As the weather gets colder and trees and stockings get hung up with care, we know that it’s only a matter of time before the yuletide festivities are in full bloom. Indeed, as we inch ever closer to December, it’s clear that Christmas time is here, and we’re only a few short weeks away from seeing ole’ Saint Nick himself. But this year, Santa Claus is going to be much more naughty than nice — particularly on the silver screen, as we’re soon set to see David Harbour‘s holly, jolly portrayal of Father Christmas himself. Violent Night is an ultra-bloody action-comedy that finds Kris Kringle kicking ass and crossing names off his naughty list. Who knows what bawdy merriment is in store for this new seasonal lark, but we have our first peak under the stocking courtesy of Universal‘s latest featurette, which dives into the making of this raunchy farce and explores how Harbour‘s new take on the big man up north fares different than most.
While we’ve seen our fair share of Santa Claus movies, particularly those directed at family audiences, this featurette makes it very clear that Violent Night is definitely catered towards an adult audience. The film will include its fair share of violence, gore, and mayhem, and not everyone is going to walk away with their lives or well-being intact. But as Harbour notes in this promotional video, there’s a bundle of heart to be found in these proceedings, too. It’ll serve as a cross between Die Hard (which, as many people know, is absolutely a Christmas movie) and Miracle on 34th Street, striving to balance the naughty with the nice.
Indeed, we have even seen a few R-rated Santa Claus movies in the past. Most notably, Bad Santa 1 & 2, along with the Silent Night, Deadly Night movies, Rare Exports: A Christmas Tale, Fatman, Santa’s Slay, and, a personal favorite of mine, Christmas Evil. But where Violent Night will differ from the rest, as this promo attests, is that it’ll combine the gooey warm feelings of your favorite Christmas classic with the perverse naughty pleasures of a raunchy action romp. In essence, if done well, Violent Night will play like a cinematic equivalent of munching on gingerbread men while chugging down spiked egg nog. Who knows if the movie will pull it off, but there’s reason to believe that it will — based on the talent involved.
Along with Harbour taking the reins as Papa Noel, Violent Night will also star John Leguizamo as our ruthless bad guy, while Edi Patterson, Alex Hassell, Cam Gigandet, Alexis Louder, and Beverly D’Angelo will round out the cast. Furthermore, it’s directed by Tommy Wirkola, who has proven his wintery chops with the Dead Snow films. It’s also produced by Kelly McCormick, David Leitch, and Guy Danella, who have been behind action thrillers John Wick, Atomic Blonde, Deadpool 2, Nobody, and this year’s Bullet Train. Violent Night is written by Pat Casey and Josh Miller, the scribes behind Sonic the Hedgehog. Hopefully, these combined talents produce a gleefully fun and irreverent good time at the movies this holiday season. But we don’t have to wait too long to find out.
Violent Night hits theaters on December 2nd. Check out the naughty-and-nice featurette below.