Lifetime has announced 30 new Christmas movies for its 2020 holiday schedule.
This year's movies will include the network's first-ever LGBTQ+-centered romance.
Stars of the film's in Lifetime's holiday fleet include Betty White, Kelly Rowland, Mario Lopez and Melissa Joan Hart, while Tiffany Haddish is executive producing one project.
'Tis (almost) the season to don those fuzzy Santa socks and matching family pajamas and cuddle up for a Christmas movie marathon. Lifetime's 2020 holiday film slate includes 30 brand new movies to choose from. This year's schedule will feature performances from Kelly Rowland, Mario Lopez, Jason Priestley, Melissa Joan Hart, and Ali Stoker, along with a movie produced by Tiffany Haddish.
Most notably is The Christmas Set Up, which will be the first Lifetime holiday movie to focus on an LGBTQ+ romance. LGBTQ+ Christmas releases are becoming increasingly common, though the legacy networks have been slow to catch up. Lifetime's competitor Hallmark Channel has received significant criticism for its lack of representation. Its initial lineup of 2020 Christmas movies did not feature any queer leads, prompting the network to announce plans to "include LGBTQ+ characters, actors, and storylines" in its crop of holiday films.
Casting for The Christmas Setup has been announced, and the movie stars real-life married couple Blake Lee, who you may have seen in Mixology and Parks and Rec and Ben Lewis, known for his role on Arrow. It also features Fran Drescher and Ellen Wong.
✨ ✨We are welcoming @TiffanyHaddish as an Executive Producer on the movie #ChristmasUnwrapped. We are excited to announce @AliStroker in #ChristmasEverAfter and @Jason_Priestley in #DearChristmas! ✨ pic.twitter.com/RTTzBRrADB
— Lifetime (@lifetimetv) August 3, 2020
The Christmas Set Up tells the story of a New York corporate lawyer who returns to Milwaukee for the holidays, as his mother attempts to play matchmaker for him and his high school crush, a successful tech industry member. The film is written by Michael J. Murray, who has penned many other Christmas projects including Christmas Around the Corner and Christmas 9 to 5, both of which were Lifetime releases.
"The Christmas Set Up" is about New York corporate lawyer Hugo, who falls for his high school friend and secret crush Patrick during the holidays, after Hugo's mom, Kate, plays matchmaker. https://t.co/8mcrJUN6Ek
— USA TODAY (@USATODAY) August 4, 2020
Another noteworthy step Lifetime is taking is releasing A Sugar & Spice Holiday, a film directed by Jennifer Liao that is the network's first holiday movie about a Chinese-American family. Sugar & Spice focuses on an architect who comes back to her hometown in Maine and winds up being pushed to participate in a local gingerbread house-making competition, teaming up with a high school pal in the process. The film stars Jacky Lai, Tony Giroux, and Tzi Ma.
Tiffany Haddish is producing Christmas Unwrapped, which features a young reporter investigating a prominent local man who claims his holiday gifts are straight from Santa Claus
Below is the information we have so far about Lifetime's Christmas movies, but check back often for updates as more release dates and titles are announced in September.
Lifetime's Christmas movies 2020 schedule, so far:
Christmas on Ice
Release: 10/23 at 8:00 p.m. EST
Starring: Abigail Klein, Ryan Cooper, Caroline Portu, Will Lyman, and Meara Mahoney Gross
Release: 10/24 at 8:00 p.m. EST
Stars: Amber Stevens West, Marco Grazzini, and Cheryl Ladd
Release: 10/25 at 8:000 p.m. EST
Stars: Chelsea Hobbs, Christopher Russell, Matthew Anderson, and Jill Morrison
Christmas Ever After
Stars: Ali Stoker and Daniel DiTomasso
Stars: Melissa Joan Hart, Jason Priestley, Robin Givens, Ed Begley Jr and Faith Prince
A Sugar & Spice Holiday
Stars: Jacky Lai, Tony Giroux, Tzi Ma
The Christmas Set Up
Stars: Ben Lewis, Blake Lee, Fran Drescher, Ellen Wong
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