Stars, from Saoirse Ronan to Eddie Murphy, share their holiday thoughts and plans | Inquirer Entertainment
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Stars, from Saoirse Ronan to Eddie Murphy, share their holiday thoughts and plans

By: - Columnist
/ 12:01 AM December 26, 2019

(First of 2 parts)

LOS ANGELES—Merriest Christmas to all of you, dear readers! —– Emilia Clarke wraps her presents while watching “Love, Actually” on Christmas Eve; Saoirse Ronan plans to watch “Little Women” again; Eddie Murphy looks forward to having all his 10 children, their kids and one granddaughter together.


Aside from Emilia, Saoirse and Eddie, other stars—including Jennifer Hudson, Jon Hamm, Bette Midler, Stellan Skarsgard and Chris Cooper—shared their holiday thoughts and plans with us.

Saoirse Ronan


The “Little Women” actress chatted about her plans during the holiday break:


Watching “Little Women,” probably (laughs). It’s such a Christmas film. The book opens with the girls waking up on Christmas day and they say, Christmas won’t be Christmas without any presents—it’s so dreadful to be poor. But they sacrifice their breakfast for a poor woman down the road who has nothing. There’s a lot of virtues and messages in the earlier section of the book. We’ve tried to incorporate that into the film, as well. It’s just a really beautiful message.

The whole film is a family film. It’s about family, and it’s about people coming together. It looks pretty, and everyone looks so lovely in their outfits, so yeah, I think people will love it at Christmas.

As to what will I be doing for Christmas, I’ll just be eating, probably. We finished this in mid-December last year and I remember all wishes being, I’m going to eat this, then I’m going to eat that, and then I’m going to watch this, and then I’m going to drink that. We all just completely indulged last Christmas and we’ll probably do the same this Christmas.

Eddie Murphy


For the star of “Dolemite Is My Name,” holidays are all about the children. And at 58, he has quite a lot of them:

I love Christmas. For my family and my kids, Christmas has always been a big deal. This year, the family of Paige (Butcher, his fiancée) is coming from Australia—her sister, nieces and nephews, all the kids, her mother and father. I have a 10-month-old baby, a 3-year-old (daughter) and a new granddaughter, so it’s going to be all these. Christmas is the best when there are kids around. I have little kids. I’m looking forward to Christmas. We got a big tree up.

We don’t sing. But everybody comes together and it’s a beautiful thing to see. It’s fun to watch the kids ripping their gifts open on Christmas morning and all that stuff. I love Christmas. It’s my favorite holiday.



The star of the timely film, “Last Christmas,” inspired by the song of the same title by Wham!’s George Michael and Andrew Ridgeley, told us about one Christmas Day tradition that she and her family continue even with the passing of her dad, Peter Clarke, in 2016:


I probably spent only one Christmas outside of home. Christmas is very much a family thing for me. My parents always worked abroad and away quite a lot, my brother and I were in boarding school, so Christmas was the one time we could all come together. So that’s what we do. It’s always a good moment.

My Christmas tradition is to wrap all the gifts on Christmas Eve, because I have been working up until Christmas Eve and it’s the only time I get (laughs). My family is not allowed in because they will see what I am wrapping.

I’ll put on a Christmas movie while I wrap all the presents. And for that, I normally get out Netflix and scroll through everything and spend like an hour trying to figure out what to watch. But in the end, it is always the same, and it’s “Love, Actually.”Our Christmas Day tradition is—we have done this my entire life and will continue to do it—on Christmas morning, even though my brother and I are in our 30s, we climb into my parents’ bed with the dog and open all the Christmas stockings and have our breakfast, tea and stuff. So, Christmas morning is pajamas until about 2 in the afternoon.

I know. My brother was like, they (her boyfriends) are not allowed. I was like, what are they going to do, just stay downstairs while we are having a lovely time (laughs)? We need a bigger bed.

I’m not very good at getting presents. I’m much better at giving them. The best present I ever got—oh, Christ—it must have been when I was really little.Now that I am an adult, people get weird about me and presents because they are like, you can afford nicer things than I can buy you (laughs), so what am I going to get you? I am going to sound really soppy, but my best mate is an artist. The work that he gives me is inspired by conversations that we’ve had or by stuff that we’ve lived through together. Those are the best presents that I’ve ever got.

And then the worst present I ever got—Christ, you are going to put this in print (laughs)—I don’t think there is one because I’m pretty grateful for any gift that I’m going to get. The worst present I would ever get is someone being mean. I don’t care about stuff enough for me to care about it being a bad gift.

“Last Christmas” was always my Christmas song. I’m not just saying this because of this movie. It really was always—it’s just the perfect Christmas song. It’s always that song that comes on when you are at a Christmas party. It’s very wistful, but it’s also quite optimistic about what the next year will bring. So that really is what the movie is based on.

Jon Hamm


The “Mad Men” actor, starring in Clint Eastwood’s “Richard Jewell,” talked about where he is spending Christmas and what he thinks about the New Year’s Eve celebration:

I usually spend Christmas with my aunt and uncle in Montecito (California). My uncle has two daughters and two grandsons. So, it’s a very fun, lively Christmas morning whenever you have a 2-year-old and a 4-year-old attacking presents. That’s pretty fun.

I’ve grown out of the attacking presents phase, but I still can appreciate it in others. So, that’s probably where I will be for Christmas.

And then afterward, I don’t know. New Year’s (eve) is always just an excuse for a bunch of people to get drunk and be ridiculous. I’m usually asleep by 12:30 a.m., like, OK, Happy New Year. Good night. By the way, I’m perfectly happy to put 2019 into the rear-view mirror. I am looking forward to 2020—20/20 vision! INQ(Conclusion tomorrow)

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TAGS: Eddie Murphy, Emilia Clarke, Jon Hamm, Saoirse Ronan
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