The NBC network has picked up an hour-long holiday special entitled How Murray Saved Christmas. The special is based on the book of the same name from Emmy award winning writer and executive producer, Mike Reiss. The animated comedy that chronicles a cranky deli owner Murray Kleiner and his bah humbug, who is forced to fill in for Santa one Christmas, but decides that he likes playing the jolly fellow. The special is scheduled to air in December 2014.
“Murray is the perfect project to get audiences into the holiday spirit, and Mike’s impressive comedic background makes him a great choice to put all the pieces together,” said NBC Entertainment President Jennifer Salke. Composers behind the special’s music will be Oscar-nominated talent, Walter Murphy, who was recently commended for his work on the blockbuster film Ted with Mark Wahlberg and Mila Kunis. Murphy also boasts an Emmy win for Seth MacFarlane’s ‘Family Guy’.
Reiss’s credits include Fox’s ‘The Simpsons’ as well as his noted work as the creator of ‘The Critic’. In addition, Reiss has worked on ‘Not Necessarily the News’, ‘The Tonight Show with Johnny Carson’, ‘It’s Garry Shandling’s Show’ and ‘The Simpsons Movie’.
‘How Murray Saved Christmas’ comes by way of Universal Television with Rough Draft Animation (The Simpsons Movie, Futurama) set to serve as the animation studio behind the holiday special.