All is bright with Scream Factory’s restoration of ‘SILENT NIGHT, DEADLY NIGHT’


Preston Barta // Features Editor


Rated R, 79 minutes.
Director: Charles E. Sellier Jr.
Cast: Robert Brian WilsonLilyan ChauvinGilmer McCormickCharles DierkopToni NeroDanny Wagner and Linnea Quigley
Available Tuesday, Dec. 5 on Blu-ray through and at Movie Trading Co.

Bumping elbows with other shoppers as you chase the latest on-sale item, visiting with unfriendly family members, burning your Christmas dinner — the holidays can be a horrifying time of the year. (Excuse me. Sorry, mom. The most wonderful time of the year.) It’s no wonder there’s an appeal to watch Christmas horror movies during this festive month. There’s something really nice about spicing up your eggnog with holiday movies that are simply to die for.

1984’s SILENT NIGHT, DEADLY NIGHT catalyzed a franchise and redefined the subgenre in many ways. As ridiculous a movie as it sounds – often narrowed down to a story of a man dressed as Santa Claus who goes on a killing spree – there is a solid foundation laid before our central character becomes the seasonal slasher. It all begins when a young Billy (Danny Wagner) is left traumatized after seeing his parents murdered by a man (Charles Dierkop) in a Santa suit and years of abuse at an orphanage by Mother Superior (Lilyan Chauvin). Instead of taking pointers from Batman and using his fear for good, Billy uses his fear to terrorize others by becoming St. Nick, only he ain’t jolly.

SILENT NIGHT, DEADLY NIGHT is truly a dark story. What so easily could have been a movie where a Jason or Michael Myers-esque soulless killer executes all the poor folks on the naughty list, there’s a nice blend of well-developed psychology behind its characters and fun B-movie horror. It’s a collector’s edition to own if you’re a fan of Christmas horror films or are in need of a killer stocking stuffer.

[Grade: B-]

Extras: The Scream Factory release includes an unrated version of the film (at 85 minutes), behind-the-scene featurettes and interviews with the cast and filmmakers, three different audio commentary tracks, poster and still gallery, and original trailers and TV spots. Check out the full list below, along with details on the deluxe limited edition of the film that comes with an exclusive action figure.

Robert Brian Wilson is Billy. Courtesy of Shout Factory.

DISC ONE: Theatrical Version

  • NEW 4K scan of the original camera negative
  • R-rated theatrical trailer and VHS trailer
  • TV spots
  • Radio spot

DISC TWO: Extended Unrated Version

  • NEW 4K scan of the original camera negative with standard definition inserts
  • NEW “Slay Bells Ring: The Story Of SILENT NIGHT, DEADLY NIGHT” – featuring interviews with Writer Michael Hickey, Co-Executive Producers Scott J. Schneid And Dennis Whitehead, Editor/Second Unit Director Michael Spence, Composer Perry Botkin, and actor Robert Brian Wilson
  • NEW “Oh Deer!” – an interview with Linnea Quigley
  • NEW “Christmas in July – SILENT NIGHT, DEADLY NIGHT Locations – Then And Now
  • NEW audio commentary with actor Robert Brian Wilson and Co-Executive Producer Scott J. Schneid
  • Audio commentary with Michael Hickey, Perry Boykin, Scott J. Schneid, and Michael Spence
  • Audio interview with Director Charles E. Sellier, Jr. From Deadpit Radio (Extended Version)
  • Santa’s Stocking of Outrage
  • Poster and still gallery

Special Offer for DELUXE EDITION: Order from and get an EXCLUSIVE LIMITED EDITION NECA ACTION FIGURE and an EXCLUSIVE LIMITED EDITION ROLLED POSTER of our newly commissioned cover art, PLUS get it SHIPPED FREE (Standard Shipping)! Limited to 2,000 copies.

About author

Preston Barta

Hello, there! My name is Preston Barta, and I am the features editor of Fresh Fiction and senior film critic at the Denton Record-Chronicle. My cinematic love story began where I was born: off planet on the isolated desert world of the Jakku system. It's there I passed the time scavenging for loose parts with my good friend Rey. One day I found an old film projector and a dusty reel of the 1975 film JAWS. It rocked my world so much that I left my kinfolk in the rearview (I so miss their morning cups of green milk) to pursue my dreams of writing about film. It wasn't long until I met two gents who said they would give me a lift. I can't recall their names, but one was an older man who liked to point a lot and the other was a tall, hairy fella. They got me as far as one of Jupiter's moons where we crossed paths with the U.S.S. Enterprise. Some pointy-eared bastard said I was clear to come aboard. He saw that I was clutching my beloved shark movie and invited me to the "moving pictures room" where he was screening the 1993 film JURASSIC PARK to his crew. He said my life would be much more prosperous if I were familiar with more work by the god named Steven Spielberg. From there, my love for cinema blossomed. Once we reached planet Earth, everything changed. I found the small town of Denton, TX, and was welcomed into the Barta family. They showed me the writings of local film critic Boo Allen. He became my hero and caused me to chase a degree in film and journalism. After my studies at graduate of the Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry, I met some film critics who showed me the ropes and got me into my first press screening: 2011's THE GREEN LANTERN. Don't worry; I recovered just fine. MAD MAX: FURY ROAD was only four years away.