread popularity online.
The sequel, which is set to debut on Netflix on November 25, sees Santa pairing up with the children from the previous movie as well as Mrs. Claus (Goldie Hawn) and the elves, to stop a new troublemaker from canceling Christmas forever. With the current doldrums that the world finds itself in, and people finding it more and more difficult to travel home for Christmas, a feel-good movie like The Christmas Chronicles 2 will hopefully help alleviate some of the negativity amongst audiences and celebrate the spirit of the holiday.
Directed by Chris Columbus, based on a script by Columbus, Matt Lieberman, and Axel Gugenreedburg, The Christmas Chronicles 2 features a lead cast consisting of Kurt Russell, Goldie Hawn, Judah Lewis, Darby Camp, Kimberly Williams-Paisley, Julian Dennison, and Tyrese Gibson. This news comes from ComicBook.com.