A Charlie Brown Christmas (DVD)
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As incredible as it seems, CBS head man James Aubrey originally vetoed his network's presentation of the animated A Charlie Brown Christmas on the grounds that Charles M. Schultz's round-headed protagonist was a "loser" who wouldn't attract an audience! The story proposes that Charlie Brown is convinced that the true meaning of Christmas has been forgotten by his Peanuts friends, not to mention the rest of the world. "Psychiatrist" Lucy advises Charlie Brown to get into the holiday spirit by directing the kids' upcoming Christmas play. Despite his utter lack of control over his cast, Charlie Brown takes his job seriously, even setting out to find a genuine Christmas tree to decorate the set instead of the usual aluminum job. But Charlie Brown's tree is a scrawny, pathetic thing, and all seems lost. That is, until the rest of the Peanuts gang decide to pitch in and decorate the woebegone tree. An instant hit when first telecast December 9, 1965, A Charlie Brown Christmas has been rebroadcast virtually every year since. It was produced by Lee Mendelson and Bill Melendez, the latter providing the squeals and growls of Charlie Brown's hyper-intelligent dog, Snoopy. ~ Hal Erickson, Rovi