Santa Who?

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Santa Who?
Region 2 DVD Cover
Written byDebra Frank
Steve L. Hayes
Directed by William Dear
Starring Leslie Nielsen
Steven Eckholdt
Robyn Lively
Music by Joel McNeely
Country of originUnited States
Original languageEnglish
ProducerFrank Siracusa
CinematographyDerick V. Underschultz
Editor Edgar Burcksen
Running time88 minutes
Production companiesGleneagle Productions
Hearst Entertainment
Distributor Buena Vista Television (USA)
Hearst Entertainment (Non-USA)
Original release
  • November 19, 2000 (2000-11-19)(U.S.)
  • December 3, 2000 (2000-12-03)(UK)

Santa Who? is a 2000 American made-for-television fantasy-comedy film starring Leslie Nielsen and directed by William Dear. The plot centers on Santa Claus developing a case of amnesia (specifically source amnesia) right before Christmas. As of 2009, it is shown in the 25 Days of Christmas programming block on ABC Family. [1]



The film starts with Santa feeling ill and going out for fresh air on a flight in his sleigh. Because of bad weather, he falls out and lands in Los Angeles. After the fall, he is unable to remember who he is. An afraid-of-commitment TV news reporter finds him and uses him on TV to get audience while vowing them to find his family. In the meantime, Santa works in a mall.

The TV newsreporter's girlfriend's son repeatedly tries to convince the adults that he is the real Santa Claus, which the adults refuse to believe.

Santa still remembers certain details about Christmas but is unable to remember how he knows them, as typically happens with source amnesia. All the while, Santa's elves are looking for him. Near the end, a couple thinks it could be their grandfather who has grown a beard, and take him with them. Instead, when it is proved he is Santa, the reporter regains his faith in Christmas and gains a family.


Leslie Nielsen Santa Claus
Steven Eckholdt Peter Albright
Robyn Lively Claire Dreyer
Max Morrow Zack Dreyer
Aron Tager Grandpa
Tommy Davidson Max the Elf
Darren FrostRupert the Elf
Karen LeBlanc Lenny the Camera Person
R.D. Reid Grady
Ted Atherton George, Ch. 12 Manager
Stewart ArnottLusby, Claire's Boss
Carol LempertEllen, Claire's Secretary
Roger ClownRay Engles
Elizabeth BrownNancy Engles
Laura DeCarteretSister Greta
Richard FitzpatrickDetective Lohenry


Christopher Null of gave Santa Who? 2 out of 5 stars. [2] Perry Seibert of AllMovie gave the film 3 stars out of 5. [3]

Laura Fries of Variety wrote "Santa Who?, an original "Wonderful World of Disney" film, does its best to imitate the great holiday classics, but in the end it's about as rewarding as a lump of coal in your stocking". [1] Aliya Whiteley of Den of Geek called Santa Who? "a classic". [4]

Announced Remake

On July 2021, Lionsgate, who holds international rights to this film as a result of their ownership of the Hearst Entertainment library, told Deadline that they planned to remake this film, alongside The Babysitter's Seduction, Sex, Lies, & Obsession , Blue Valley Songbird , Sex & Mrs. X , A Different Kind of Christmas, and over 100 Hearst titles with MarVista Entertainment, which will work with Lionsgate in distributing these films. [5] Aside from talking about targeting the tech-savvy audiences with these films, both studios are yet to release further information about these remakes, which they've planned to release to an undetermined streaming service. [6]

See also


  1. 1 2 Fries, Laura (November 16, 2000). "Santa Who?". Variety .
  2. Null, Christopher (2001). "Santa Who? Movie Review, DVD Release". Archived from the original on August 1, 2007. Retrieved December 16, 2014.
  3. Seibert, Perry. "Santa Who? (2000)". AllMovie . Retrieved August 15, 2021.
  4. Whiteley, Aliya (December 22, 2015). "Less-known Christmas movies: Santa Who?". Den of Geek . Retrieved August 15, 2021.
  5. White, Peter (2021-07-09). "Are TV Movies Back? Lionsgate & MarVista Strike Deal To Remake Classic MOWs Including Keri Russell's 'The Babysitter's Seduction'". Deadline. Retrieved 2021-08-27.
  6. "'The Babysitter's Seduction' Among TV Movies Getting a Remake in Lionsgate / MarVista Deal". Movieweb. 2021-07-13. Retrieved 2021-08-27.