What’s on TCM: December 2013

Astaire and Rogers in Swing Time2013 is drawing to a close and TCM is ending the year in style!  If you like musicals, this is your kind of month.  First of all, Fred Astaire is December’s Star of the Month!  So put on your dancing shoes every Wednesday night and get ready for lots of fabulous dance scenes.  On December 18, there will be a tribute to Betty Comden and Adolph Green so there will be a lot of excellent musicals on during the day.  New Year’s Eve will also be very musical with rock and roll oriented movies during the day and the That’s Entertainment! series playing all night long.

This theme for December’s edition of Friday Night Spotlight is The Hollywood Costume, which is curated by costume designer Deborah Nadoolman Landis.  If you enjoyed participating in or reading posts from the Fashion in Film Blogathon, I’m sure you’re going to love this series.

Remember how last month I said that the Story of Film series was finishing up?  Yeah, I have no idea what I was thinking when I said that.  It definitely ends this month.  I apologize for my mistake.

Since it’s December, there will be lots of classic Christmas movies to look forward to.  On December 30th, TCM will also be honoring some stars we lost in 2012 but were not already honored with special tributes including Deanna Durbin, Annette Funicello, and Karen Black.

So, without further ado, let’s take a closer look at the schedule…

December 2:  It’s a Story of Film night with The Hudsucker Proxy at 8:00 PM, Gladiator at 10:00 PM, The Story of Film: Chapter 14 at 12:45, The Piano at 2:00 AM, and Reservoir Dogs at 4:15 AM.

December 3:  If you love gangster movies, this is the night for you!  White Heat at 8:00 PM, The Roaring Twenties at 10:00 PM, The Big Heat at 12:00 AM, Key Largo at 2:00 AM, and The Petrified Forest at 4:00 AM.

December 4:  Fred Astaire dances into the spotlight with Flying Down to Rio at 8:00 PM, his interview with Johnny Carson at 9:45 PM, The Gay Divorcee at 10:00 PM, Roberta at 12:00 AM, Follow the Fleet at 2:00 AM, The Story of Vernon and Irene Castle at 4:00 AM, and Second Chorus at 5:45 AM.

December 5:  Happy birthday to director Otto Preminger!  Angel Face at 9:00 AM, The Man With the Golden Arm at 10:45 AM, Anatomy of a Murder at 12:45 PM, Advise & Consent at 3:30 PM, and Bunny Lake is Missing at 6:00 PM.

December 6:  In tonight’s Friday Night Spotlight, we look at Travis Banton’s work in Blonde Venus at 8:00 PM and Cleopatra at 10:00 PM, Orry-Kelly’s work in Casablanca at 12:00 AM and Auntie Mame at 2:00 AM, and Adrian’s designs in The Women 4:30 AM and Anna Karenina at 7:00 AM on December 7th.

December 7:  If you’re staying up late and like crazy movies about LSD, don’t miss Blue Sunshine at 2:00 AM and The Big Cube at 4:00 AM.

December 8:  The Christmas classics In the Good Old Summertime at 10:00 AM and It Happened on Fifth Avenue at 12:00 PM.  Later in prime time is a Debbie Reynolds Christmas movie double feature with Susan Slept Here at 8:00 PM and Bundle of Joy at 10:00 PM.

December 9:  The Story of Film is back with To Be and to Have at 8:00 PM, Russian Ark at 10:00 PM, Climates at 12:00 AM, The Story of Film: Chapter 15 at 2:00 AM, and Memories of Murder at 3:15 AM.

December 10:  Lots of great stuff on today!  Manhattan Melodrama at 6:00 AM, Dark Victory at 7:45 AM, Watch on the Rhine at 9:45 AM, Leave Her to Heaven at 12:00 PM, and Guess Who’s Coming to Dinner at 6:00 PM.  Guest programmer Patton Oswalt selected tonight’s movies, including Kind Hearts and Coronets at 8:00 PM, 3:10 to Yuma at 10:00 PM, The Wind Journeys at 11:45 PM, and Aaltra at 2:00 AM.

December 11:  Fred Astaire returns with You’ll Never Get Rich at 8:00 PM, You Were Never Lovelier at 9:45 PM, The Band Wagon at 11:30 PM, Silk Stockings at 1:30 AM, Three Little Words at 3:45 AM, and The Belle of New York at 5:30 AM.

December 12:  Two more with Fred Astiare, Yolanda and the Thief at 7:00 AM and Ziegfeld Follies at 9:00 AM.  Then it’s happy birthday to Frank Sinatra with Guys and Dolls at 11:00 AM, The Tender Trap at 1:30 PM, It Happened in Brooklyn at 3:30 PM, Some Came Running at 5:30 PM. Tonight’s theme is Directors on Film with Cinema Paradiso at 8:00 PM, Sullivan’s Travels at 10:15 PM, Two Weeks in Another Town at 12:00 AM, and What Price Hollywood? at 2:00 AM.

December 13:  Friday Night Spotlight is back with a look at Irene Sharaff’s work in Funny Girl at 8:00 PM and Who’s Afraid of Virginia Woolf? at 10:45 PM, Anthea Sylbert’s designs for Chinatown 1:00 AM and Carnal Knowledge at 3:15 AM, and Walter Punkett’s work in Adam’s Rib at 5:00 AM and Forbidden Planet at 6:45 AM.

December 14:  It’s a Claudette Colbert triple feature with The Palm Beach Story at 8:00 PM, Tomorrow is Forever at 9:45 PM, and Midnight at 11:45 PM.

December 15:  A very fun day!  A Night at the Opera at 6:00 AM, Arsenic and Old Lace at 8:00 AM, Holiday Affair at 12:15 PM, The Bishop’s Wife at 2:00 AM, Bringing Up Baby at 4:00 PM, The Thin Man at 6:00 PM, The Man Who Came to Dinner at 8:00 PM, and The Lemon Drop Kid at 10:00 PM.

December 17:  Update: TCM has changed their daytime schedule to honor the late Eleanor Parker.  The Very Thought of You at 6:00 AM, Of Human Bondage at 7:45 AM, The Woman in White at 9:45 AM, Caged at 11:45 AM, Scaramouche at 1:30 PM, Interrupted Melody at 3:30 PM, and Home From the Hill at 5:15 PM.  Tonight we have several of my favorite holiday movies.  Holiday Affair at 8:00 PM, Remember the Night at 9:45 PM, and Bachelor Mother at 1:45 AM.  TCM will also be premiering the more modern holiday hit, 2006’s The Holiday, at 11:30 PM.  I’ve never seen The Holiday, but I look forward to seeing it for the first time.

December 18:  During the day, TCM will be paying tribute to Betty Comden and Adolph Green with Good News at 6:00 AM, The Barkleys of Broadway at 7:45 AM, On the Town at 9:45 AM, Singin’ in the Rain at 11:30 AM, The Band Wagon at 1:15 PM, It’s Always Fair Weather at 3:15 PM, and Bells Are Ringing at 5:00 PM.  And in case you haven’t had enough musicals, Fred Astaire is back in Broadway Melody of 1940 at 8:00 PM, Easter Parade at 10:00 PM, Royal Wedding at 12:00 AM, A Damsel in Distress at 2:00 AM, and Finian’s Rainbow at 3:45 AM.

December 19:  No Christmas season would be complete without some variations on A Christmas Carol.  There’s Scrooge (1970) at 8:00 PM, A Christmas Carol (1951) at 10:00 PM, Scrooge (1935) at 11:30 PM, A Christmas Carol (1938) at 1:00 AM, and A Carol For Another Christmas at 2:15 AM.

December 20:  Happy birthday to Irene Dunne!  No Other Woman at 6:00 AM, Ann Vickers at 7:00 AM, The Age of Innocence at 7:00 AM, Sweet Adeline at 10:00 AM, Show Boat at 11:30 AM, The Awful Truth at 1:30 PM, Joy of Living at 3:15 PM, Love Affair at 5:00 PM, and My Favorite Wife at 6:30 PM.  For Friday Night Spotlight, we look at the costume designs of Jean Louis in Send Me No Flowers at 8:00 PM and The Big Heat at 10:00 PM, Anna Hill Johnstone’s work in Dog Day Afternoon 11:45 PM and The Stepford Wives 2:00 AM, and the incomparable Edith Head’s designs in Sullivan’s Travels at 4:15 AM and The Seven Little Foys at 6:00 AM.

December 22:  Christmas in Connecticut at 2:00 PM, Now Voyager at 4:00 PM, Gigi at 6:00 PM, The Shop Around the Corner at 8:00 PM, In the Good Old Summertime at 10:00 PM, and the silent version of Ben-Hur at 12:00 AM.

December 23:  TCM really goes into high gear with the Christmas movies with Little Women (1933) at 8:00 AM, Love Finds Andy Hardy at 10:00 AM, In the Good Old Summertime at 12:00 PM, The Lemon Drop Kid at 2:00 PM, 3 Godfathers at 2:00 PM, Scrooge (1970) at 6:00 PM, Meet Me in St. Louis at 8:00 PM, The Bells of St. Mary’s at 10:00 PM, Little Women (1949) at 2:15 AM, and Tenth Avenue Angel at 4:30 AM.

December 24:  Merry Christmas Eve!  Surprise, surprise, today is full of even more Christmas movies.  Beyond Tomorrow at 6:00 AM, Susan Slept Here at 7:30 AM, Meet Me in St. Louis at 9:15 AM, The Man Who Came to Dinner at 11:15 AM, A Christmas Carol (1938) at 1:15 PM, The Shop Around the Corner at 2:30 PM, It Happened on Fifth Avenue at 6:00 PM.  Robert Osborne’s Christmas Eve selections include Christmas in Connecticut at 8:00 PM, Sun Valley Serenade at 10:00 PM, I’ll Be Seeing You at 11:45 PM, The Bishop’s Wife at 1:15 AM, and Holiday at 3:15 AM.

December 25:  Merry Christmas!  During the day, TCM will be showing lots of religious themed movies like The Big Fisherman at 7:30 AM, Ben-Hur at 10:30 AM, The Robe at 2:30 PM, King of Kings at 5:00 PM.  Then you can spend the evening with Fred and Ginger in Top Hat at 8:00 PM, Swing Time at 10:00 PM, Shall We Dance at 12:00 AM, Carefree at 2:00 AM, and The Barkleys of Broadway at 3:30 AM.

December 27:  In this week’s Friday Night Spotlight, we see the designs of Edward Stevenson in The Magnificent Ambersons at 8:00 PM and Out of the Past at 9:45 PM, Ann Roth’s work for Silkwood at 11:30 PM and Klute at 2:00 AM, and Helen Rose’s designs in The Bad and the Beautiful at 4:15 AM and Annie Get Your Gun at 6:15 AM.

December 28:  Gaslight at 8:00 PM, Suspicion at 10:00 PM, and Leave Her to Heaven at 12:00 AM.

December 29:  Woman of the Year at 8:00 AM, Gunga Din at 10:00 AM, The Lady From Shanghai 12:15 PM, The Thomas Crown Affair at 2:00 PM, Forbidden Planet at 6:00 PM, High Society at 8:00 PM, and Mogambo at 10:00 PM.  Update: Today’s schedule has been changed to honor both Joan Fontaine and Peter O’Toole.  Joan’s daytime tribute includes Blonde Cheat at 6:30 AM, The Women at 7:45 AM, Born to be Bad at 10:15 AM, Ivanhoe at 12:00 PM, The Constant Nymph at 2:00 PM, Suspicion at 4:00 PM, and Rebecca at 5:45 PM.  Peter O’Toole takes over at 8:00 PM with Lawrence of Arabia, Peter O’Toole: Live from the TCM Classic Film Festival at 12:00 AM, Goodbye Mr. Chips at 1:00 AM, and My Favorite Year at 3:45 AM.

December 30:  Happy birthday to Russ Tamblyn!  Take the High Ground at 6:00 AM, Seven Brides for Seven Brothers at 8:00 AM, The Fastest Gun Alive at 10:00 AM, The Young Guns at 11:30 AM, Don’t Go Near the Water at 1:00 PM, Tom Thumb at 2:45 PM, Follow the Boys at 4:30 PM, and Son of a Gunfighter at 6:15 PM.  Tonight TCM pays tribute to some of the stars we lost during 2013.  There’s Deanna Durbin in It Started With Eve at 8:00 PM, Annette Funicello in Bikini Beach at 9:45 PM, Eileen Brennan in The Cheap Detective at 11:30 PM, Jonathan Winters in The Loved One at 1:15 AM, Karen Black in Five Easy Pieces at 3:30 AM, Julie Harris in East of Eden at 5:15 AM, and John Kerr in Tea and Sympathy at 7:15 AM.

December 31:  Happy new year’s eve!  It’s an all-day party with Go, Johnny, Go! at 9:30 AM; Let’s Rock at 10:45 AM; It’s Trad, Dad! at 12:15 PM; Rock Around the Clock at 1:45 PM; Twist Around the Clock at 3:15 PM; Jailhouse Rock at 4:45 PM; Viva Las Vegas at 6:30 PM; That’s Entertainment! at 8:00 PM; That’s Entertainment! Part 2 at 10:30 PM; That’s Entertainment! Part 3 at 12:45 AM; That’s Dancing! at 3:00 AM; and the documentary Musicals Great Musicals: The Arthur Freed Unit at MGM at 5:00 AM.


  1. It all sounds wonderful. I’m looking forward to Yolanda and the Thief – there is a remarkable dance number in it called Coffee Time. I wish I was home. alone. all. December, just doing as I please and watching these wonderful movies one after another!

  2. I know there should be thousands of different movies that TCM could shown. Why is it that you always show the same movies over and over again? It is time for a change. It is time to get someone there who actually cares about what movies are being shown on this station or before long no one will be watching. I will be one of those people. After all I do love watching this station. So please take in consideration what I am saying.

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