Press Release: ABC Family offers viewers the best way to gear up their holiday festivities with the network’s annual programming bonanza “Countdown to 25 Days of Christmas” beginning on Sunday, November 23rd .
The movies featured in this year’s “Countdown to 25 Days of Christmas” demand to be watched with a bowl of popcorn and possibly some loved ones. There is no better way to unwind from a day of holiday activities - preparing the turkey, eating leftovers, spending all your money during Black Friday - than with a favorite movie and your social-media platform of choice. Let’s face it: no television viewing experience is complete without a hashtag.
“Countdown to 25 Days of Christmas” airs Sunday, November 23 - Sunday, November 30. Movie highlights include:
Sunday, November 23
(5PM-8PM ET/PT) THE HUNGER GAMES
Every year in the ruins of what was once North America, the evil Capitol of the nation of Panem forces each of its twelve districts to send a teenage boy and girl to compete in the Hunger Games. A twisted punishment for a past uprising and an ongoing government intimidation tactic, The Hunger Games is a nationally televised event in which “Tributes” must fight with one another until one survivor remains. Pitted against highly trained Tributes who have prepared for these Games their entire lives, Katniss (Jennifer Lawrence) is forced to rely upon her sharp instincts as well as the mentorship of drunken former victor Haymitch Abernathy (Woody Harrelson). If she’s ever to return home to District 12, Katniss must make impossible choices in the arena that weigh survival against humanity and life against love. The Hunger Games stars Academy Award-winner Jennifer Lawrence as Katniss Everdeen, Josh Hutcherson as Peeta Mellark, Liam Hemsworth as Gale Hawthorne Academy Award-nominee Woody Harrelson as Haymitch Abernathy, Elizabeth Banks as Effie Trinket, Lenny Kravitz as Cinna, Academy Award-nominee Stanley Tucci as Caesar Flickerman and Donald Sutherland as President Snow. The Hunger Games repeats on Friday, November 28th at 8PM and Saturday, November 29th at 5PM ET/PT.
(8PM - 10:30PM ET/PT) FINDING NEMO
Nemo, an adventurous young clownfish, is unexpectedly taken from his Great Barrier Reef home to a dentist's office aquarium. It's up to his worrisome father Marlin and his friendly-but-forgetful regal-blue tang fish Dory to bring Nemo home -- meeting vegetarian sharks, surfer-dude turtles, hypnotic jellyfish, hungry seagulls, and more along the way. Finding Nemo repeats on Monday, November 24th at 6pm ET/PT.
(10:30PM - 12AM ET/PT) TIM BURTON’S THE NIGHTMARE BEFORE CHRISTMAS
In this beloved animated movie, Jack Skellington (Danny Elfman & Chris Sarandon), Halloweentown’s beloved Pumpkin King, is obsessed with bringing Christmas under his control and enlists his loyal townspeople to help him become a substitute Santa and create a “new and improved” version of the holiday.
Monday, November 24
(6PM-8:30PM) FINDING NEMO
Please see description on Sunday, November 23rd at 8PM ET/PT
(8:30PM-11PM ET/PT) DARK SHADOWS
Continuing their creative and commercially incandescent partnership, superstar Johnny Depp and macabre movie master Tim Burton reunite yet again in this silver screen adaptation of the cult classic supernatural soap opera. When Barnabas Collins’ (Johnny Depp) fling with jealous Angelique (Eva Green) goes horribly wrong, she turns Barnabas into a vampire and buries him alive. Almost two hundred years after this unfortunate incident, Barnabas is eventually freed and returns home to protect his dysfunctional descendants. The movie also stars Michelle Pfeiffer, Helena Bonham Carter and Bella Heathcote. Dark Shadows repeats on Tuesday, November 25th at 6pm ET/PT.
(12AM-2AM ET/PT) ANOTHER CINDERELLA STORY
A famous dancer (Drew Seeley) returns for his senior year to surround himself with “real” people and remind himself why he fell in love with dance in the first place. At the masked high school dance, he meets a mesmerizing girl (Selena Gomez), but before he can learn her true identity, she disappears. His only clue to her identity is the mp3 player she left behind.
Tuesday, November 25
(6PM-8:30PM ET/PT) DARK SHADOWS
Please see description on Monday, November 24th at 8:30PM ET/PT
(8:30PM-11PM ET/PT) WILLY WONKA & THE CHOCOLATE FACTORY
This family musical fantasy tells the story of eccentric candy maker Willy Wonka (Gene Wilder). Determined to find someone worthy of a dream-of-a-lifetime jackpot, Wonka hides five golden tickets inside five candy bars, with the winners receiving a trip through his factory and enough candy to last, well, forever. Poor but honest Charlie Bucket (Peter Ostrum) is thrilled when he finds a ticket and chooses his Grandpa Joe (Jack Albertson) to visit the factory with him. But when Wonka’s rival Slugworth (Gunter Meisner) offers Charlie a lot of money in exchange for the Everlasting Gobstopper sample, Charlie makes a heartwarming decision that earns him Wonka’s admiration and trust. Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory repeats on Wednesday, November 26th at 6pm ET/PT.
(12AM-2AM ET/PT) MIRROR, MIRROR
After a beloved King vanishes, his ruthless wife seizes control of the kingdom and keeps her beautiful 18-year-old stepdaughter, Snow White (Lily Collins), hidden away in the palace. But when the princess attracts the attention of a charming and wealthy visiting prince, the jealous Queen (Julia Roberts) banishes the girl to a nearby forest. Taken in by a band of rebellious but kindhearted dwarfs, Snow White blossoms into a brave young woman determined to save her country from the Queen. With the support of her new friends, she roars into action to reclaim her birthright and win back her Prince (Armie Hammer) in this magical adventure comedy that will capture the hearts and imaginations of audiences the world over.
Wednesday, November 26
(6PM-8:30PM ET/PT) WILLY WONKA & THE CHOCOLATE FACTORY
Please see description on Tuesday, November 25th at 8:30PM ET/PT
(8:30PM-11PM ET/PT) CARS 2
Cars 2 is a laugh-out-loud, heart-warming adventure geared for the entire family. Star racecar Lightning McQueen (Owen Wilson) and the incomparable tow truck Mater (Larry the Cable Guy) take their friendship on the road from Radiator Springs to exciting new places when they head overseas to compete in the first-ever World Grand Prix to determine the world’s fastest car. But the road to the championship is filled with plenty of potholes, detours and hilarious surprises when Mater gets caught up in an intriguing adventure of his own: international espionage! Cars 2 repeats on Thursday, November 27th at 5:30PM ET/PT
(12AM-2AM ET/PT) A CINDERELLA STORY
Deep in the heart of the San Fernando Valley, Sam (Hilary Duff) a modern-day Cinderella, finds her Prince Charming (Chad Michael Murray) on the Internet. Despite the comically malevolent efforts of her stepmother and stepsisters to keep her at work in their diner, Sam dreams of meeting her online soul mate at the high school Halloween dance. Now, Sam discovers that outward appearances can be deceiving--and that even in the San Fernando Valley stories can have a happy ending.
Thursday, November 27
(5:30PM-8PM ET/PT) CARS 2
Please see description on Wednesday, November 26th at 8:30PM ET/PT
(8PM-8:30PM ET/PT) TOY STORY OF TERROR!
Join Woody (Tom Hanks), Buzz (Tim Allen), Jessie (Joan Cusack) and their pals in a frighteningly fun animated adventure. What starts out as an exciting road trip for the Toy Story gang takes an unexpected turn for the worse following a detour to a roadside motel. After Mr. Potato Head (Don Rickles) suddenly disappears, his friends find themselves caught up in a hilarious mystery that must be solved before they suffer the same fate in this thrilling Toy Story! Toy Story of Terror! repeats on Friday, November 28th at 7:30PM ET/PT
(8:30PM-11PM ET/PT) RATATOUILLE
Remy (Patton Oswalt) dreams of becoming a great a French chef despite his family’s wishes and the obvious problem that Remy is, well, a rat in a decidedly rodent-phobic profession. When Fate places Remy in the sewers of Paris, he finds himself ideally situated beneath the same restaurant named famous by his culinary hero, Auguste Gusteau (Brad Garrett). Despite the apparent dangers of being an unlikely, and certainly unwanted, visitor in the kitchen of a fine French restaurant, Remy’s passion for cooking soon sets into motion a hilarious and exciting rat race that turns the culinary world of Paris upside down. Remy finds himself torn between his calling and passion in live or returning forever to his previous existence as a rat. Along the way he learns the truth about friendship, family and having no choice but to be who he really is - a rat who wants to be a chef. Ratatouille repeats on Friday, November 28th at 5PM ET/PT
(12AM-2AM ET/PT) A CINDERELLA STORY: ONCE UPON A SONG
It’s a modern and enchanting twist on an enduring classic. Katie (Lucy Hale) dreams of being a recording artist but is continually thwarted by her cruel stepmother (Missi Pyle) and stepsister (Megan Park). When Katie falls hard for Luke (Freddie Stroma), the new boy at her Performing Arts school, she tries to get his attention with her singing. But when her stepsister takes credit for Katie’s amazing voice and Luke falls for the wrong girl, Katie must learn to stand up for her dreams before her stepmother forces Katie to sing Luke into the arms of her wicked stepsister.
Friday, November 28
(5PM-7:30PM ET/PT) RATATOUILLE
Please see description on Thursday, November 27th at 8:30PM ET/PT
(7:30PM-8PM ET/PT) TOY STORY OF TERROR!
Please see description on Thursday, November 27th at 8PM ET/PT
(8PM-11PM ET/PT) THE HUNGER GAMES
Please see description on Sunday, November 23rd at 5PM ET/PT
(12AM-2AM ET/PT) HOME ALONE 3
In the third installment of the popular Home Alone series, complete with an all-new cast, a top-secret computer chip has been stolen from the U.S. Defense Department. The international criminals who expertly engineered its heist are asking for untold millions of dollars on the black market. But the precious booty, hidden inside a toy car, has been temporarily misplaced, thanks to inattentive airport baggage handlers. Its final destination: a quiet, comfortable Chicago suburb. Taking up residence in the tree-lined neighborhood, the four highly-trained spies marshal their diabolical resources and ruthless skills to retrieve the device. Their state-of-the-art surveillance and shrewd strategy foil Interpol, the FBI, U.S. Defense Department agents and the local police, but one person can stop this high-tech gang of black marketers: eight-year-old Alex Pruitt (Alex D. Linz). He is the last and only line of defense when this pesky team of bad guys invades his neighborhood. Alex has his own special surveillance tools. He has a carefully mapped-out strategy. He has courage. He has the chicken pox. And he's "home alone"...
Saturday, November 29
(5PM-8PM ET/PT) THE HUNGER GAMES
Please see description on Sunday, November 23rd at 5PM ET/PT
(8PM-10PM ET/PT) BRAVE
“Brave” whisks viewers away on an astonishing adventure to an ancient land full of mystery and tradition. Merida (Kelly Macdonald) is a skilled archer and headstrong daughter of King Fergus (Billy Connolly) and Queen Elinor (Emma Thompson). Determined to carve her own path in life, Merida defies an age-old custom sacred to the unruly and uproarious lords of the land. When Merida's actions inadvertently unleash chaos in the kingdom, she must harness all of her skills and resources including her clever and mischievous triplet brothers to undo a beastly curse before it's too late, and discover the meaning of true bravery. Brave repeats on Sunday, November 30th at 6PM ET/PT.
(10PM-12AM ET/PT) DESPICABLE ME
In a happy suburban neighborhood surrounded by white picket fences and flowering rose bushes sits a black house with a dead lawn. Unbeknownst to the neighbors, hidden deep beneath this home is a vast secret hideout belonging to Gru (Steve Carrell), a dastardly villain who, along with the help of his many little minions, is planning the biggest heist in the history of the world: he's going to steal the moon! But his plans are foiled the day he encounters the immense will of three little orphaned girls who look at him and see something that no one else has ever seen: a potential Dad. This smash hit boasts a stellar all-star vocal cast that includes Julie Andrews, Jason Segel, Russell Brand, Danny McBride, Will Arnett, Kristen Wiig, Mindy Kaling and more. Despicable Me repeats on Sunday, November 30th at 8PM ET/PT.
(12AM-2AM ET/PT) PARANORMAN
The team behind Coraline delivers this stop-motion 3D animated comedy thriller about a small town that comes under siege by zombies and needs the help of a misunderstood local boy named Norman (Kodi Smit-McPhee), who is able to speak with the dead. In addition to the zombies, he'll have to take on ghosts, witches and, worst of all, moronic grown-ups, to save his town from a centuries-old curse. But this young ghoul whisperer may find his paranormal activities pushed to their otherworldly limits. The all-star vocal cast includes Casey Affleck, John Goodman, Anna Kendrick and Elaine Stritch.
Sunday, November 30
(6PM-8PM ET/PT) BRAVE
Please see description on Saturday, November 29th at 8PM ET/PT
(8PM-10PM ET/PT) DESPICABLE ME
Please see description on Saturday, November 29th at 10PM ET/PT
(10PM-12AM ET/PT) NATIONAL LAMPOON’S CHRISTMAS VACATION
The comic misadventures of the beleaguered Griswold family continue in this latest Vacation outing. This time America's most dedicated dad, Clark Griswold (Chevy Chase) is determined to stay at home to create "the most fun-filled old fashioned family Christmas ever" -- but life has a particular way of throwing wet logs on Clark's fire.