Christmas 2021: The Spirit of Cast & Character Guide


The Spirit of Christmas breaks free from the mold of feel-good holiday films, largely thanks to its cast of characters. Directed by David Jackson, The Spirit of Christmas fuses the warmth of the Christmas season with the mystery of death and the possibility of true love into one Lifetime movie. Despite not having enough critical reviews, the 2015 Christmas film has received mostly positive reviews from its audiences, praising the intrigue uncommon in most holiday movies. With its relatively smaller budget, The Spirit of Christmas has a relatively unknown cast, yet they make for a pleasurable watch.

At the center of the story is Daniel John Forsythe, a ghost who died 95 years ago but still haunts the Hollygrove Inn in corporeal form for 12 days every Christmas season. He meets impassioned lawyer Kate Jordan, whose quest of solving the mystery of a lifetime eventually results in a genuine connection. As Daniel and Kate solve both his decades-old haunting and her present-day corporate issues, they transcend death, the afterlife, and the supernatural.

The movie, created by Hallmark films’ writer Tracy Andreen, also incorporates themes of humanity beyond typical romance. As both Daniel and Kate seek out the answers to their lives’ biggest mysteries, they exhibit gallantry and agency in breaking the rules and defying expectations. Moreover, as seen in usual Christmas movies on Netflix and other streaming platforms, the main characters learn to selflessly reach out to one another while still discovering parts of themselves. These motifs are given a contemporary twist by the cast and characters of The Spirit of Christmas.

Also Read: Tonight’s Movie: Encanto (2021)

Daniel John Forsythe is the Spirit of Christmas haunting the Hollygrove Inn. Every year for almost a century, he takes on a human form, spends the 12 days preceding Christmas in his former residence, and then disappears. He is portrayed by Thomas Beaudoin, whose first major role was Thomas Champagne in the 2014 series Trauma. Beaudoin then appeared in various shows, including The Blacklist, Blue Moon, Victor Lessard, and ​​Top Dogs: Homicides.

Similar to Nina Dobrev’s character in Love Hard, Kate Jordan is an ambitious young woman who always puts her profession first. While her inability to love has already been underscored, she still gains her happily ever after in the end. Kate is played by Jen Lilley, whose acting credits mostly involve television romance films. She has also most notably starred in the shows Dating in LA and Other Urban Myths and Youthful Daze.

Walter Rafferty is the Hollygrove Inn’s caretaker. Although he has encountered Daniel before, he does not really know the secrets of the Forsythe family and just operates following their traditions. He is portrayed by Robert Walsh, who has already been in other Christmas movies like The March Sisters at Christmas and A Ring for Christmas. He has also been cast in the short films Late Summer, Threadbare, and A Well Designed Plan.

Brett Leigh, who had minor roles in the critically-acclaimed films The Social Network and Gone Girl, plays Harry Forsythe. He is Daniel’s cousin, whose livelihood becomes a focal point in the latter’s life and fate. Leigh had also written the short film American Day, which won a People’s Choice Award, and The Denodnaba Prologue, which earned an Award Of Recognition in the Accolade Competition.

Steven A. Miller as Charles Forsythe – Charles is Daniel’s brother who betrays his trust by marrying the love of his life, Lilly. He is played by Steven Miller, who is also known for his roles as Pete in Last Hours in Suburbia and Sven in The Girl in the Window.

Joanna Herrington as Molly – Joanna Herrington portrays Molly, a pub owner who later becomes Walter’s love interest. Aside from her supporting role in The Spirit of Christmas, she has also shared her talent in the television films Skels and The Spruces and the Pines, and in the hit show Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt.

Kati Salowsky as Lilly – Lilly is Daniel’s fiancée, whom he had to leave behind in order to make a living. She is portrayed by Kati Salowsky, who was seen in Survivor’s Remorse, American Crime, and Casting Ahead.

Bates Wilder as Sheriff Bell – Molly’s brother, Sheriff Bell comes to Kate’s rescue when she first encounters Daniel. Bates Wilder plays the character, aside from his parts in Joy, Tater Tot & Patton, and The Great War.

Christopher Tarjan as Oliver – Oliver is Kate’s hardworking boss, always pushing her to her professional limits. He is portrayed by Christopher Tarjan, who was also in American Hustle and The Sea of Trees.

Neil Casey as Mr. Murray – Mr. Murray is the Hollygrove Inn’s appraiser in The Spirit of Christmas. He is played by Neil Casey.

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