Christmas might not be until December, but some networks are slapping on their mittens and gearing up for the holiday season as early as October.
Families often find themselves gathered around the TV binging some of Hallmark or Lifetime’s latest winter holiday-themed films, and this year is no exception. With people around the country encouraged to stay indoors and avoid crowded locations, Variety breaks down a list of feel-good movies to tune into this year.
As part of Lifetime’s “It’s a Wonderful Lifetime” holiday movie slate, the channel will premiere 30 original TV movies beginning Oct. 23 and running through mid-December. In its efforts to diversify the stories it showcases, Lifetime said it worked with GLAAD and CAPE (Coalition of Asian Pacifics in Entertainment) for its first-ever LGBTQ-led film “The Christmas Setup” and “A Sugar & Spice Holiday” centering on an Asian American family.
Hallmark also has about 40 films slated to debut, and HBO Max is releasing a special program later this year, featuring performances by Carrie Underwood for her new holiday album, “The Gift.”
More films will be added to the list as networks announce them. But for now, read the full list of holiday movies, in order by air date, below.
“Christmas on Ice” (Oct. 23, Lifetime) – Abigail Klein and Ryan Cooper star in the film about a former figure skating hopeful and a former professional hockey player who work to stop the Mayor (Will Lyman) from closing the skating rink. It is written and directed by John Stimpson.
“Christmas Unwrapped” (Oct. 24, Lifetime) – A reporter named Charity (Amber Stevens West) investigates a man named Erik Gallagher (Marco Grazzini) in the film executive produced by Tiffany Haddish. Charity shows interest in Erik’s claims that the gifts he gives were provided by Santa Claus.
“Jingle Bell Bride” (Oct. 24, Hallmark) – Julie Gonzalo and Ronnie Rowe Jr. star in the film about a wedding planner tracking down a special flower in Alaska for her clients. She soon connects to the small town she’s visiting and the man who helps her.
“Christmas Tree Lane” (Oct. 24, Hallmark) – Alicia Witt plays Meg, a music store owner leading an effort to protect a shopping area named Christmas Tree Lane from being destroyed for a new project. The situation gets complicated when she learns that the man she likes (Andrew Walker) has connections with the developer.
“Forever Christmas” (Oct. 25, Lifetime) – A reality TV producer (Chelsea Hobbs) works on a show about a man (Christopher Russell) who celebrates Christmas every day of the year, slowly falling for the subject of her new project. The script is written by Gary Goldstein, and the film is directed by Christie Will Wolf.
“Chateau Christmas” (Oct. 25, Hallmark) – A pianist named Margot (Merritt Patterson) reunites with her ex (Luke Macfarlane) when she visits her family for the holidays. During the trip, she finds her musical passion again.
“Deliver by Christmas” (Oct. 25, Hallmark) – Eion Bailey is a widower named Josh who brings his son to a new town when they move. He stars alongside Alvina August, who plays a bakery owner named Molly. The plot centers around their connection, but Molly is also falling for a client she has yet to meet in person.
“A Crafty Christmas Romance” (Oct. 30, Lifetime) – The investigation into a valuable coin and a letter from Santa left in an old copy of “A Christmas Carol” drives the film’s plot — and the romance between characters Mandy (Nicola Posener) and Jonah (Bradford B. Johnson).
“Candy Cane Christmas” (Oct. 31, Lifetime) – When a neighborhood usually filled with Christmas decorations decides not to put on their annual Candy Cane Lane, a disappointed Phoebe (Beverley Mitchell) searches for new traditions. In the film directed by Adrian Langley and written by Emily Golden, Mitchell’s character falls for a man played by Mark Ghanimé.
“Christmas with the Darlings” (Oct. 31, Hallmark) – The film stars Katrina Law and Carlo Marks as an assistant and her boss’ brother. The two come together when Law’s character offers to help the brother of her boss care for his nieces and nephew during the Christmas season.
“Cranberry Christmas” (Oct. 31, Hallmark) – Nikki DeLoach and Benjamin Ayres star as a separated couple who must pretend their marriage is perfectly fine to promote their business and their town’s Christmas festival on national television.
“The Christmas Aunt” (Nov. 1, Lifetime) – Childhood best friends reconnect when Rebecca Miller (Keshia Knight Pulliam) returns to their hometown to care for her niece and nephew. She revives the kids’ Christmas faith while growing a newfound view of best friend Drew (Jarod Joseph) in the process.
“One Royal Holiday” (Nov. 1, Hallmark) – During a heavy blizzard, a woman (Laura Osnes) offers shelter to a mother and son (Victoria Clark and Aaron Tveit), only to discover they are the Royal Family of Galwick. She shows the prince her traditional Christmas celebrations as he learns to be true to himself.
“Holly & Ivy” (Nov. 1, Hallmark) – Starring Janel Parrish (“Pretty Little Liars”), Jeremy Jordan (“Supergirl”) and Marisol Nichols (“Riverdale”), the film tells the story of Melody (Parrish) who promises her neighbor Nina (Nichols) that she will look after her children Holly and Ivy following the return of her illness. To do so, she has to renovate her home with the help of contractor Adam (Jordan).
“The Christmas Yule Blog” (Nov. 6, Lifetime) – A social media travel writer (Sara Canning) meets a music teacher (Zak Santiago) while covering a holiday parade in New Mexico. She falls in love with more than just Christmas as the teacher shows her different traditions from her own.
“A Welcome Home Christmas” (Nov. 7, Lifetime) – Jana Kramer and Brandon Quinn lead the film, which follows a woman paired with an Army veteran to promote an Army toy drive ahead of the Officer’s Christmas Ball. The movie, directed by Brian Herzlinger and written by T. Booker James, will also air again on Nov. 11 for Veteran’s Day.
“Never Kiss a Man in a Christmas Sweater” (Nov. 7, Hallmark) – Single mother Maggie (Ashley Williams) is alone during the holiday season until Lucas (Niall Matter), an unexpected houseguest, crashes into her life. Through their growing bond, they learn how to get through Christmas.
“The Christmas Ring” (Nov. 7, Hallmark) – A reporter (Nazneen Contractor) takes interest in an old engagement ring and searches for the story behind it. The original owner’s grandson (David Alpay) helps her uncover his grandparents’ legacy.
“A Very Charming Christmas Town” (Nov. 8, Lifetime) – For a holiday vlog, Aubrey Lang (Natalie Hall) goes to the “Most Christmassy Town in the USA” and meets the man assigned to show her around, a chocolate shop owner named Sawyer Larsen (Jon Prescott). Its executive producers are Vanessa Shapiro and Lars Lindstrom.
“On the 12th Date of Christmas” (Nov. 8, Hallmark) – Mallory Jansen and Tyler Hynes play two game designers with seemingly opposing personalities. The two team up, however, to formulate a romantic “12 Days of Christmas” scavenger hunt through the city.
“The Christmas Bow” (Nov. 8, Hallmark) – A violinist (Lucia Micarelli) suffers an accident that forces her to temporarily put her goals to the side. Her family friend (Michael Rady) helps her with the healing process as she also finds love during the Christmas season.
“Christmas on the Vine” (Nov. 13, Lifetime) – A young marketing executive (Julianna Guill) cultivates a relationship with her client (Jon Corr), the owner of a winery, while working to bring Christmas spirit and local wine back to his town.
“Christmas on Wheels” (Nov. 14, Lifetime) – In the film directed by Marita Grabiak, Ashley (Tiya Sircar) finds out her uncle sold her mother’s vintage convertible and recruits her uncle’s attorney (Michael Xavier) to help her reclaim and restore it.
“Christmas in Vienna” (Nov. 14, Hallmark) – A concert violinist (Sarah Drew) indifferent to her craft travels to Vienna for a performance. While there, she finds new inspiration and romance. The film also stars Brennan Elliott (“Crossword Mysteries”).
“Meet Me at Christmas” (working title) (Nov. 14, Hallmark) – Catherine Bell plays the mother of a groom and Mark Deklin stars as the uncle of the bride. They must work together to plan their relatives’ wedding after the original wedding planner quits.
“The Christmas Edition” (Nov. 15, Lifetime) – Carly Hughes stars as a journalist who gets the chance to run a newspaper in Alaska, jump-starting both the paper’s profits and her budding romance with the former owner’s son, played by Rob Mayes.
“A Timeless Christmas” (Nov. 15, Hallmark) – Charles Whitley (Ryan Paevey) journeys more than a century in the future to 2020 where he encounters Megan Turner (Erin Cahill), a tour guide at his historic mansion, and experiences a modern Christmas.
“The Christmas Doctor” (Nov. 15, Hallmark) – Holly Robinson Peete stars as Alicia Wright, a doctor working an assignment away from home. Adrian Holmes plays a man tracking her down to share important revelations with her before Christmas.
“A Taste of Christmas” (Nov. 20, Lifetime) – An optimistic Natalie (Anni Krueger) convinces a pessimistic chef named Stefano (Gilles Marini) to help her open her sister Francesca’s (Nia Vardalos) Italian restaurant in time for its original Christmas Eve launch. The movie is executive produced by Omar Roma.
“Feliz NaviDAD” (Nov. 21, Lifetime) – Mario Lopez stars in and executive produces the film, which centers on a single father who is also a high school principal. His daughter (Paulina Chavez) and sister (Marycarmen Lopez) match him with a musician (AnnaLynne McCord) to bring back his joy. Mark Schulman also executive produces the movie.
“A Nashville Christmas Carol” (Nov. 21, Hallmark) – Workaholic TV producer Vivienne Wake (Jessy Schram), who never lets her personal life interfere with work, is set to accept a job in Los Angeles when the return of her childhood sweetheart Gavin Chase (Wes Brown), who is managing her Christmas special’s headliner (Sara Evans), prompts a visit from her deceased mentor Marilyn (Wynonna Judd). Marilyn, who warns Vivienne of a dark future, enlists the help of the Spirit of Christmas Past (Kix Brooks) and Spirit of Christmas Present (Kimberly Williams-Paisley) to help Vivienne take control of her life. The movie also stars singer-songwriter RaeLynn.
“A Little Christmas Charm” (working title) (Nov. 21/Hallmark) – A charm bracelet becomes the object of interest in this upcoming film. A jewelry designer (Ashley Greene) and an investigative reporter (Brendan Penny) team up to find the owner of the lost bracelet with the goal of returning it before Christmas.
“Dolly Parton’s Christmas on the Square” (Nov. 22, Netflix) – Dolly Parton plays an angel that visits Regina Fuller (Christine Baranski), a bitter woman who owns the town of Fullerville. Through the angel, Regina learns to let kindness and the Christmas spirit back into her heart. The musical film also includes 14 songs by Parton, including from her upcoming album “A Holly Dolly Christmas.”
“Homemade Christmas” (Nov. 22, Lifetime) – Michelle Argyris plays the lead, a woman who serves as a freelance assistant around the holidays. Her latest task for a Christmas party forced her to choose between two men. It also stars Travis Nelson.
“The Christmas House” (Nov. 22, Hallmark) – Parents Phylis (Sharon Lawrence) and Bill (Treat Williams) summon their grown sons, TV star Mike (Robert Buckley) and Brandon Mitchell (Jonathan Bennett), home for the holiday season in hopes of bringing the family together and working through personal issues. While Mike reconnects with his high school sweetheart Andi (Ana Ayora), Brandon and his husband Jake (Brad Harder) impatiently await a call about the adoption of their first child.
“The Angel Tree” (Nov. 22, Hallmark) – Wishes placed upon an “Angel Tree” are being granted by an unknown person. A writer (Jill Wagner) takes it upon herself to find the true identity of the generous spirit, connecting with her old friend (Lucas Bryant) in the process.
“A Christmas Tree Grows in Brooklyn” (Nov. 24, Hallmark) – A woman (Rochelle Aytes) working on the town’s annual Christmas celebration attempts to sway a man named Kevin (Mark Taylor) to offer up his spruce tree as a decoration for the event.
“A Bright and Merry Christmas” (Nov. 25, Hallmark) – Two competing television hosts (Alison Sweeney and Marc Blucas) are sent to cover a small festive town during the holiday season. While they pretend to tolerate each other to keep up appearances, they quickly grow closer together.
“Five Star Christmas” (working title) (Nov. 26, Hallmark) – Bethany Joy Lenz plays Liza, a woman who enlists her siblings and grandparents to help her father’s bed and breakfast. The group works to hopefully impress an incognito travel critic (Victor Webster), but Liza soon falls for him.
“Dear Christmas” – (Nov. 27, Lifetime) – Melissa Joan Hart plays the host of a popular podcast about holiday romances, although she’s never experienced one herself. Before the promotional tour for her new book, she journeys back home to her family where she begins to cultivate an unexpected romance with a local firefighter (Jason Priestley).
“Christmas by Starlight” (Nov. 27, Hallmark) – Annie (Kimberley Sustad), a lawyer hoping to save her family’s restaurant from demolition, forms an unlikely partnership with the heir to the development company William (Paul Campbell) slated to tear down the cafe. If she agrees to pretend to be the legal counsel for his father, who made poor decisions for the firm, the cafe will be spared.
“Merry Liddle Christmas Wedding” – (Nov. 28, Lifetime) – A sequel to last year’s “Merry Liddle Christmas,” the film follows Jacquie Liddle (Kelly Rowland) as she and Tyler (Thomas Cadrot) attempt to plan a perfect destination wedding amid family chaos and wedding planner drama.
“Christmas Waltz” (Nov. 28, Hallmark) – Avery (Lacey Chabert) copes with the cancellation of her Christmas wedding with the help of a dance instructor (Will Kemp), who helps rebuild her fairytale dreams.
“USS Christmas” (Nov. 28, Hallmark) – Jen Lilley stars as a Norfolk newspaper reporter who takes a Tiger Cruise during the Christmas season. The ship holds an attractive naval officer (Trevor Donovan) and its archive room holds a captivating mystery, both of which catch the reporter’s attention.
“People Presents: Once Upon a Main Street” – (Nov. 29, Lifetime) – When Amelia Lewis (Vanessa Lachey) and Vic Manning (Ryan McPartlin) find themselves competing for the same property, they attempt to gain favor with the seller (Patrick Duffy) by taking over his responsibilities for the annual “Battle of the Main Street” holiday competition.
“If I Only Had Christmas” (Nov. 29, Hallmark) – The upcoming film stars “Full House” actress Candace Cameron Bure and Warren Christie. Bure plays a publicist who works alongside a business owner (Christie) to help his team bring aid to a charity in need during the holiday season.
“The Christmas Listing” – (Nov. 30, Lifetime) – While vying for a badly needed listing, a tense realty owner who has lost her holiday cheer (Lexi Giovagnoli) and her business competitor (Travis Burns) find they have more in common than they thought.
“Spotlight on Christmas” – (Dec. 4, Lifetime) – After actor Olivia O’Hara (Tori Anderson) is dumped two weeks before Christmas, she returns home to avoid the press fallout, reconnecting with her family, encountering the charming Casey Rawlins (Victor Zinck Jr.) and taking ownership over her life.
“Let’s Meet Again on Christmas Eve” – (Dec. 5, Lifetime) – After a plan to meet again in two years on Christmas Eve falls through for two college sweethearts, Corinne (Kyla Pratt) and Rob (Brooks Darnell), the pair suddenly reconnects when they are both hired to coordinate a wedding just in time for the holiday.
“Christmas in Evergreen: Bells Are Ringing” (Dec. 5, Hallmark) – The fourth sequel to the “Christmas in Evergreen” movies, the film is about Michelle’s (Holly Robinson Peete) upcoming wedding and Hannah’s (Rukiya Bernard) questionable future with Elliot (Antonio Cayonne). The movie, which traces the launch of the new Evergreen museum, also stars Colin Lawrence (“Riverdale”) and Barbara Niven (“Chesapeake Shores”).
“Time for Us to Come Home for Christmas” (Dec. 5, Hallmark) – An inn, owned by Ben (Stephen Huszar), invites five different people to celebrate the holidays. Sarah (Lacey Chabert) works with the owner to uncover the mysterious reasons for the group’s invitation and learn what the connection is between the guests.
“Christmas Ever After” – (Dec. 6, Lifetime) – Tony winner Ali Stroker plays a well-known romance novelist Izzi who is facing an upcoming deadline and a case of writer’s block. While at her favorite holiday destination spot, she meets owner Matt (Daniel di Tomasso), who resembles a handsome protagonist from one of her novels, and inspiration strikes.
“Christmas She Wrote” (Dec. 6, Hallmark) – A romance writer (Danica McKellar) loses her column during the Christmas season and heads home to be with her family. But she is soon surprised when the man who cancelled her column (Dylan Neal) drops in to ask her to rejoin the publication.
“A Godwink Christmas: First Loves, Second Chances” (Dec. 6, Hallmark) – The third sequel to “A Godwink Christmas,” the movie features Pat (Sam Page) who moves to Hawaii with his sons. Through a series of happenstances, or Godwinks, he ends up stuck in traffic next to Margie (Brooke D’Orsay), his high school sweetheart.
“The Santa Squad” – (Dec. 7, Lifetime) – Allie (Rebecca Dalton), an unemployed art teacher, accepts a job with the Santa Squad to help wealthy widower Gordon (Aaron Ashmore) and his two daughters lift their holiday spirits.
“Inn Love by Christmas” – (Dec. 11, Lifetime) – When Mandy Leeds (Jonna Walsh), a successful corporate figure in the hotel industry, travels back home per her grandmother’s (Jayne Eastwood) request and to acquire a local inn for sale, she runs into her high school rival Lucas Menzino (Jesse Hutch) who is eyeing the same property.
“The Christmas Setup” – (Dec. 12, Lifetime) – When New York lawyer Hugo (Ben Lewis) heads back home to spend the holidays with his family, his mother Kate (Fran Drescher) plays matchmaker, arranging to set him up with his high school friend and crush Patrick (Blake Lee). As Hugo is up for a promotion requiring a move to London, he has to choose his next steps.
“Cross Country Christmas” (Dec. 12, Hallmark) – Lina and Max (Rachael Leigh Cook and Greyston Holt) are former classmates who both intend to go home for Christmas. A storm forces the two to work together and find ways to return home using any mode of transportation necessary.
“A Glenbrooke Christmas” (Dec. 12, Hallmark) – As Christmas approaches, heiress Jessica Morgan (Autumn Reeser) retreats to the small town of Glenbrooke for what may be her last enjoyable, relaxed holiday season. While there, she meets a charming fireman (Antonio Cupo).
“A Sugar & Spice Holiday” – (Dec. 13, Lifetime) – Up-and-coming architect Suzie (Jacky Lai) returns to her small hometown following the loss of her grandmother, a renowned baker in the community. Guilted by her parents Pete (Tzi Ma) and Mimi (Lillian Lim) into following in her grandmother’s footsteps by entering a gingerbread house competition, she teams up with her former high school friend Billy (Tony Giroux) to find the perfect recipe and love.
“Christmas Comes Twice” (Dec. 13, Hallmark) – Emily (Tamera Mowry-Housley) is a newscaster who still cares about a man (Michael Xavier) from her past who got away. A carousel ride magically returns her to a carnival five years in the past, allowing her to have a second chance at love.
“Christmas Homecoming” (working title) (Dec. 13, Hallmark) – Kate (Taylor Cole) and Kevin (Steve Lund) embark on an unforgettable romantic Christmas adventure when a puzzling key and a holiday riddle arrive on their doorsteps.
“Lonestar Christmas” – (Dec. 14, Lifetime) – Erin (Stephanie Bennett), a single mom, takes her daughters to spend the holidays in Texas with her estranged father when she finds romance with local restaurateur Mateo (Marco Grazzini) and forgiveness for the past.
“Christmas on the Menu” – (Dec. 18, Lifetime) – Celebrated chef Josie Jennings (Kim Shaw) returns home from the city to spend the holidays with her mother (Cynthia Gibb), who has just opened a new restaurant. Famed food critic Tanner Rhodes (Clayton James), who has previously given Joosie harsh reviews, visits to review the restaurant, finding a blossoming romance with her in the process.
“A Christmas Exchange (working title)” (Dec. 19, Lifetime) – When two polar opposites, quaint farmhouse owner Molly Cooper (Laura Vandervoort) and London financier Patrick Kingston (Rainbow Sun Francks), swap houses for the holiday season, sparks fly as they get to know each other through email and text conversations.
“Christmas Carousel” (Dec. 19, Hallmark) – The Royal Family of Marcadia hires Lila (Rachel Boston) to fix a carousel and have it completed by Christmas. Lila works with the prince (Neal Bledsoe) to accomplish her task in time.
“Swept Up by Christmas” (working title) (Dec. 19, Hallmark) – The process of downsizing an estate before Christmas leads to conflict between an antique seller and a cleaner. As they filter through the house’s many treasures, they also connect the home’s owner to memories of Christmases in the past.
“A Christmas Break” (Dec. 20, Lifetime) – A school teacher (Cindy Sampson) decides to plan a special Christmas for her students as the school will be closing. In her quest, she enlists the help of a Hollywood actor (Steve Byers) who has returned home to reconnect with his roots.
“Love, Lights, Hanukkah!” (Dec. 20, Hallmark) – Mia Kirshner stars as Christina, a restaurant owner whose DNA test reveals her to be of Jewish descent. The information leads her to connect with a new family and find romance over eight nights. Ben Savage and Marilu Henner also star in the film.
“Project Christmas Wish” (Dec. 20, Hallmark) – When Lucy, a longtime Santa figure for her small-town community, grants a little girl’s holiday dream for a Christmas like she’s had with her mother, she finds her own wishes come to fruition.
“My Gift” (HBO Max) – Carrie Underwood will perform a holiday special alongside an orchestra and choir, playing songs from her Christmas album, “My Gift.” The special also celebrates the artist’s faith and spiritual aspects of Christmas.