Up until very recently, Hallmark and Lifetime were the two major players when it came to the Christmas movie game. Then, Netflix rolled in with its first Christmas movie in 2017. Now, two years later, it’s crowning itself the true king of Christmas flicks by announcing the Netflix Holiday Movie Universe. That’s right, all the Netflix holiday movies are connected and the streamer has confirmed it. The movies are already over-the-top in their ridiculously cheesy cheer, but this discovery pretty much puts them right over the edge.
It all started when an eagle-eyed viewer noticed that a prop from the 2017 movie A Christmas Prince shows up in this year’s The Knight Before Christmas. In the latter movie, Vanessa Hudgens’ s character’s sister gives her daughter a gift: an acorn ornament from the country of Aldovia. It looks exactly like the acorn ornament that plays a pivotal role in A Christmas Prince… which is set in Aldovia. That means that the two movies must exist in the same world. But, the connections don’t end there, and Hudgens is involved even more.
In the second sequel of A Christmas Prince, called A Christmas Prince: The Royal Baby, a quick shot of a map reveals that the fictional country of Aldovia is bordered by Belgravia. Later on in the movie, a character mentions how royals in Belgravia are marrying commoners. If Belgravia sounds familiar to you, you might be spending a little too much time on Netflix and also be exactly the kind of fan who will appreciate this deep dive. Belgravia is the fictional country in Hudgens’ other Netflix Christmas movie, The Princess Switch, which was released last year. With the two countries as neighbors, that means that the two movies took place just over the border from each other.
Since both the worlds of The Knight Before Christmas and The Princess Switch exist within the world of A Christmas Prince, does that mean that they’re characters will cross paths? In The Princess Switch, Hudgens plays both a Montengran duchess and an American baker, so does this revelation mean that her Knight Before Christmas character is a third lookalike? The possibilities for crossover events are truly mind-boggling.
Another detail that makes me feel like I’m solving a weird Christmas riddle is the fact that The Princess Switch includes a scene of two characters watching A Christmas Prince on Netflix. Do the characters see the movie as a fictional narrative about the totally real country of Aldovia? Or is A Christmas Prince a documentary about Belgravia’s bordering country? This is all a lot for me to take in during a night of light-hearted Christmas fun.
Luckily, Netflix has jumped in to provide a little context. The streamer tweeted out a chart that explains some of the connections between the various Christmas movie worlds.
Many of these movies were produced by MPCA, and the EVP of the company, Amanda Phillips Atkins, explained that it all started when they needed a movie to play in the background of 2018’s The Holiday Calendar. So, they turned to their own catalog of movies and then the connections grew from there. Atkins explained:
We planned to branch out from just having our characters watch each other on TV. We thought it would be a great opportunity to build out a whole universe, not just for Aldovia but for the whole world of our Christmas movies!
The Netflix Holiday Movie Universe will only expand in the future. In 2020, The Princess Switch will get a sequel called Switched Again and a movie called Operation Christmas will be released. No one knows exactly how these movies will fit in to the universe. But one things is for sure: fans will be ready to study every detail in them when they come out next year.
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