• Tue. Jan 18th, 2022

Christmas Eve TV guide 2021: BBC, ITV and Channel 4s best films and shows

Dec 15, 2021

THE festive season is upon us, and that means tons of great TV is heading our way.

So grab a box of chocolates and get ready to settle in front of the telly this Christmas Eve.

Christmas Eve TV guide 2021

BBC One

The Gruffalo 10.50am

Animated adaptation of Julia Donaldson's best-selling children's book.

It tells the tale of a little mouse who takes a walk through the woods in search of a nut, only to encounter a fox, an owl and a snake who all want to eat him.

To escape their clutches, the quick-witted rodent creates an imaginary monster to scare away his attackers – but it turns out to be all too real.

Robbie Coltrane heads the voice cast as the Gruffalo, with James Corden as the Mouse and Rob Brydon, John Hurt and Tom Wilkinson as the predators

Brave 11.40am

A princess defies her mother's plans to secure peace by marrying her off to the son of one of their allies.

A witch provides the rebellious royal with a magic spell to change her fate, but the enchantment backfires disastrously when the queen is transformed into a bear.

Pixar's animated fantasy, with the voices of Kelly Macdonald, Emma Thompson and Billy Connolly

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Frozen 2pm

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Don't miss Disney's frozenCredit: Disney

A princess with the power to freeze anything she touches loses control of her abilities and plunges the kingdom into a perpetual winter.

She goes into hiding, but her sister remains determined that she can be saved from her own magic and sets off on a quest to find her, aided by a mountain man and a living snowman.

Disney animated fantasy adventure, with the voices of Kristen Bell and Idina Menzel.

Shaun the Sheep: The Flight Before Christmas 6pm

It's Christmas Eve at Mossy Bottom Farm, but Shaun's seasonal excitement turns to dismay when a farmhouse raid to get bigger stockings inadvertently leads to Timmy heading off to a Christmas market in the back of the farmer's truck.

Shaun sets out to get his cousin back before he becomes someone else's present. Animated adventure, with the voices of Justin Fletcher and Marcus Brigstocke

Top Gear: Driving Home For Christmas 8.30pm

Chris Harris, Paddy McGuiness and Freddie Flintoff aren't choosing their own cars, but instead choosing for one another.

After unwrapping their presents in the Welsh village of Bethlehem, the trio set off on a yuletide trek across Britain, stopping off to play the game of 'High-Speed Visual Charades' and deliver an enormous tree to the Unesco World Heritage city of Bath.

Then it's time for the presenters to visit the Top Gear test track, transformed into a winter wonderland of speed.

The Vicar of Dibley: The Christmas Lunch Incident 10.30pm

It is Christmas in Dibley, and vicar Geraldine is about to pay a heavy price for Christian kindness.

To avoid hurting anyone's feelings, she agrees to attend not one, not two, but three Christmas lunches.

Festive special from 1996 starring Dawn French.

ITV

Nativity Rocks! 11am

Chaos ensues when the staff and students of St Bernadette's Primary School audition for a coveted place in a spectacular rock musical competition.

Family comedy, starring Simon Lipkin, Craig Revel Horwood, Anna Chancellor and Celia Imrie.

Michael Bublé's Christmas in the City 2.30pm

The Canadian singer is commemorating the 10th anniversary of his chart-topping album Christmas.

To celebrate he is brining fans a festive special featuring a mix of comedy, music, and special guests.

Shrek The Halls 3.25pm

Festive animated short featuring the cast of the hit film series.

Shrek settles down for a quiet Christmas with Fiona and the babies, but Donkey and the ogre's other friends have their own ideas – and the party soon descends into chaos.

Featuring the voices of Mike Myers, Eddie Murphy, Cameron Diaz and Antonio Banderas.

Gino's Italian Family Adventure: A Festive Feast 6.30pm

Gino D'Acampo prepares a sumptuous Italian Christmas feast.

The top chef cooks up food for his wife Jessica, his children and his in-laws Elizabeth and Malcolm De Friend after a boat trip to the stunning Maddalena islands for lunch.

Royal Carols: Together at Christmas 7.30pm

Hosted by the Duchess of Cambridge, and Led by the world-renowned Westminster Abbey choir, the evening will be full of carols, both uplifting and moving, that make us feel joyous, reflective, warm and Christmassy.

There will also be guest star musical performances, films, readings and reflections about the importance of human connection and supporting one another during times of hardship and uncertainty. 

Channel 4

Christmas Encore 9.30am

A struggling actress falls in love with her director while playing a leading role in a production of A Christmas Carol.

However, the show will need a festive miracle to survive when the theatre comes under threat of closure.

A festive flick starring Maggie Lawson and Brennan Elliott.

Father Christmas 12.30pm

Festive animation based on the book by Raymond Briggs.

This sweet animation focuses on Santa's leisurely life on the other 364 days of the year, before he sets off for his annual gift-giving sleigh ride.

With the voice of the late Mel Smith.

It's A Wonderful Life 2pm

A hard-working, small-town businessman comes to think his life has been a complete waste of time and tries to commit suicide.

At the last minute, his guardian angel pays him a visit and makes him realise his true worth by showing him what would have happened to those around him had he never been born.

Fantasy drama, starring James Stewart, Donna Reed, Lionel Barrymore, Henry Travers, Beulah Bondi, Thomas Mitchell and Frank Faylen.

The Snowman 5pm

Raymond Briggs' festive favourite, which tells the story of a small boy whose snowman magically comes to life and whisks him off on the journey of a lifetime to the North Pole.

Howard Blake's score includes the award-winning song Walking in the Air, which was taken to number five in the charts by a young Aled Jones, but is here sung by Peter Auty.

Home Alone 6pm

When 8-year-old Kevin McCallister acts out the night before a family trip to Paris, his mother makes him sleep in the attic.

After the McCallisters mistakenly leave for the airport without Kevin, he awakens to an empty house and assumes his wish to have no family has come true.

But his excitement sours when he realizes that two con men plan to rob the McCallister residence, and that he alone must protect the family home.

Family fun starring Macaulay Culkin, Catherine O'Hara, Joe Pesci and Daniel Stern.

Information supplied by tvguide.co.uk.

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