December 7, 2012

‘Finding Mrs. Claus’ a holiday treat

Posted in Between Us column, Entertainment, Movies, Relationships, Women at 4:07 am by dinaheng

Behind the ho-ho-ho at the North Pole is a woman whose name isn’t often mentioned, but she’s the one who has put the twinkle in Santa’s eyes for… oh, at least 500 years now.

Yes, dear viewers, it’s Mrs. Claus, a wise and loving woman who deserves more attention than she usually gets. This week, Santa’s wife decides to help grant a child’s wish herself in “Finding Mrs. Claus,” an original TV movie that airs on Lifetime this Friday, Dec. 7 at 10 p.m. Eastern. (Check local listings for repeat showings through December.)Dinah Eng

When a tired Santa falls asleep on the couple’s 500th anniversary, the neglected Mrs. Claus (played by Mira Sorvino) goes back to work, reading the piles of letters that kids have sent to her husband. When she finds a note addressed to her — rather than the Big Guy in the Red Suit — her heart is touched by the words of a little girl who just wants a new husband for her mother Noelle (Laura Vandervoort).

With a touch of magic, the elderly Mrs. Claus transforms herself into an attractive younger woman, and heads for Las Vegas, determined to help Noelle find the right man.  Missing his missus, Santa (Will Sasso) heads to Sin City to find his bride, but can he make things right before Christmas Eve arrives?

“I loved the idea of examining their marriage and turning the story into a romantic comedy,” says Bruce Johnson, the film’s executive producer and head of Foxfield Entertainment. “We’re so busy with things in our daily lives, and as the holidays approach, there comes a time to just sit back. Christmas movies make people feel good about life and relationships.”

Johnson, an Emmy Award-winning producer, says we all want to believe in stories that have mythological characters.

“Santa Claus is the kindest, most loving person in our world,” he says. “That mythology is a part of our culture, and much of the world shares that in different expressions. For the child, it’s about waiting for Santa and receiving presents.

“I grew up in Minneapolis, which isn’t far from the North Pole. We always left milk and cookies for Santa, and there would always be a note back from him on Christmas morning.”Finding Mrs. Claus

Johnson remembers that his family would make an annual holiday trek to a local department store, where an entire floor was decorated as Santa’s Village. That memory helped to inspire the opening scene of “Finding Mrs. Claus,” where Noelle takes her daughter Hope (Aislyn Watson) to see Santa Claus in a village-like setting.

With Las Vegas as the backdrop, there’s bound to be some mischief, corruption, and greed in this tale, not to mention a cute bartender named Myles (Andrew Walker), who becomes part of Mrs. Claus’s adventure in matchmaking.

“ ‘Finding Mrs. Claus’ is about marriage, and the relationship two people have who are committed to each other,” Johnson says. “For the two younger characters in the film, it’s about finding that love, and seeing that it takes work and commitment to succeed. Santa and Mrs. Claus show us all that, ‘We have this, and you can have it, too.’ “

For more information, check out http://www.mylifetime.com/movies/finding-mrs-claus.

Dinah Eng is a freelance columnist in Los Angeles, and can be reached at betweenustwo@earthlink.net.

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