Grandma Got Run Over by a Reindeer (film)
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|Grandma Got Run Over by a Reindeer|
|Directed by||Phil Roman|
Maggie Blue O'Hara
|Narrated by||Elmo Shropshire|
|Country of origin||
|Executive producer(s)||Phil Roman|
|Running time||51 minutes|
The Fred Rappoport Company, Inc. |
Phil Roman Entertainment
|Distributor||Warner Home Video|
|Original network||The WB|
|Original release||October 31, 2000|
Grandma Got Run Over by a Reindeer is a Canadian–American animated Christmas special, directed by Phil Roman. The special first aired October 31, 2000 on The WB. Despite this film's Christmas theme, the date for its original airing was Halloween. It has subsequently aired on The CW (the successor to The WB), Cartoon Network, Boomerang and Freeform during Advent. Since Warner Home Video distributed this special, Time Warner owns the copyrights. The title and plot are based on the novelty song of the same name.
The show begins by introducing Jake Spankenheimer, along with his family, most notably his Grandma, who owns a small general store in the town of Cityville. The store happens to be the only piece of property not owned by Austin Bucks, the wealthiest man in town, whose CEO corporation specializes in making Christmas easier and less involved for the town's busy residents. Grandma, however, tells Austin that his method of trying to make Christmas easier is not really for the best and refuses to sell the store. This runs afoul of the gold-digging Cousin Mel, who plans to sell the store anyway.
Jake loves the holiday season, as does his grandmother, though most of his family is not as excited about it. Jake and his sister, Daphne, argue over Santa Claus' existence, as Jake's parents gently try to break the news to him that Santa is not real. Meanwhile, Cousin Mel comes up with a plan to sabotage Grandma's famous fruitcake recipe, secretly add an extra ingredient with hopes that they won't sell, forcing Grandma to sell the store to Austin. Grandma, who hasn't taken her medication that evening, then takes the fruit cake with her when she leaves the house on Christmas Eve night, but Santa and his reindeer fly overhead, suddenly out of control, crash into her. Jake witnesses the accident, but the family refuse to believe him. The next morning, however, Grandma is missing, and the police find an imprint of her in the snow, along with her belongings. Cousin Mel also finds a letter that she quickly hides from the others.
Nine months pass without Grandma and the store's business drops; during this time, Cousin Mel comes up with a new plan to sell the store to Austin, by tricking Grandpa into giving her his power of attorney. However, when Jake objects, Austin agrees to give him another week in order to find Grandma before going through with the deal. Adamant in his belief that Santa ran over her, Jake emails Santa, and soon Quincy, Santa's head elf, comes to take Jake to the North Pole. It turns out that Santa had taken Grandma back to the North Pole for medical treatment. Unfortunately she since has amnesia, and until receiving Jake's e-mail Santa been unsure of who she was. As Jake explains the situation, Santa, Quincy and the amnesiac Grandma agree to go with him to stop the deal.
When they arrive in Cityville, however, Cousin Mel and her attorney, I.M. Slime, quickly tricked Grandma into going with them. After Santa explains to Austin what happened, Jake and Quincy discover that Grandma has gone missing again. Cousin Mel then use the opportunity to accuse Santa of being behind her disappearance, and he is put on trial for kidnapping, leaving the scene of an accident and "sleighicular negligence". The two then plot to sue him, deducing that someone who can pay for billions of presents must be incredibly wealthy.
Three months later, Jake suspects that Cousin Mel may have been involved in Grandma's second disappearance, and along with Quincy, follows her to a cabin in the woods where she and I.M. Slime are keeping Grandma out of sight. They rescue Grandma, and find Santa's letter explaining what happened that Cousin Mel had found at the site of Grandma's accident—and also the vial of the ingredient Cousin Mel added to Grandma's fruit cake that Christmas Eve night, which had the effect of "reindeer-nip" that reindeer are strongly attracted to. They then manage to restore Grandma's memory by feeding her some of her own fruit cake, and rush to the courthouse to prove that Cousin Mel has been behind everything that happened to Grandma.
Confronted with the evidence, Cousin Mel is forced to confess everything she did. She even confesses that she hates the true meaning of Christmas and how everyone share and cares. She is then placed under arrest for obstructing justice and "almost ruining Christmas" and the judge lets Santa go after finally discovering the truth. Austin approaches Grandma again, this time offering to franchise her store throughout the country, having seen how much she and Jake care about their family and business.
The show ends with Grandma accidentally picking up the tainted fruit cake instead of her own recipe, with the result that Santa hits her again as he is trying to fly back to the North Pole. Grandpa and Jake pick her up; this time Grandma did not suffer amnesia. Santa's sleigh takes off into the night with him saying the Spanish phrase for "Merry Christmas": "Feliz Navidad".
- Grandma Spankenheimer (voiced by Susan Blu) – Jake and Daphne's loving grandmother and Frank's mother who loves Christmas. Grandma is the owner of a general store in Cityville. Merchandise at the store includes ornaments, toys, and Grandma's famous "Killer Fruitcake."
- Jake Spankenheimer (voiced by Alex Doduk) – The main protagonist of the film, Jake leads the search for Grandma when she mysteriously disappears, and Grandma being hit by Santa's sleigh. A firm believer in Santa Claus, Jake proves his family wrong when he finds the real Santa Claus.
- Cousin Mel (voiced by Michele Lee) – The main antagonist of the film. Cousin Mel is a money-grubbing do-badder who wears too much makeup and jewelry and beats Grandpa at cards. Cousin Mel is out to sell the store to the wealthy Austin Bucks, and makes Santa Claus the fall guy in a lawsuit over Grandma's disappearance so she can get all his money. Her partner in crime was her lawyer, I.M. Slime, who was also in on Mel's scheme. At the end of the film, she is arrested, imprisoned, and is on Santa's naughty list for life. Other than simply "a cousin," it is unclear as to her exact relationship within the family or even if she is a Spankenheimer.
- Grandpa Spankenheimer & The Narrator (both voiced by Elmo Shropshire) – Jake and Daphne's grandfather, Grandma's daffy husband and Frank's father. Grandpa accidentally gives Cousin Mel power of attorney, giving Cousin Mel the power to sell Spankenheimer's General Store to Austin Bucks. The narrator is the adult Jake telling the story.
- Austin Bucks (voiced by Cam Clarke) – A monopolizing store tycoon that wants to buy the store from the Spankenheimers, but near the end of the special, decides instead of buying out the Spankenheimers, he decides to franchise the store, which Grandma eventually accepts the offer to franchise the store. Bucks is completely unaware of Cousin Mel's plots and, in fact, gives Jake the opportunity to prove his story, despite not really believing it.
- Santa Claus (voiced by Jim Staahl) – A jolly old man who delivers gifts around the world on Christmas Eve. Santa accidentally runs over Grandma with his reindeer-drawn sleigh, and takes her to his hospital at his North Pole workshop.
- Mrs. Claus (voiced by Kathleen Barr) She is known for making cookies with the elves, caring for the reindeer, and preparing toys with her husband. She makes an appearance in this film reading an article in the newspaper about her husband getting arrested and later flying home with him after he was acquitted.
- Daphne Spankenheimer (voiced by Maggie Blue O'Hara) – Jake's older sister, Grandma and Grandpa's granddaughter and Mr. and Mrs. Spankenheimer's daughter. Daphne is a bit more skeptical and less apt to helping Grandma than Jake is, but she is not as apathetic as Cousin Mel. Despite this, she still cares about her brother and Grandma and Grandpa.
- Frank Spankenheimer (voiced by Scott McNeil) – Jake and Daphne's father and Grandma and Grandpa's son.
- Rita Spankenheimer (voiced by Kathleen Barr) – Jake and Daphne's mother and Grandma and Grandpa's daughter-in law.
- I.M. Slime (voiced by Kathleen Barr) – Cousin Mel's money-loving lawyer. sent to prison with Cousin Mel.
- Officers - (voiced by Jim Fisher and Kathleen Barr) - Two police officers who investigate Grandma's disappearance and later arrest Cousin Mel.