A Christmas Story Marathon Kicks Off On TBS This Christmas Eve

By Kelly West 2011-12-18 17:41:52 discussion comments
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"You'll shoot your eye out!"

If you’re hoping to find the annual marathon of A Christmas Story on your TV this Christmas, rest assured, TBS has the beloved film set to run on repeat, beginning with Christmas Eve and set to run all the way through Christmas day. This year marks the marathon's fifteenth anniversary.


Based on one of Jean Shepherd’s short stories, the film follows a boy who desperately wants a Red Rider BB gun for Christmas. Amidst his plans to convince his parents (and Santa) to get him the gun, a lot of other seemingly small occurrences transpire between Ralphie and his family, all of which amount to what turns out to be an extremely memorable Christmas. The 1983 movie, and the story on which it’s based, use the 1940’s backdrop to illustrate simpler times, when TV was the radio, kids used decoder rings to unscramble cryptic advertisements for Ovaltine, and a dad might find a brief reprieve from battling with the furnace in the basement by enjoying the sight of electric sex gleaming in the window, which in the case of this story, comes in the form of a gaudy leg-lamp.

The Christmas Story marathon, which has been a tradition for fifteen years now, used to air on TNT but switched to TBS in 2004, where it has aired since. This year, the first airing of the film begins at 8:00 p.m. on Saturday, December 24th and it will run for 24 hours as usual.

In honor of the 15th anniversary of the marathon, TBS released these fun bits of trivia about the film and the marathon. Have a look and impress your friends and family this Christmas!

A Christmas Story was shot on location in Cleveland, Ohio, although some scenes were shot in Canada. The residents of Cleveland were apparently so entranced with the movie, many local auto club members donated the use of their antique cars to help portray the movie’s 1940s setting. As a tribute to the city, the producers decided to name the street the movie family lived on Cleveland St.

A Christmas Story opened in theaters just before Thanksgiving in 1983, but by the time Christmas rolled around, many theater owners had stopped showing it, feeling it had “played out.”  Complaints were lodged, and the movie returned to select theaters and continued playing well into January 1984.

A Christmas Story was selected in an E! Entertainment poll as the #1 holiday movie of all time.

Memorabilia connected the movie is hugely popular and widely available, including replicas of the famed “major award” leg lamp, which can be found through various sellers online.

Peter Billingsley, who continues to act in movies, has also become a successful executive producer, with such credits as the blockbuster Iron Man and the holiday film Four Christmases. TBS recently ordered a sitcom pilot entitled Sullivan and Son from Billingsley and his producing partner, Vince Vaughn.

TBS first aired A Christmas Story in Dec. 1, 1992. Since then, TBS and its sister networks TNT and Turner Classic Movies have aired the movie nearly 275 times.

The 24 Hours of A Christmas Story marathon first aired in 1997 on TNT. It moved to TBS in 2004.

24 Hours of A CHRISTMAS STORY is one of the most popular holiday programming events on cable. Last year, the marathon averaged 3 million viewers, up 2% compared to the prior year, with a total accumulated audience of more than 50 million viewers over the 24 hours.

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