‘Elf’ Gets an Animated Musical Christmas Special Starring Jim Parsons

By October 24, 2014
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If the 24-hour marathon of Jon Favreau’s modern holiday favorite Elf on USA isn’t enough Christmas fun, NBC is bringing back Buddy the Elf for a new animated TV special in December. But Will Ferrell won’t be back to reprise the role.

EW reports the network has planned a one-hour, stop-motion animated Christmas special called “Elf: Buddy’s Musical Christmas,” and in case you haven’t guessed by the title, it’s a musical special that will basically tell the same story of the film, following follow Buddy’s exploits as he travels to New York City in search of the father he never knew.

However, this adaptation will borrow elements from the Broadway musical as well, including the songs “Happy All the Time,” “A Christmas Song,” and “Nobody Cares About Santa Claus.” If you weren’t aware of the Broadway adaptation of Elf, check out a preview right here:

NBC has set “The Big Bang Theory” star Jim Parsons to voice the lead role in Farrell’s place. In fact, only one cast member from the film is involved with the animated special, and that’s Ed Asner as the voice of Santa Claus, narrating the story. Here’s a first look at the holiday special:

Elf: Buddy's Musical Christmas

The rest of the cast includes Mark Hamill (probably hoping to erase the memory of the Star Wars Holiday Special from 1978), Fred Armisen, Jay Leno, Matt Lauer, Gilbert Gottfried, Kate Micucci, Rachael MacFarlane, Max Charles, and Steve Higgins. We wonder if NBC could have shoehorned anymore of their staple TV stars into the special for more synergy.

It’s pretty hard to penetrate the zeitgeist of holiday specials when most people only like to revisit classic Christmas specials like “A Charlie Brown Christmas” or “Rudolph The Red-Nosed Reindeer.” But with ties to a beloved film like Elf, maybe there’s a chance this could become a holiday staple to enjoy each year. If not, we’ll just pop in our copy of Elf with Will Ferrell and smile. Because smiling is our favorite.

“Elf: Buddy’s Musical Christmas” airs on NBC on December 16th at 8pm ET/PT.

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Ethan Anderton
Some of his favorite films include Ghostbusters, The Empire Strikes Back and Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind, while his favorite TV series include LOST, Mad Men, 30 Rock, Parks & Recreation, Arrested Development and Saturday Night Live.