Tyrese Gibson has joined the cast of Netflix's The Christmas Chronicles 2, the much-anticipated sequel to last year's Kurt Russell-fronted holiday movie. The first film was a huge hit, guaranteeing that a sequel was picked up almost immediately, but they surprisingly did not rush it out to get this year's holiday viewings and instead will push it for next year. Kurt Russell and Goldie Hawn will reprise their roles as Santa and Mrs. Claus, with Darby Camp and Judah Lewis returning as Kate and Teddy Pierce. Lethal Weapon's Darlene Love has apparently also joined the cast, but there were no details about her role in the report.
Per The Hollywood Reporter, the story picks up after the first movie when Darby Camp's character, a little snowflake of a believer but now a cynical teenager, is unexpectedly reunited with Santa when a mysterious and magical being named Belsnickel threatens to destroy Christmas forever. Gibson will play the boyfriend of the kids' mother, portrayed by Kimberly Williams-Paisley.
Ted Sarandos, Netflix’s chief content officer, said in 2018 at the Global Media and Communications Conference in New York that 20 million people had watched the movie in its first week of release, making the most-watched opening of Kurt Russell's career.
"If every one of those [20 million streams] was a movie ticket purchase, that's a $200 million opening week," Sarandos noted. "Even movies that go on to $1 billion don't typically do that in the first week."
That is not how revenue works for streaming movies, obviously, but it is a useful metric nonetheless. Certainly the film had quite a cultural impact, as evidenced by it being all over social media on the week of its release last year.
The Christmas Chronicles is a holiday adventure from producer Chris Columbus (Home Alone, Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone) and director Clay Kaytis (The Angry Birds Movie), tells the story of sister and brother, Kate (Darby Camp) and Teddy Pierce (Judah Lewis), whose Christmas Eve plan to catch Santa Claus (Russell) on camera turns into an unexpected journey that most kids could only dream about. After staking out Santa’s arrival, they sneak into his sleigh, cause it to crash and nearly derail Christmas. As their wild night unfolds, Kate and Teddy work together with Santa – as you’ve never seen him before – and his loyal Elves to save Christmas before it’s too late.
The first film is available now on Netflix, and the sequel is aiming for a 2020 release. Gibson will also appear in Morbius, Sony's upcoming movie based on the Spider-Man villain of the same name starring Jared Leto.