Olive, the Other Reindeer
|Olive, the Other Reindeer|
|Directed by||Oscar Moore|
|Produced by||John A. Davis
|Written by||Steve Young
|Music by||Christopher Tyng|
|Editing by||Paul D. Calder|
|Production company||DNA Productions
The Curiosity Company
Fox Television Studios
|Release date||December 17, 1999|
|Running time||45 minutes|
Olive, the Other Reindeer is the titular character of a CGI animated Christmas television special written by Steve Young, and directed by Oscar Moore. The feature was produced by Matt Groening's The Curiosity Company and animated by DNA Productions. It first aired on December 17, 1999 on Fox produced by 20th Century Fox Television, and Flower Films. The special combines paperlike character art in 3-D environments. Sometimes, traditional animation is used.
The story was based on the 1997 children's book by Vivian Walsh and illustrated by J. Otto Seibold. Drew Barrymore voices the titular character. Also featured are the voices of Dan Castellaneta, Peter MacNicol, Joe Pantoliano, Jay Mohr, Ed Asner, Tim Meadows, Billy West, and Michael Stipe.
The story follows a Jack Russell Terrier named Olive (voiced by Drew Barrymore), who does not act at all like a dog. While in town, she meets Martini, a con artist penguin (voiced by Joe Pantoliano), from whom she buys a "Rolexxx,". When she returns home from some errands, she finds her owner, Tim (voiced by Jay Mohr), putting away Christmas decorations and announcing morosely that there "won't be any Christmas".
Olive eventually finds out that this is because Blitzen, one of Santa's reindeer, is injured and can not fly. Santa hopes he can make the Christmas run with "all of the other reindeer". Mishearing this on the radio as "Olive the other reindeer", Olive becomes convinced that it is she Santa is referring to, prompting her to travel to the North Pole to fill in on the sleigh team. On the way to the bus station, Olive runs into an evil mailman (voiced by Dan Castellaneta) who is fed up with the stress of having to deliver the heavy loads of mail during the Christmas rush. He then tells Olive that " Just think, by next year, the world would have forgotten all about Christmas." He also then sings a song about Christmas being over, when the song ends, he learns that Olive is trying to help save Santa's flight. He is vengeful towards Santa for being repeatedly put on his "Naughty" list and is determined to stop Olive from saving Christmas.
Olive goes to the "Mauvehound" bus station to buy a ticket to Arctic Junction. Martini shows up, and Olive buys him a bus ticket out of pity. Before they can leave the station, Olive is captured by the evil mailman, who tells people that Olive is wanted on several counts of mail fraud, such as "licking self-adhesive stamps and not mailing early for the holidays". After pleading to Martini to help her, Martini rolls several pens along the ground, tripping up the mailman. Martini and Olive then catch the bus right before it leaves, with the mailman watching them drive away.
On the bus, Olive and Martini talk to two Eskimos (voiced by Billy West) and driver Richard Stans (voiced by Tim Meadows). They all believe Olive misheard Santa, but wish her luck anyway. The mailman pulls up next to the bus in his mail truck, but Martini fashions a paper airplane out of stationery and throws it at the mailman, knocking him off the road. When they arrive at Arctic Junction, there is a one-hour wait for the next bus, so they go inside the restaurant for some food. After failing to rally everyone to support Olive, they order some food. The group does not know that their waitress is really the mailman, dressed up with a blue wig and a nametag that reads "Flo." The mailman lures Olive outside, saying that Santa is going to give her a flying test. Then, once outside, he throws Olive inside his truck. While he is driving away, Olive finds a package addressed to her from "Deus Ex Machina." The package is a metal file Olive uses to escape.
Back at the Junction, Richard says he can not give Olive and Martini a ride, because he is needed at the depot, and does not want to lose his job. The two go inside the Top of the World Bar, and are initially harassed by Round John Virgin and Schnitzel, Blitzen's flightless cousin. They apologize for their behavior ("We're Not So Bad") and Round John Virgin offers Martini and Olive a ride to the North Pole in his vehicle, named The Polar Express. At the North Pole, Olive is denied entrance to see Santa, but Martini gives the guard a watch as if it was a gift from Santa. When the guard asks Martini to fix it, he says he needs to kill the alarm, because the electromagnetic waves will interfere with the signal from a satellite. Olive digs under the fence, and proceeds to find Santa. Besides Blitzen's injury, he's not sure he wants to go out on Christmas Eve, because he's received mean-spirited letters from some children. Olive convinces him that the mean letters from children are really from the mailman, since they have no postmark, and is put with the other reindeer to fly Santa's sleigh.
Before they leave, the mailman switches the toy bag with his own bag of junk mail and kidnaps Martini. After the sleigh lands at the first house and Olive realizes what has happened, Olive uses the mailman's scent to track him and scares the mailman out of his wits as he thinks Olive is a Ghost. Martini uses a jack-in-the-box to scare the mailman, who hits the window and is knocked unconscious. They retrieve the presents and rescue Martini, and then deliver the presents to the world ("Merry Christmas After All"). Lost in a fog, Olive guides them back to the North Pole by smelling the gingerbread cookies Ms. Claus baked. As a present, Olive is given a pair of antlers to wear. She goes home and makes amends with Tim, who is glad that she does not care if she is different from other dogs.
Meantime, bound with packing tape and cardboard wings, the mailman is put in the penguin exhibit in the zoo in place of Martini, and Martini becomes the new mailman, while everyone enjoys Christmas Day.
- Drew Barrymore as Olive (Barrymore's first child is named "Olive")
- Jay Mohr as Tim
- Joe Pantoliano as Martini
- Peter MacNicol as Fido, Olive's pet flea
- Dan Castellaneta as The Postman
- Billy West as Eskimos
- Edward Asner as Santa Claus
- Tim Meadows as Richard Stans
- Michael Stipe as Schnitzel, Blitzen's flightless cousin
- Tress MacNeille as the news reporter
- Matt Groening as Arturo, the elf that Round John Virgin threw Olive into
- "The Days Still Remaining 'Til Christmas" performed by Drew Barrymore
- "Christmas (Bah, Bug and Hum!)" performed by Dan Castellaneta
- "We're Not So Bad" performed by Michael Stipe of R.E.M.
- "Merry Christmas After All" performed by Big Bad Voodoo Daddy with Drew Barrymore