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10 problems with the first draft of the “Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer” TV Special

“Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer” has been a TV Christmas classic for the past 47 years.  It is one of the longest running holiday specials, but as you are about to see, the show almost never got the approval needed to make it to air.  Just in time for the holidays, we got our hands on the notes studio executives sent to the writers on the first draft of “Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer.”

Hey guys, NBC is on us to get this show on next month.  Before we can air this, we need you to make the following changes:

Santa’s profanity-laced tirade during this scene, one of many cut from the first draft of the film

p. 1 – Why is it so hard for Sam the Snowman to move?  Every time he scoots forward the script calls for him to “grunt heavily.” This would likely disturb the children.  Let’s just have him move effortlessly.

p.3  – The scene where Rudolph is born is way too graphic.

p.4 – The script reads “Rudolph’s nose is bright. His mother and father take cover it is so bright. We likely won’t be able to shoot Rudolph directly because it will damage all of the cameras.”  We’re talking about clay here.  We control how bright it is.

p. 5 –  Hermey tells the head elf that he doesn’t want to make toys, he wants to “go to Vietnam to fight Charlie.” The idea of an adorable elf fighting in the Vietnam War is not one we want to include in this holiday special, not to mention the fact that this may severely date the film.

p. 9 – The makeout scene between Rudolph and Clarice seems much too intense for a children’s TV special.

p.13 – Let’s cut the line where Rudolph informs the taunting reindeer that he’ll be back and then everyone will pay.  Obviously we’ll also be cutting the line here where Hermey reminds everyone that he’s going to Vietnam.

p. 16 – Here, Yukon Cornelius shouts “gold” and throws his pick in the air.  We like that.  What we don’t like is that it takes 5 minutes for the pick to return to the ground and that you insist the audience wait the entire time along with the characters as they gaze towards the sky. We are also puzzled by your instructions here which read “DO NOT go to commercial break during this scene!!!!”

p.18 – The Island of Misfit Toys.  Let’s maybe not go to such lengths to point out that all of these toys are gay.

p.25 – The Abominable Snow Monster can’t even talk.  How does everyone know he’s an atheist?

p. 30 – What the heck?! It’s a foggy night, Rudolph has returned to save the day and Santa tells him Christmas is canceled and we go to credits?!  What was the point of the film?  We have to follow the plot of the song.  We’ve repeatedly instructed you to do so.

Make the above changes and we’ll begin filming.

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About Tim Kochenderfer

I'm about yay-high and weigh about yay pounds

Discussion

2 thoughts on “10 problems with the first draft of the “Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer” TV Special

  1. I guess a dentist is the next “worst” thing.

    Posted by Sara | December 20, 2011, 8:20 am

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