Saturday, June 29, 2013

Christmas Doesn't Come from A Store!

Children's book cover.
      The Grinch first appeared in the 1957 story How the Grinch Stole Christmas, written and illustrated by Dr. Seuss, published as both a Random House book and in an issue of Redbook magazine. Almost a decade later in 1966, the story was adapted into a popular animated television special of the same name, which was directed by Chuck Jones. Boris Karloff serves as both the story's narrator and the voice of the Grinch. 
      In 1977, Seuss responded to the fan request for more Grinch tales by writing Halloween Is Grinch Night, a Halloween special that aired on ABC. This was followed in 1982, when Marvel green-lit The Grinch Grinches the Cat in the Hat, which was also produced by Dr. Seuss (though under his real name, Ted Geisel). Although not as successful as the original, the two spin-offs both received Emmy Awards. Several episodes of the 1996 Nick Jr. television show The Wubbulous World of Dr. Seuss featured the Grinch, this time in puppet form, a rare screen appearance for the character without being animated or illustrated. 
      A 2000 live-action feature film based on the story, directed by Ron Howard and starring Jim Carrey in the title role, was a major financial success, though it received many mixed reviews and holds a 53% rating on Rotten Tomatoes. A video game based on the film, simply entitled The Grinch was released on several consoles and PC in the same year. It was followed in 2007 with the release of a Nintendo DS version that went under the full title of the movie. 
     The Grinch was portrayed on the stage when the story was turned into a musical by the Children's Theater Company out of Minneapolis. The show made it to Broadway by way of a limited run in 2006, with Patrick Page playing the Grinch. 
      In mediums of television and cinema, the Grinch has been played or voiced by five actors. For the three animated adaptations, three actors were used: Boris Karloff in the original 1966 short, Hans Conried in Halloween is Grinch Night, and Bob Holt in The Grinch Grinches the Cat in the Hat (all three of them would die shortly after the production of their respective specials and would be unable to reprise the role). Anthony Asbury portrayed The Grinch in The Wubbulous World of Dr. Seuss, and Jim Carrey did so in the 2000 film adaptation. 

“Christmas doesn't come from a store, maybe Christmas perhaps means a little bit more....”
― Dr. Seuss, How the Grinch Stole Christmas

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