Beards, Novembeard, and Kurt Russell as Santa Claus

November of course means Novembeard–where participants grow beards to raise awareness of men’s health issues.  Or, just because beards are cool and it’s become an annual tradition.  So who better to celebrate than the actor who has made a beard work for him throughout his career?  That would be Kurt Russell.  As Snake Plisskin in Escape from New York.  As MacReady in The Thing.  As Jack Burton in Big Trouble in Little China (stubble counts).  (Russell only had a moustache in Tombstone so we’ll skip that one).  As the sheriff in Bone Tomahawk.  As John Ruth in The Hateful Eight.  As Ego in Guardians of the Galaxy, Vol. 2.  Even his son Wyatt knows how to sport a cool beard–He wore won this year as the star of Lodge 49.  So what’s left for the guy with the cool beard to take on next?  How about playing the guy with the best beard of all time?  That’s Santa Claus, of course.

The best part?  In this trailer for Netflix’s new The Christmas Chronicles, Russell isn’t playing just another “Bad Santa” role.  Sure, it looks like a traditional family Christmas show, but Russell revealing how cool Santa is (and always has been) and lines that sound like they were written for Jack Burton?  That’s an inspired choice.

He knows when you’ve been bad or good, so you’d better clean up your act right now.

The movie stars Benji star Darby Camp and The Babysitter’s Judah Lewis as kids who want to film Santa in action.  Look for co-stars Kimberly Williams-Paisley (Father of the Bride, Darrow & Darrow) as their mom, plus Lamorne Morris (New Girl, The Guild) and Martin Roach (Kick-Ass 2, The Shape of Water). 

Check out this new trailer for The Christmas Chronicles:

They’ve pulled out all the stops for this one.  Christophe Beck (Ant-Man, The Muppets, Frozen) composed the music.  Production design is by the Oscar-winning Paul Austerberry (The Shape of Water, Assault on Precinct 13).  The new Santa suit comes from Oscar-nominated costume designer Luis Sequeira (The Shape of Water).  And that beard is courtesy of makeup artists Stephanie Ingram (Crimson Peak, Total Recall) and Sondra Treilhard (The Thing, Pacific Rim, The incredible Hulk).

The film is a bit of a family affair behind the scenes.  The father of the kids who star in the story is played by Kurt Russell’s stepson Oliver, Goldie Hawn’s son from a prior marriage who Kurt raised since Oliver was seven years old (and actress Kate Hudson’s brother).

Look for The Christmas Chronicles premiering on Netflix, November 22, 2018.

C.J. Bunce

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