A Diva's Christmas Carol
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|A Diva's Christmas Carol|
|Based on||A Christmas Carol
by Charles Dickens
|Written by||Richard Schenkman|
|Directed by||Richard Schenkman|
|Starring||Vanessa L. Williams
|Country of origin||United States|
|Running time||120 minutes|
A Diva's Christmas Carol is a 2000 VH1-original Christmas television film starring Vanessa L. Williams, Rozonda Thomas, Brian McNamara and Kathy Griffin. The film is a remake of the Charles Dickens classic, A Christmas Carol, featuring a pop singer who gets a reality check by three Christmas spirits. The film premiered on December 13, 2000.
Ebony Scrooge (Williams) is one of the world's most successful pop singers. With her cold-hearted soul and nasty attitude, she lacks a great deal of holiday cheer and makes her band and manager anything but happy. While in New York for a charity concert, Ebony (who was once part of the 1980s trio "Desire") is visited by one of her former singing partners (who died in a car crash), Marli Jacob (Thomas). She tells Ebony that she was unhappy with her for willingly abandoning her that lead to her drug addiction and eventual death. Because of it, Marli is still earthbound and in chains. She warns Ebony of the same fate if she doesn't change her life soon. Marli tells her that she will be visited by three spirits—Ghost of Christmas Past, Ghost of Christmas Present, and Ghost of Christmas Future—who will hopefully turn Ebony's life around.
The Ghost of Christmas Past (Kathy Griffin) shows Ebony her tragic past with her abusive alcoholic father, and how she became the cold person she is today because of it. The only person that made her feel loved was her brother, Ronnie. Before his death, he got married and had Olivia, whom Ebony hasn't been kind to. She had a relationship with Bob, who was a DJ at the time, and he was considering marrying her before she coldly broke up with him. Ebony was also friends with Marli and Terry during their time in Desire. However, her cold heart caused an eventual strain in their relationship that caused Desire to break up. Before leaving her, the ghost shows Ebony how her actions in not helping her estranged band mate and friend, Terry, led to the degenerate state she's now in.
The Ghost of Christmas Present (John Taylor) shows Ebony the negative consequences her actions have brought upon both Bob and her band. She comes to learn just how much her band really hates her and talks behind her back. Ebony shows sympathy and concern for Bob's ailing son Tim, slowly realizing just how strained his relationship with his family is. The ghost shows Ebony where her accountant Ernie is spending his Christmas, and how he has been secretly stealing money from her accounts. This angers her because he was supposed her trusted accountant and instead Ernie is stealing from her to better himself. The Ghost then takes Ebony to the apartment of her estranged niece, Olivia. Olivia tells her husband and friends that despite Ebony's cold attitude, she still loves her aunt. She starts regretting her past treatment towards Olivia, now realizing that she is the only family Ebony has left. Lastly, Ebony meets the homeless people her concert is supposed to benefit, but whom she's never interacted with—the ghost shows her how they appreciate Christmas despite having nothing. At this point, she is slowly starting to see everything in a new light(including the way she mistreated Bob and her band). Before leaving, the Ghost warns Ebony of the two main killers that could destroy her own life: Ignorance and Greed.
However, the last spirit (Ghost of Christmas Future) is the one that gets through to Ebony. It's depicted as a miniature television showing a tragic episode of Behind the Music, which depicts many artists such as Brian McKnight commenting on the life and death of Ebony Scrooge. Her band mates uses the show to air out their grievances about who she really is inside and ruining her public image in the process. When Bob reveals how much he couldn't forgive Ebony for making him work on Christmas that led to both Tim's death and his wife, Kelly, divorcing him, it breaks her heart. It is also revealed that she died flat broke due to both Ernie draining her finances and her own career floundering in her last years. Ebony also discovers that Olivia was the only person who went to her funeral, while everyone else benefitted from her death.
After learning her lesson, Ebony opens her heart to Christmas once again. Armed with the knowledge of Ernie's misdeeds, she blackmails him into helping her band invite their families to a Christmas dinner backstage, prepared by a professional chef. Ebony reconciles with her niece, Olivia, whom reveals her pregnancy, and invites Terry to perform with her. She allows Bob to go on vacation with his wife and has Tim transferred to an elite hospital in New York where the doctors can take better care of him. At the beginning of her concert, Ebony fires Ernie and has him arrested for embezzlement. Ebony sees Marli's spirit, now free from her punishment after having helped set her friend on the right path. She is happy to watch Ebony and Terry perform Sleigh Ride, an old song of theirs, before leaving for Heaven.
In the end, Ebony celebrates becoming a Great-Aunt to Olivia's newborn daughter, and Tim is much healthier and spending time with his parents. She and Terry have become close friends once more, allowing Marli to rest in peace.
- Vanessa L. Williams - Ebony
- Rozonda Thomas - Marli
- Brian McNamara - Bob
- Kathy Griffin - Ghost of Christmas Past
- John Taylor - Ghost of Christmas Present
- Stephanie Biddle - Terry
- Richard Jutras - Ernie
- Linda Goodwin - Kelly
- Michelle Lipper - Tina
- Amy Sloan - Patrice
- Henri Pardo - Matt
- Christian Paul - Lance
- Warren 'Slim' Williams - Ebony's Father
Vanessa Williams sang the songs for the movie's soundtrack, including the original songs "Heart of Christmas" and "Heartquake" (featuring Rozonda Thomas). She also sings a remake of the 1948 holiday classic "Sleigh Ride".
- A Diva's Christmas Carol
- A Diva's Christmas Carol at the Internet Movie Database
- A Diva's Christmas Carol at AllMovie