Movie Pitch: “Don’t Shoot Me Santa,” a Christmas Jukebox Musical

Every year for 10 straight years, the Killers put out a new original Christmas song. I think that’s something special. In a time when “new” Christmas songs are just covers of “All I Want For Christmas is You” or “Santa Claus is Coming to Town” or “Last Christmas” or what have you, the Killers were cranking out songs like “Don’t Shoot Me Santa” and “A Great Big Sled” and “Boots” and “Joel the Lump of Coal.” Of course, these songs don’t seem to get much play time on popular radio stations, but stations that play alternative rock might play these songs around Christmas. I just think that if every time a radio DJ said to himself “I’m going to play Paul McCartney’s ‘Wonderful Christmastime'” he or she instead played one of the Killers’ Christmas songs, the world would be a better place. (But I think the world would be a much better place if they never played “Wonderful Christmastime” again.)

A couple of the songs have this recurring evil Santa character, who is less concerned with giving gifts to nice kids as much as he wants to bring the naughty kids to justice. He’s given a cute little three-song arc where he goes from homicidal to jolly.

Here’s my pitch: make that into a feature length film.

I got a little spiteful because earlier this year the Killers announced that they were done recording new original Christmas songs, but then I realized I ought to be on my hands and knees thanking them for these delightful and frankly underappreciated songs. So, to the Killers I say this: If you’re done recording original Christmas songs, I understand. You’ve made some wonderful music, and you should be proud. But if not, I have a proposal for you: take these songs that you’ve written, maybe record a few more, and then make a jukebox musical.

You could make an absolutely crazy, off-the-wall, genre-defying movie out of that. It’d be a western-musical-horror-comedy-holiday movie. (The inclusion of comedy would be necessary, there’s no way you could play a movie about a killer Santa as a serious horror movie.) And then you could find some way to work in all the other songs like “Christmas in L.A.” or “Boots” or “Joel the Lump of Coal.” It could be this nice little arc that the singer goes on where he redeems himself and goes from the nice list to the naughty list.

Plus there’s the setting to consider. Since The Killers are from Las Vegas, they tend to set a lot of their music videos in the Mojave Desert, which I think would be a fascinating place to set a Christmas movie. It would give the whole movie a neat Western aesthetic.

I just feel like this would be a bold, fun, crazy Christmas movie. Plus, imagine titling the movie “Don’t Shoot Me Santa.” I think that’s got the potential to be a new Christmas classic. Then again, I suppose we’ll never find out.


Happy holidays, everyone!

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