The Facts of Life cast will reunite for a Lifetime Christmas movie special. Starring Charlotte Rae, Lisa Whelchel, Kim Fields, Mindy Cohn, and Nancy McKeon, The Facts of Life was a groundbreaking spinoff of Diff’rent Strokes. Premiering in 1979, The Facts of Life became one of the longest-running series in the 1980s, airing in a golden age of television with sitcoms like Cheers, Happy Days, Family Ties, and The Golden Girls.
Created by Dick Clair and Jenna McMahon, The Facts of Life follows housemother Edna Garrett (Rae), as she nurtures, educates, and reasons with students at an all-female boarding school. Hailed from different backgrounds, housemates spoiled rich girl Blair (Whelchel), naive Tootie (Fields), impressionable Natalie (Cohn) and tomboy Jo (McKeon) form a bond overseen by Edna’s wisdom. Tugging on the viewer’s heartstrings with issues such as drug addiction, eating disorders, parental abandonment, and peer pressure, The Facts of Life was considered an anomaly for its time. The series garnered massive attention when it cast Deadwood’s Geri Jewell, an actress with cerebral palsy, as a series regular. Running for nine seasons, The Facts of Life featured guest stars such as George Clooney, Helen Hunt, Juliette Lewis, Molly Ringwald, and Seth Green. Not limited to a half-hour format, the series spawned three made-for-TV movies.
Now, the leading ladies from The Facts of Life are set to deliver life lessons, yet again. According to Yahoo, Whelchel, Fields, Cohn, and McKeon are teaming up to star in Lifetime film You Light Up My Christmas. Featuring the old cast, the movie will tell a new story. You Light Up My Christmas will follow Emma (Fields) who returns to her hometown. Chaos ensues for Emma when she discovers the town has lost its holiday cheer and embarks on a mission to reignite the festive spirit while encountering an old love interest (Adrian Holmes).
Produced by Fields, You Light Up My Christmas will feature an ice-skating rink named after Rae. Sadly, the actress passed away last year. Stocked full of The Facts of Life inside jokes, the film will premiere on December 1. Lifetime plans to dominate the market on holiday movies with a star-studded slate of films. Featuring a holiday special and 30 holiday movie premieres, It’s A Wonderful Lifetime starts on October 25 and continues through December 25.
The holiday season is the perfect time of year to allow cheesy dialogue, touching moments and outrageous plots to take over in films such as A Christmas Prince and The Christmas Chronicles. Reuniting familiar faces from a beloved sitcom into a Christmas movie is the perfect holiday treat. Dubbing themselves “sisters”, the cast will no doubt easily rekindle their onscreen chemistry and tell a new story while paying tribute to The Facts of Life.