The House Santa Forgot

Creator: Richard Lasser
Age rating: Everyone
People stop believing in Santa, when he accidentally misses a sick little boy’s house.
Synopsis: It’s Christmas Eve, and the pressure’s really on CHRIS K. RINGLE. No, not SANTA. He’s got this, like he’s gotten every other Christmas for the past like, ever. But his son, Chris, who’s trying to make it on his own at a top branding firm, keeps losing clients. And his type A+ boss, BRONSON ARMBRUSTER will fire him unless he lands a big client before Christmas. And then Chris is handed a gift, when the impossible happens.

Santa forgets a house.

Not just any house. It’s the humble, East L.A. home of very ill little RAY BANDO, who lives with single dad RYAN. Ryan was a gainfully-employed school teacher, even named Teacher of the Year, until his son took ill. Now Ryan stays home to take care of Ray, and plays “bill roulette”, skipping some creditors so he can afford the meds. Somehow, they’ve managed a modest Christmas display in their burned out front yard, which Ray innocently hopes will garner them the Mayor’s Trophy for the Best Christmas Lights Ever.

Under normal circumstances, Santa should have still been able to find the Bando house, even though it was pitch-dark when the DWP shut off the juice for non-payment at midnight on Christmas Eve. But at the exact moment he flew over, a laser flash from Bronson Armbruster’s monumental Christmas Lights Show across town – which Bronson is sure will garner the Mayor’s Trophy -- temporarily blinded him. But no one realizes this except Bronson, who keeps the info on the down low.

The next day, KATE SKUPE, enterprising TV reporter is all over the story, broadcasting from the Bando’s house. The story goes viral and it isn’t long before the trolls threaten to undo all the good the elves have done for hundreds of years.

Chris agonizes over what’s happening to his father, who feels like a failure. But suddenly, Chris sees the mushrooming public relations disaster as an opportunity to not only save the Santa “brand”, but his own job. He entices billionaire poultry and egg producer PETER BUNNIFER, with the idea of investing millions into upgrading or replacing Santa’s obviously dilapidated sleigh, oft-patched sack, and aging reindeer, (which must have contributed to the failure), in exchange for the naming rights to everything Santa. He’ll own the best-recognized brand in the world.

Chris brings Peter, MRS. BUNNIFER and his PR men to the North Pole where they’re greeted by Santa and MRS. CLAUS. They almost sell Santa on the idea. But at the last minute, Santa backs out. The Bunnifers return home empty-handed. And Bronson fires Chris.

When Bronson’s wife EILEEN and his bratty kids BARON AND BRITNEY see little Ray on Kate’s broadcast, their hearts go out to him, and against their patriarch’s will, they head to East L.A. to share their Christmas gifts. Bronson’s got to stop them, so he offers Chris his job back, with a raise, if he intercepts his family. Chris refuses, so Bronson goes there himself. But when he sees his family gathered happily with Ray, he, too, has a change of heart, and reveals that his lightshow blinded Santa, making Ray’s the house Santa forgot.

One Year Later.
At the North Pole, a robust, healthy Ray helps Chris, Santa and Mrs. Claus prepare for Christmas. It seems that his illness has no effect on Ray when he’s at the North Pole. In a few years, he might even raise a beard.

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