A Christmas Carol (2009)
A Christmas Carol (2009) poster
Directed by Robert Zemeckis
Produced by Jack Rapke
Steve Starkey
Robert Zemeckis

Jim Carrey
Gary Oldman
Colin Firth
Bob Hoskins
Robin Wright Penn
Cary Elwes

Music by Alan Silvestri
Cinematography Robert Presley
Editing by Jeremiah O'Driscoll
Distributed by Walt Disney Studios Motion Pictures
Release November 6, 2009
Running time 95 minutes
Country United States
Language English
Budget $175–200 million
Gross revenue $325,286,646

Disney's A Christmas Carol is a 2009 American 3D computer animated motion-capture holiday fantasy comedy-drama film written and directed by Robert Zemeckis. It is an adaptation of the Charles Dickens story of the same name and stars Jim Carrey in a multitude of roles, including Ebenezer Scrooge as a young, middle-aged, and old man, and the three ghosts who haunt Scrooge.

The 3D film was produced through the process of motion capture, a technique Zemeckis previously used in his films The Polar Express (2004), and Beowulf (2007).

A Christmas Carol began filming in February 2008, and was released on November 3, 2009 by Walt Disney Pictures. It received its world premiere in London, coinciding with the switching on of the annual Oxford Street and Regent Street Christmas lights, which in 2009 had a Dickens theme.

The film was released in Disney Digital 3-D and IMAX 3-D. It is also Disney's third film retelling of A Christmas Carol following 1983's Mickey's Christmas Carol and 1992's The Muppet Christmas Carol. The film also marks Jim Carrey's first role in a Walt Disney Pictures film, and his second Christmas film after Dr. Seuss' How the Grinch Stole Christmas(2000).


On Christmas Eve 1836, Ebenezer Scrooge, a bitter, miserable old moneylender at a London counting house, goes to the funeral of his former business partner, Jacob Marley. At first, he refuses to pay the undertaker, but eventually gives up the two pennies and takes another pair from Marley. He leaves the funeral parlor in a sour mood.

Seven years later, Scrooge is still the same; he holds everything that embodies the joys and spirit of Christmas in contempt. He refuses to visit his cheerful nephew, Fred, at his Christmas dinner party with his family, and complies when his underpaid employee Bob Cratchit begs to take the day off for his own poor family. On Christmas Eve, Scrooge begins to experience unusual incidents while entering his mansion, and is visited by the ghost of Jacob Marley, who is now forced to spend his afterlife carrying heavy chains forged from his own greedy ways. Marley warns Scrooge that he will suffer an even worse fate if he does not repent, and foretells that he will be haunted by three spirits that will help guide him.

The first spirit is the Ghost of Christmas Past, which shows Scrooge visions of his own past that take place around the Christmas season, reminding Scrooge of how he ended up the avaricious man he is now. In the visions, Scrooge spends much of his childhood neglected by his father over the holidays at boarding school until he is finally brought home by his loving sister Fan, who dies prematurely after giving birth to his nephew, Fred. Scrooge later begins a successful career in business and money lending, and becomes engaged to a woman named Belle, though she later calls off the engagement when his obsession with wealth drives her away. The elderly Scrooge is unable to bear witnessing these events again and extinguishes the spirit with its candle snuffer cap.

The second spirit is the Ghost of Christmas Present, which shows Scrooge the jolly happiness of his fellow men on Christmas Day. Among them are Fred, who playfully makes jokes with his family at Scrooge's expense, and the Cratchit family, who are barely able to make do with what little pay Scrooge gives them. Scrooge is touched by the Cratchits' sickly young son Tiny Tim and his commitment to the spirit of Christmas, and is dismayed to learn from the spirit that Tim may not have much longer to live. Before dying in an immense bell tower, the spirit warns Scrooge about the evils of "Ignorance" and "Want", which manifest themselves before Scrooge as two wretched children who grow into violent, insane individuals.

The third and final spirit is the Ghost of Christmas Yet to Come, which toys with Scrooge by chasing him through the streets of London on a carriage before showing him the final consequences of his greed. Scrooge sees in this future that he has died, though none mourn for him: Fred and his wife are elated to inherit his wealth; Scrooge's charwoman Mrs. Dilber is shown to have robbed him and given his belongings to a fence named Old Joe; and the men who attended his funeral had only gone for a free lunch. Tiny Tim is also shown to have died, leaving the Cratchit family to mourn him on Christmas. Scrooge is horrified and asks the spirit whether the images he has seen are sure to happen or can be changed. To little response, the spirit takes Scrooge to a dark and desolate graveyard and reveals Scrooge's own grave, showing his own date of death as December 25 of a forthcoming year, and forces Scrooge to fall into his empty coffin sitting in a deep grave atop the fires of Hell.

Scrooge suddenly awakens to find that he is alive, and also that it is Christmas Day, and that all three spirits have visited him over the course of one night. He joyously spots a child on the street and gives him some money to buy a prize turkey and have it delivered to the Cratchit home. He then attends his nephew's dinner, giving money to the poor and celebrating with his fellow men along the way. The next morning, when Bob Cratchit comes to work, Scrooge raises his salary after he has him deliver the money to the bank. As he steps out, Bob Cratchit affirms with the audience that Scrooge has become a kinder man and a second father to Tiny Tim, who survives thanks to Scrooge's charity.


  • Jim Carrey as:
    • Ebenezer Scrooge
    • Ghost of Christmas Past
    • Ghost of Christmas Present
    • Ghost of Christmas Yet to Come
  • Gary Oldman as:
    • Bob Cratchit
    • Jacob Marley
    • Tiny Tim, Cratchit's youngest son
  • Bob Hoskins as:
    • Mr. Fezziwig
    • Old Joe
  • Robin Wright as:
    • Belle
    • Fan Scrooge
  • Cary Elwes as:
    • Dick Wilkins, Scrooge's old roommate.
    • Mad Fiddler
    • Businessman #1
    • Portly Gentleman #1
    • Destitute Man #2
  • Julene Renee-Preciado as Adult Want
  • Fionnula Flanagan as Mrs. Dilber, Scrooge's charwoman.
  • Kerry Hoyt as Adult Ignorance
  • Molly C. Quinn as Belinda Cratchit.
  • Ryan Ochoa as:
    • Tattered Caroler
    • Beggar Boy
    • Young Cratchit Boy
    • Ignorance Boy
    • Young Boy with Sleigh
  • Daryl Sabara as:
    • Undertaker's Apprentice
    • Tattered Caroler
    • Beggar Boy
    • Peter Cratchit
    • Well-Dressed Caroler
  • Sammi Hanratty as:
    • Beggar Boy
    • Young Cratchit Girl
    • Want Girl
  • Lesley Manville as Bob Cratchit's wife.
  • Fay Masterson as:
    • Martha Cratchit
    • Guest #1
    • Caroline
  • Ron Bottitta as:
    • Tattered Caroler
    • Well-Dressed Caroler
  • Jacquie Barnbrook as:
    • Mrs. Fezziwig
    • Fred's Sister-in-Law
    • Well-Dressed Caroler
  • Leslie Zemeckis as Fred's Wife
Jim Carrey films

The Sex and Violence Family Hour (1983)  · Copper Mountain (1983)  · All in Good Taste (1983)  · Finders Keepers (1984)  · Once Bitten (1985)  · Peggy Sue Got Married (1986)  · The Dead Pool (1988)  · Earth Girls Are Easy (1989)  · Pink Cadillac (1989)  · High Strung (1991)  · Doing Time on Maple Drive (1992)  · Ace Ventura: Pet Detective (1994)  · The Mask (1994)  · Dumb and Dumber (1994)  · Batman Forever (1995)  · Ace Ventura: When Nature Calls (1995)  · The Cable Guy (1996)  · Liar Liar (1997)  · The Truman Show (1998)  · Simon Birch (1998)  · Man on the Moon (1999)  · Me, Myself & Irene (2000)  · Dr. Seuss' How the Grinch Stole Christmas (2000)  · The Majestic (2001)  · Bruce Almighty (2003)  · Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind (2004)  · Lemony Snicket's A Series of Unfortunate Events (2004)  · Fun with Dick and Jane (2005)  · The Number 23 (2007)  · Horton Hears a Who! (2008)  · Yes Man (2008)  · I Love You Phillip Morris (2009)  · A Christmas Carol (2009)  · Under the Sea 3D (2009)  · Mr. Popper's Penguins (2011)  · The Incredible Burt Wonderstone (2013)  · Kick-Ass 2 (2013)  · Anchorman 2: The Legend Continues (2013)  · Dumb and Dumber To (2014)  ·

Cary Elwes films

Liar Liar (1997)  · Saw (2004)  · Saw II (2005)  · A Christmas Carol (2009)  · Saw 3D (2010)  ·

Gary Oldman films

Hannibal (2001)  ·

Colin Firth films

Love Actually (2003)  · Kingsman: The Secret Service (2014)  ·

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