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The Man Who Invented Christmas Movie is Sure to Become a Holiday Classic

It is the perfect time to take a magical journey this holiday with classic characters and legendary actors in The Man Who Invented Christmas.


About The Man Who Invented Christmas movie

The Man Who Invented Christmas movie from Director Bharat Nalluri tells the story that led to the creation of Ebenezer Scrooge, Tiny Tim, and other time-honored characters from Charles’ Dickens’ beloved book, A Christmas Carol, which he wrote in 1843 at the age of 31. Now playing, The Man Who Invented Christmas shows how Dickens, played by Dan Stevens, mixed real-life inspirations with his vivid imagination to conjure up a timeless tale, forever changing the holiday season, into the celebration that we know today. The film is based on Les Standiford’s 2008 bestselling book, and a playful screenplay from Susan Coyne. The charming movie from Bleeker Street, starring the Stevens, 35, and Christopher Plummer, 87, is perfectly timed for the holiday season, and is certain to become a Christmas classic.


Already a world-renowned author, often referred to as the Shakespeare of his time, Dickens has suffered three flops in a row, and is desperate for another bestseller. Tormented by writer’s block and at odds with his publishers, Dickens grasps an idea for a surefire hit, a Christmas story that he hopes will capture the imagination of his fans and also solve his financial problems. The huge hitch: he has given only six weeks to write and publish the book to get it out before the Christmas holiday. His publishers refuse to give support or money, mistakenly assuming that no one wants to read another book about Christmas. In fact, Christmas was a minor holiday at the time, without the trees, carols or presents.


But Dickens believed so fervently in his idea that he works feverishly to meet his deadline, well into the night, channeling his own memories to conjure up unforgettable characters in the now beloved ghosts of Christmas Past, Present and Yet to Come, and places them on a collision course with miser Ebenezer Scrooge, played with charm and mischief by Plummer, a true acting legend.


Take a look at The Man Who Invented Christmas movie trailer


My The Man Who Invented Christmas movie review

The Man Who Invented Christmas movie is an entertaining and amusing film that is both funny and heartfelt. Dickens wanted everyone to be more generous, especially during this time of year, and his legendary book changed the way everyone views Christmas. Those who see The Man Who Invented Christmas are certain to be entranced by the film, and by the way it recaptures our holiday spirit.


As Dickens says in the movie, ‘if you are lucky, the character you are seeking will appear, and the world you are creating will come alive.’ This is certainly the case for the lovely new holiday classic film, The Man Who Invented Christmas.


The Man Who Invented Christmas movie poster


About The Man Who Invented Christmas Movie Director Bharat Nalluri

Nalluri, a British director of Indian descent, first made his name in the U.K. directing the pilots for three iconic BBC dramas, Hustle, MI-5, and Life on MarsA master storyteller, Nalluri is best known for his charming feature film, Miss Pettigrew Lives for a Day, starring Frances McDormand and Amy Adams. He also directed and was the executive producer of the Emmy-nominated television show, The 100, as well as the HBO miniseries, Tsunami: The Aftermath, which dealt with the harrowing events of the 2004 Asian tsunami. He was nominated for an Emmy for his direction, and cast members Toni Collette and Chiwetel Ejiofor received Golden Globe nominations for the project.

The Man Who Invented Christmas movie poster

Dan Stevens stars as Charles Dickens in director Bharat Nalluri’s THE MAN WHO INVENTED CHRISTMAS, a Bleecker Street release. Credit: Kerry Brown / Bleecker Street

The Man Who Invented Christmas was shot in Dublin, Ireland, and filming took place during the Christmas holidays, which certainly added to the authenticity of the period of the piece. When the author of the book and the screenplay spent time on the set, they were captivated by how all the actors, especially the leading men were so immersed in these roles.


The following is an exclusive interview with The Man Who Invented Christmas Movie Director Bharat Nalluri

Many of our teen readers, and their family members, are familiar with the lovely book that started this. So, was there extra pressure making this movie because of all the fan groups involved: the readers of the book, the fans of A Christmas Carol and those who love Dickens and his great works?

Bharat Nalluri (BN): It was interesting to discover how we could merge Les Standiford’s brilliant The Man Who Invented Christmas, where you delved into this world historically, and then marry that with Dickens’ story through A Christmas Carol.  


What else was involved there?

BN: Well, then [screenwriter] Susan Coyne delivered this beautiful and clever buttoned-up script that married everything and made it such a fun, and joyous journey. It was kind of a no-brainer when that script arrived, because it’s such a gorgeous script.  Susan had done all the heavy lifting before I found myself anywhere near it.


You made this film in Dublin, it’s kind of dark, it’s kind of gray, it kind of helps with the mood for the film, but how do you keep the mood on the set lighter and amiable?

BN: That’s what we’ve done – if you look at the film, it’s actually a very vibrant, beautiful-looking film, and one of the ideas was that we wanted to have a kind of Dickensian magic lantern show. In fact, Charles as a young child, used to get all these magic lanterns shows played by his father for him, so he vividly remembers that as a magical moment in life which is then full of color and joy and we tried to bring that to the world, to the Dickensian world, so that there’s a kind of darkness at the edges, but in the end, it’s a really bright and hopeful film.


The Man Who Invented Christmas movie image

Dan Stevens (left) stars as Charles Dickens and Christopher Plummer (right) stars as Ebenezer Scrooge in director Bharat Nalluri’s THE MAN WHO INVENTED CHRISTMAS, a Bleecker Street release. Credit: Kerry Brown / Bleecker Street


Do you see a modern message for our times even though this happened 174 years ago?

BN:  Yes, I think one of the amazing things about Dickens is that he got to the core of what it is to be human; he truly was a humanist. He saw that it was our job to help others.  He actually says, ‘No man is useless who lightens the burden of another.’


That definitely resonates, and it is something that is repeated in the film.

BN: I think it was relevant then and it’s supremely relevant now, and I think it’s a message that continues on, sadly, and it’s something that we all should look at.  I think that the genius of Dickens is that he created A Christmas Carol, an adventurous, time-traveling exciting story full of comedy and pathos, but underneath it there’s this subtext of humanity. So, that’s why, I believe, it’s never been out of print.  It keeps coming out over and over again and people reference it.  There have been so many different versions of it, and I think it’s as pertinent now as it ever was.


What is working with Christopher Plummer like?

BN: He’s like a little naughty boy. He’s in the toy shop and just having a ball and how generous he is with Dan and with the other actors around him because he just wants everyone to come up to the game and step up to the plate. We just had a great time.


Dan Stevens is best known for the recent Disney musical Beauty and the Beast and his riveting period drama Downton Abbey. What can you say about working with Dan?

BN:  Dan’s a great leader on set. He truly embodied The Man Who Invented Christmas. He was bringing presents for everyone; the cast and the crew were all in love with him. It was a really joyous experience and we shot it in the six weeks prior to Christmas so it kind of reflected what Dickens did, when he wrote A Christmas Carol during the six weeks leading up to Christmas. There was a bit of life imitating art in it. I think their chemistry is amazing in the film.


The Man Who Invented Christmas movie image

Dan Stevens (left) stars as Charles Dickens and Christopher Plummer (right) stars as Ebenezer Scrooge in director Bharat Nalluri’s THE MAN WHO INVENTED CHRISTMAS, a Bleecker Street release. Credit: Kerry Brown / Bleecker Street


Do we find life lessons such as: reconciling with your father, taking time out of your busy work schedule and deadlines to spend time with your children, it never being too late to change, and caring for others around you?

BN: I think so.  The last thing I want to do is preach and say, ‘This is what this movie says to us.’  But I think that was the genius of Dickens. He didn’t do that. He gives you a really fun time; you’re laughing and crying with Scrooge and really enjoying the journey, and then there are things you can take from it if you want to.

That’s the tone we achieved with the film.  It’s a really joyous, feel good Christmas film and at the end of it, if you see anything else, that’s fabulous.


What do you want to happen after movie-goers see your movie?

BN: In my heart, if one person goes and reads a Dickens book after this, my job is done. I think if it inspires you to do that, you can get a lot from Charles Dickens.  


You have already accomplished your goal, because right after seeing your film, I went out and got a lovely copy of A Christmas Carol, to read to my young son.

BN: Perfect, I am so happy to hear that.


The Man Who Invented Christmas movie image

(L to R) Jonathan Pryce as Mr. John Dickens, Ger Ryan as Mrs. Dickens, Dan Stevens as Charles Dickens, and Morfydd Clark as Kate Dickens in director Bharat Nalluri’s THE MAN WHO INVENTED CHRISTMAS, a Bleecker Street release.
Credit: Kerry Brown / Bleecker Street


Christopher Plummer has called you a funny and talented guy with a lovely twinkle in your eye.  What is your response to that?

BN:  He can’t talk to me about twinkle, that man has a gleam in his eye. Look, I’ve been wanting to work with Christopher Plummer ever since I saw The Man Who Would be King many years ago when I was probably age 10 or 11. I had a really wonderful experience with him. He’s extraordinary.  


What made him stand out?

BN: He turned up on set, first person there every day. I’d be walking around the set thinking I was there before anyone else; just looking at the lighting, and working out what I was going to do with the day. I would look and there he would be sitting on the chaise asking, ‘What are you going to do today, Bharat?’


Then what would happen?

BN: we’d have this conversation and then I would say, ‘What would the great director John Huston, who directed The Man Who Would Be King, say right now,’ He would respond: ‘Well, John didn’t say much.’ So, I would say, ‘Okay, I’ll just shut up and get out of your way.’  The secret with actors of this caliber is give them the words and get out of the way; so basically, just do as little as possible.”

What was the dream of your career versus how it turned out? What you hoped for 20 or 30 years ago compared to what you are doing now?

BN:  I come from the north of England from an immigrant Indian family. I was born in India in some village right in the middle of India. If my father hadn’t turned out to be quite good at math, he wouldn’t have gotten a job in England, and really think I would still be a, rice farmer’s boy in India.  


You have quite a journey to talk about.

BN: Yes, I was brought up in the north of England which is a long way away from the metropolitan London’s of the world and the New York’s and the L.A.’s.  So, when I dreamt about working in movies or directing them it felt like a long shot. Now that I’m here, I am just embracing it. I truly know how lucky I am to be doing this, because I know there are many supremely talented people that just haven’t had that lucky break. There’s that old adage, the harder I work the luckier I get. But in truth, I’ve been surrounded by people who have given me those lucky breaks and am blessed for it. I’m just enjoying the ride, who knows where it will go?


What would you advise a teen actor, or someone older, who sees the movie and is inspired to follow in your footsteps or to follow their other dreams?

BN:  Just go and write it, perform it or do it.  You’ve got to be who you are. I was fueled by naiveté. There are so many things that can stop you; so, just let the naivete fuel you, that’s the way through it, that’s how you get anywhere. Don’t let anyone say you can’t do it. Make your own path and give it all that you have!


The Man Who Invented Christmas movie is now playing in theaters.

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