While Hallmark has announced a full slate of new movies, things are still a bit confusing when it comes to Lifetime’s 2023 Christmas lineup. Typically, Lifetime airs fewer new movies than Hallmark each Christmas, but it still has quite a full plate of films. And Lifetime’s Christmas movies are definitely the definition of “Hallmark like,” as they embody the same feeling and spirit of a Hallmark Christmas. Here’s what we know so far.
‘Ladies of the 80s: A Diva’s Christmas’ Will Air
The tentpole production for Lifetime this year is “Ladies of the 80’s: A Divas Christmas,” Deadline announced. The movie was filmed earlier this year and is about five soap opera divas reuniting for their soap opera’s final Christmas-themed episode. Old rivals resurface as the reunions commence, and sparks ignite between others.
The movie will star Loni Anderson, Morgan Fairchild, Linda Gray, Donna Mills, Nicollete Sheridan, Christopher Atkins, Patrika Darbo, Alec Mapa, Donna Mills’ daughter Chloe Mills, and more. An airdate hasn’t been shared yet, however.
‘Merry Liddle Christmas Vacation’ May Be Delayed
In March 2023, Lifetime announced a fourth installment of the “Merry Liddle” series this Christmas, called “Merry Liddle Christmas Vacation.” However, it was set to film in June and was likely delayed due to the writers and actors strike.
So now, it’s unclear if this will actually be seen this year. Twitter account @SleepyKittyPaw, known for sharing accurate information about Christmas movies, noted that with the strike, there isn’t much time to complete filming of this movie.
The synopsis that Lifetime announced for the movie reads: “This holiday season, the Liddle family is back together again, and ready to spend the holidays at a beautiful resort. Hoping to create new Christmas traditions, the Liddles are gathered to celebrate Jacquie and Tyler’s wedding anniversary and the twins’ birthday. But their holiday vacation is far from paradise with tensions mounting with Jacquie (Kelly Rowland) feeling Tyler is prioritizing his work over their family. Meanwhile Treena and Julian struggle to balance time with each other as Kiara and Chris navigate raising Kiara’s son. Marchelle and Wade are determined to keep Liddle Christmas traditions alive, even far from their homes, and despite the chaos of the season, the Liddles find a deeper understanding of each other, and all their small blessings complete their big Liddle family.”
Lifetime Will Likely Acquire Quite a Few Holiday Movies
The rest of the lineup will likely be announced soon, and it should include some acquisitions due to the writers and actors strike. SleepyKittyPaw on Twitter hypothesized that they’ll likely acquire some movies from Reel One for the 2023 season.
The account also noted: “My guess, and it’s just that, is if Kelly Rowland is willing in 2024, it could still happen, given how big 1-3 were, but Lifetime is going through exec shakeup and pulling way, WAY back on originals, especially Christmas, instead leaning into ‘ripped from the headlines’ titles.”
As for Reel One and other acquisitions for the Christmas holiday, some rumored possibilities (not yet confirmed) include these listed by Countdown Until Christmas. Note that the trailers will be spoiler-y since they are acquisition trailers.
Royally Yours, This Christmas
Originally called Swept Up in Christmas, this 2023 film’s description reads: “Single mother and luxury hotel housekeeper Neve Collins never meant to deceive guest of honor James Winter, the Prince of Genova, when he mistakes her for a wealthy hotel guest.”
It’s not yet confirmed to be picked up by Lifetime.
Christmas at the Chalet
The description reads: “When ex TV host and socialite Lex finds herself faced with the possibility of spending Christmas sharing a luxury chalet with her son, ex husband and his new girlfriend, she volunteers to work in the chalet to avoid things getting too close to home, while documenting her every move for a new wave of followers loving this new chapter of her life.”
The Holiday Proposal Plan
This is a Nicely Entertainment production. It’s not yet confirmed for Lifetime, and stars Tatyana Ali and Jesse Kove.
“When travel columnist Sonny Kravitz and her ex-boyfriend Kip are forced to team up to help their best friends Bree and Jarod get engaged in time for Christmas, the two of them decide to recreate 12 magical Christmas traditions from around the world in honor of how Jarod first courted Bree when they started dating. As they work together to remind their best friends why they fell in love in the first place, will they start to remember the same for themselves? Amongst a whimsical backdrop of Sonny’s parent’s snowy chalet in Big Bear Lake, they soon find themselves falling for each other once again.”
This is another Reel One film rumored for Lifetime, but it’s not yet confirmed.
The synopsis reads: “Harper, a teacher and aspiring illustrator, eager for her big break, is tapped to collaborate with Caleb, a demanding children’s book author whose celebrity is waning. When he insists on her working through Christmas week in a quaint small town in Colorado, she must use the town’s holiday celebrations to help break him out of his writer’s block.”
Stephanie Dwilson has been working in entertainment journalism for more than a decade. She's led teams of writers covering top TV show franchises like The Walking Dead, Game of Thrones, Rick and Morty, and more. She's a veteran Hallmark journalist and runs a 60,000-member Facebook group dedicated to the genre.
Stephanie is a licensed attorney and she has a master's in science in science and technology journalism. You can reach her at [email protected].