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Frost puts the chill in Father Christmas

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Doctor Who fan Nick Frost couldn't contain his excitement when he landed a role in the show's Christmas special. Although he did doze off on set, as JEANANNE CRAIG finds out


SOME actors might be a bit of-offended to be offered the part of roly-poly, white-bearded Santa Claus at the age of just 42, but Nick Frost isn't one of them.

The Hot Fuzz actor and Doctor Who fan was "chuffed to bits" to play Father Christmas in the show's upcoming festive special, despite needing constant repainting of his beard - "because my own ginger gene is so strong".

"I think being an English stocky actor, you're eventually going to be cast as Santa and Henry VIII and Winston Churchill, so it's just one of the three I've ticked off," he admits, on his last day on set in Cardiff. "It's just ageing, isn't it? It happens."

Besides, his Santa isn't the cuddly, traditional, mince pie-muncher we know and love. He's a bit meaner and moodier than that.

"We [usually] only see one side of Father Christmas, which is the nice man giving out toys to good children. If you're going to play him as a human being, he has to have every emotion, like we do. So you see him cross and you see him joyously happy and miffed," Frost explains.

"There is a lot of 'Ho Ho Ho' and some sleigh work, but we wanted to make him slightly edgy at points, a bit like a gangster, I guess. I wanted people to be kept in the dark as to what this man's intentions are. Is he good, is he bad? Is he there to help the Doctor and [his companion] Clara?" In fact, this Santa has some issues with the Doctor - which gave Frost the chance to spar with Peter Capaldi, who was announced as the successor to Matt Smith in the titular role last year.

"I think me and Peter found a thing early on where, for whatever reason, they know each other," says Frost. "They have history and beef, and it comes over in every scene we do."

The actor, who admits he had to "silence my internal fan-boy squeals" every day on set, approves of Capaldi's depiction of the Doctor.

"My age will tell M you I'm a Tom Baker Doctor, but my passion for Doctor Who was reignited in the latter half of David Tennant's reign. Then I loved Matt Smith, I thought he was amazing," he gushes."

Frost, who lives in London with his Swedish wife Christina and their three-year-old son, was delighted by his costume for the shoot.

"The little glasses are Richard Attenborough's, that he wore on Miracle On 34th Street [the 1994 version, in which the late star played Kris Kringle], which is kind of amazing," he says, smiling. I dropped them the other day. I was 15ft up on a hydraulic lift on my sleigh and we'd been there so long I nodded off, and when I woke up, the glasses were not there.

"But they were fine. I think the spirit of Richard Attenborough held them together..."

One thing Frost won't be doing this December 25 is sitting down to watch Doctor Who with his son, whose name he likes to keep private.

"I'm not going to let him watch it because I think it will blow his three-year-old mind. I don't think he'll understand or be able to separate that I'm not Father Christmas at this point," Frost says.

The Doctor Who Christmas special is on BBC One on Christmas Day My passion for Doctor Who was reignited in the latter half of David Tennant's reign.

"Then I loved Matt Smith, I thought he was amazing.

GRAPHIC: The Doctor Who Christmas special is on BBC One on Christmas Day Peter Capaldi as The Doctor and Nick Frost as Santa Claus from Doctor Who Christmas Special

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  • APA 6th ed.: Craig, Jeananne (2014-12-20). Frost puts the chill in Father Christmas. Birmingham Evening Mail p. TV Guide, p. 3.
  • MLA 7th ed.: Craig, Jeananne. "Frost puts the chill in Father Christmas." Birmingham Evening Mail [add city] 2014-12-20, TV Guide, p. 3. Print.
  • Chicago 15th ed.: Craig, Jeananne. "Frost puts the chill in Father Christmas." Birmingham Evening Mail, edition, sec., 2014-12-20
  • Turabian: Craig, Jeananne. "Frost puts the chill in Father Christmas." Birmingham Evening Mail, 2014-12-20, section, TV Guide, p. 3 edition.
  • Wikipedia (this article): <ref>{{cite news| title=Frost puts the chill in Father Christmas | url=http://cuttingsarchive.org/index.php/Frost_puts_the_chill_in_Father_Christmas | work=Birmingham Evening Mail | pages=TV Guide, p. 3 | date=2014-12-20 | via=Doctor Who Cuttings Archive | accessdate=15 October 2019 }}</ref>
  • Wikipedia (this page): <ref>{{cite web | title=Frost puts the chill in Father Christmas | url=http://cuttingsarchive.org/index.php/Frost_puts_the_chill_in_Father_Christmas | work=Doctor Who Cuttings Archive | accessdate=15 October 2019}}</ref>