2020s

Know the Cast: ‘A Boy Called Christmas’

A Boy Called Christmas Cast - Every Performer and Character in the Netflix Movie

Netflix’s A Boy Called Christmas cast features Maggie Smith, Henry Lawfull and Zoe Colletti. This info article contains minor spoilers for Gil Kenan’s 2021 movie. Check out more streaming guides in Vague Visages’ Know the Cast section.

A Boy Called Christmas tells the origin story of Father Christmas. In Finland, a young boy named Nikolas grieves the death of his mother and thinks about a magical land known as Elfhelm. Meanwhile, the King offers a reward for anyone who can bring hope to the community. When Nikolas’ father accepts the challenge, Nikolas begins his own journey and comes face to face with real elves and fairies. Here’s every main performer and character in A Boy Called Christmas, a 2021 holiday movie from filmmakers Gil Kenan and Ol Parker.

A Boy Called Christmas Cast: Maggie Smith as Aunt Ruth

A Boy Called Christmas Cast - Maggie Smith as Aunt Ruth

Character Profile: The narrator. She babysits a group of children and tells them about Santa’s origin story. Aunt Ruth believes that grief is the price one must play for love, and she has a unique connection to the main players in her magical tale.

Smith’s Resume: Jean Brodie in The Prime of Miss Jean Brodie (1969), Charlotte Bartlett in A Room with a View (1985), Constance Trentham in Gosford Park (2001), Professor McGonagall in the Harry Potter Movie Franchise (2002-2011), Violet Crawley, Dowager Countess of Grantham in Downton Abbey (2010-15)

A Boy Called Christmas Cast: Henry Lawfull as Nikolas

A Boy Called Christmas Cast - Henry Lawfull as Nikolas

Character Profile: The main protagonist of Aunt Ruth’s story, a Finland native who lives in the woods. He searches for the mythical Elfhelm and intends to bring hope to his community. Nikolas receives a life epiphany while searching for a missing elf named Little Kip.

Lawfull’s Resume: Petit-Gervais in Les Misérables (2018), Feature Debut in A Boy Called Christmas

A Boy Called Christmas Cast: Toby Jones as Father Topo

A Boy Called Christmas Cast - Toby Jones as Father Topo

Character Profile: An Elfhelm elder. He uses drimwick on Nikolas as a hope spell. Father Topo believes in always helping those who are in trouble.

Jones’ Resume: Dobby in the Harry Potter Movie Franchise (2002-10), Percy Alleline in Tinkor Tailor Soldier Spy (2011), Arnim Zola in the MCU (2011-), Claudius Templesmith in The Hunger Games Movie Franchise (2012-15), Sir William Ingram in The Electrical Life of Louis Wain (2021)

A Boy Called Christmas Cast: Sally Hawkins as Mother Something

A Boy Called Christmas Cast - Sally Hawkins as Mother Something

Character Profile: The ruler of Elfhelm. She introduces a new set of rules for elves and bans Christmas. Mother Something met Nikolas’ mother in the past.

Hawkins’ Resume: Poppy in Happy-Go-Lucky (2008), Ginger in Blue Jasmine (2013), Maud Lewis in Maudie (2016), Elisa Esposito in The Shape of Water (2017), Maggie in Spencer (2021)

A Boy Called Christmas Cast: Kristen Wiig as Aunt Carlotta

A Boy Called Christmas Cast - Kristen Wiig as Aunt Carlotta

Character Profile: Joel’s sister. She is tasked with looking after Nikolas. Carlotta’s rotten attitude inspires her nephew to look for Elfhelm.

Wiig’s Resume: Saturday Night Live Cast Member (2005-12), Annie in Bridesmaids (2011), Maggie Dean in The Skeleton Twins (2014), Barbara Minerva in Wonder Woman 1984 (2020), Sharon Gordon Fisherman/Star in Barb and Star Go to Vista Del Mar (2021)

A Boy Called Christmas Cast: Michiel Huisman as Joel

A Boy Called Christmas Cast - Michiel Huisman as Joel

Character Profile: Nikolas’ father. He hopes to claim a reward by embarking on the “King’s Quest” for hope. Joel reunites with his son at Elfhelm.

Huisman’s Resume: Sonny in Treme (2010-13), Daario Naharis in Game of Thrones (2014-16), Shepherd in The Other Lamb (2019), Alex Sokolov in The Flight Attendant (2020), Stephen in Kate (2021)

A Boy Called Christmas Cast: Zoe Colletti as The Truth Pixie

A Boy Called Christmas Cast - A Boy Called Christmas Cast: Zoe Colletti as The Truth Pixie

Character Profile: An Elfhelm native. She carries hewlip leaves for pranks and uses her powers to create improvised explosives. The Truth Pixie assists Nikolas and plays an important role in Aunt Ruth’s story.

Colletti’s Resume: Tessie in Annie (2014), Ruth-Ann in Wildlife (2018), Desiree in Skin (2018), Stella Nicholls in Scary Stories to Tell in the Dark (2019), Dakota in Fear the Walking Dead (2020-)

A Boy Called Christmas Cast: Stephen Merchant as Miika

A Boy Called Christmas Cast - Stephen Merchant as Miika

Character Profile: Nikolas’ pet mouse. The animal learns to speak through a one-word-at-a-time teaching process. Miika makes jokes while tagging along for Nikolas’ magical journey.

Merchant’s Resume: Co-Creator of The Office (2001-03) — Also, Caliban in Logan (2017), Hugh in Fighting with My Family (2019), Deertz in Jojo Rabbit (2019), Michael Morgan in Locked Down (2021)

A Boy Called Christmas Cast: Joel Fry as Matt

A Boy Called Christmas Cast - Joel Fry as Matt

Character Profile: A father who enlists Aunt Ruth to look after his children. He is surprised when Christmas gifts suddenly fill his home.

Fry’s Resume: Lu’kibu in 10, 000 BC (2008), Hizdahr zo Loraq in Game of Thrones (2014-15), Rocky in Yesterday (2019), Bryan in Love Wedding Repeat (2020), Jasper in Cruella (2021)

A Boy Called Christmas Cast: Jim Broadbent as King

A Boy Called Christmas Cast - Jim Broadbent as King

Character Profile: A Finnish King. He wants the miserable residents of his community to find hope. King gives Nikolas half a crown and later reunites with him for an aerial adventure.

Broadbent Resume: Harold Zidler in Moulin Rouge! (2001), Boss Tweed in Gangs of New York (2002), Tom in Another Year (2010), Denis Thatcher in The Iron Lady (2011), Archmaester Ebrose in Game of Thrones (2017)

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Netflix’s A Boy Called Christmas cast also includes Rune Temte (Eddie the Eagle, Captain Marvel), Saikat Ahamed (Aladdin, Pennyworth), Perveen Hussain (Ackley Bridge, Years and Years), Rishi Kuppa (Come Away, The North Water) and Philip Lenkowsky (Amadeus, A Knight’s Tale).

Q.V. Hough (@QVHough) is Vague Visages’ founding editor.