BY JUDY SLOANE
Front Row Features
HOLLYWOOD-‘Tis the season, and CBS is raring to go with a bunch of new Christmas movies. The first to premiere is “Reindeer in Here,” based on the award-winning book of the same name by Adam Reed. It’s a one-hour animated special which tells the story of how Blizzard the reindeer, who has one antler that is significantly smaller than the other, along with his friends save the future of Christmas. Some of the well-known actors voicing the characters are Adam Devine (Blizzard,) Jim Gaffigan (Santa,) Henry Winkler (Smiley) and Candace Cameron Bure (Pinky.) Bure is no stranger to appearing in Christmas movies, which include “Journey Back to Christmas,” “The Christmas Contest,” “Christmas Town” and “Christmas on Candy Cane Lane.”
Adam Reed and Candace Cameron Bure joined the TV Critics Association to talk about their new holiday special which debuts on November 29, 2022 at 9:00 p.m. PT/ET and will stream live and on demand on Paramount+.
Q: Adam, why did you decide to write the book?
Adam Reed: When I sat down six years ago to write this book, it was out of a need for my own family that I couldn’t find a positive Christmas tradition that also didn’t stress me out as a parent. And so I sat down and tried to write a story that I felt would be unique and different and you would fall in love with the characters at the most magical time of year and hopefully someday become a Christmas classic.
When I [met] with my illustrator, and we were looking at different reindeers, there was one reindeer that we focused on specifically, and that one reindeer had one antler smaller than the other. And that is the hero of our story, Blizzard or Blizz. The reason is because he’s a different reindeer. And every child at some point in their life feels different, because being different is normal, and our film celebrates the uniqueness of every child and of course shows that Christmas wishes really do come true.
Q: Candace, how did you find the voice for Pinky the reindeer?
Candace Cameron Bure: They initially were like, “We really want your voice.” I think my voice is distinctive. I hear a lot from people on the street that they’re not sure if it’s me when they see me, but as soon as they hear my voice, they instantly know that it’s me. And so they really did want my voice. So it was just really working on the delivery of the lines and the little nuances of how we wanted her to be.
Pinky’s that friend that tells it straight, but she has a little bit of a motherly quality to her or that big sister quality, that she’s still gentle in speaking the truth.
Q: Adam, what has been your favorite part about bringing the book to life?
Reed: That’s a great question. Truly, that we get the opportunity for everybody in the world to see this. For every child at the most magical time of year to celebrate their uniqueness and their differences, to me, is the most important thing. And the fact that this is happening is still surreal.
Q: Candace, you do a lot of holiday films. Has this been a case of you wanting to do them because you love Christmas so much? Or do you find that when people start talking about Christmas projects, they think of you automatically?
Bure: Christmas truly is my favorite holiday of the year. I’m a woman of faith, so there’s no bigger holiday to celebrate than Christmas. I love that I’ve become synonymous with Christmas because of the movies that I’ve done over the past 15 years. So it’s a great joy for me.
I’ve dreamed of being a part of a classic animated movie for a very long time. And when I was offered and pitched this project, it was even more magical for the fact that it was Christmas and it’s for children. I’m a mom of three and I’ve written several children’s books myself.
So [it was] just the culmination of everything, a no‑brainer. I’m happy to be a part of people’s Christmas traditions hopefully for years to come.
Q: Adam, any last thoughts about the movie?
Reed: This movie, we have created not only to be a Christmas classic that I hope outlives us all, but also is meant for the whole family. This is not just for children. You can sit down with your entire family, and the adults will pick up on things that children don’t, and maybe vice versa. We’re excited to share this tradition with the world.