New holiday specials, old favorites to air on NBC for 2021 season

News

CHRISTMAS IN ROCKEFELLER CENTER — 2020 — Pictured: Rockefeller Center Christmas tree — (Photo by: Heidi Gutman/NBC)

(WCMH) — The holidays are almost here and NBC is gearing up for a season of specials designed to put you and your family in a festive mood.

The programming kicks off the night of Nov. 24 with a “Saturday Night Live” Thanksgiving special.

Then, on Thanksgiving morning, Nov. 25, “Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade” will return to the airwaves in pre-pandemic style with all the excitement and pageantry of years past from 9 a.m.-12 p.m.

NBC Prime Holiday Specials

A Saturday Night Live Thanksgiving Special  Wed, 11/249-11 p.m.
89th Annual Christmas In Rockefeller CenterWed, 12/018-10 p.m.
Kelly Clarkson Presents When Christmas Comes AroundWed, 12/0110-11 p.m.
Annie Live!Thur, 12/028 p.m.
A Saturday Night Live Christmas SpecialThur, 12/169-11 p.m.
Dr. Seuss’ The GrinchWed, 12/228-10 p.m.
NBC Movie of the Week: It’s A Wonderful LifeFri, 12/248-11 p.m.
Christmas Eve Mass from St. Peter’s BasilicaFri, 12/2411:35 p.m. -1:00 a.m.
How the Grinch Stole ChristmasSat, 12/258-8:30 p.m.
NBC Movie of the Week: How the Grinch Stole ChristmasSat, 12/258:30-11 p.m.

According to an NBC release, the parade will “feature 15 giant character balloons, 28 floats, 36 novelty and heritage inflatables, more than 800 clowns, 10 marching bands and 9 performance groups, a host of musical stars and the one-and-only Santa Claus.”

Following the parade, from noon-2 p.m., NBC will once again broadcast “The National Dog Show Presented by Purina.” The network states this will be the 20th year of the special.

Actor John O’Hurley will host alongside expert analyst and American Kennel Club-licensed judge David Frei. Rounding out the broadcast team will be NBC correspondent and sports broadcaster, Mary Carillo, reporting from backstage and inside the show ring.

NBC quoted O’Hurley in a release about this year’s installment of the beloved television event.

“It is extraordinary how this TV special has become an annual television-watching tradition for American families,” stated O’Hurley, who has written three books about the dogs in his life since the show’s 2002 debut.  “Dogs more than ever have become a part of people’s lives and the show reminds us of how great they are and how easy it is for them to make us smile.” 

The following week on Dec. 1, NBC will present a full night of holiday programming with the “89th Annual Christmas In Rockefeller Center” from 8-10 p.m. and the premiere of a new Kelly Clarkson special, “Kelly Clarkson Presents When Christmas Comes Around,” from 10-11 p.m.

NBC describes the special as being “filled with Clarkson’s new original songs as well as a curated list of iconic classics, dancing, superstar performances.”

The network also writes that the show’s stage, “will be designed to evoke timeless Christmas themes inspired by the power of song that change the viewers’ point of view – from fantastical worlds of being underneath the tree to a forest lit by the Northern Lights.” 

“People celebrate the holidays in different ways and that is the inspiration behind the original songs and the curated classics that are featured in this special,” said Clarkson. “No matter what your heart is feeling this holiday season, I hope that this hour brings you joy and happiness exactly where you are.”

Joining Clarkson will be Brett Eldredge, Ariana Grande, Jay Leno, Melissa McCarthy, Leslie Odom Jr., Amy Poehler, the one-and-only Santa Claus and some special everyday heroes with life-changing surprises, according to NBC.

Also, new this year will be “Annie Live!” on Dec. 2 starting at 8 p.m. The all-star live performance will include Harry Connick Jr., Taraji P. Henson, Nicole Scherzinger, Tituss Burgess and Jane Krakowski. Newcomer Celina Smith will step into the title role after being chosen in a nationwide search.

Another “SNL” special will air on Dec. 16, this time with a Christmas theme.

Then on Dec. 22, starting at 8 p.m. NBC will air the newest installment of Dr. Seuss’ classic Christmas tale, “The Grinch,” starring Benedict Cumberbatch.

Traditional favorites will also be returning, including the classic film “It’s A Wonderful Life,” which will air on Dec. 4 and Dec. 24. After the Christmas Eve presentation, the movie will be followed by “Christmas Eve Mass from St. Peter’s Basilica,” starting at 11:35 p.m.

Christmas Night, Dec. 25, will be devoted to all things Grinch, with the original animated classic, “How the Grinch Stole Christmas” at 8 p.m. and “How the Grinch Stole Christmas,” the 2000 live-action movie starring Jim Carrey and directed by Ron Howard, from 8:30-11 p.m.

Copyright 2021 Nexstar Media Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

community calendar

Latest News

More Top Stories

Local News

More Local News