Fifty years ago today, A Charlie Brown Christmas made its debut on CBS despite skepticism from network executives who thought its minimalist animation, jazz soundtrack, Charlie Brown’s lament against commercialization and Linus reciting from The Gospel of Luke would be an unmitigated disaster.
But Peanuts creator Charles M. Schulz stood his ground as did Ed Levitt, one of the animators who told executives, ‘You guys are crazy. This is going to run for 100 years,’ “
As producer Lee Mendelson recently said, “We’re halfway there.”
Not only was A Charlie Brown Christmas a ratings juggernaut, no Christmas is complete without it.
The soundtrack was put together by The Vince Guaraldi Trio and included Guaraldi’s most famous composition “Linus & Lucy”, a video of which I have posted above for your amusement, entertainment and memories.