A Charlie Brown Christmas (The Meaning of Christmas) – A Charlie Brown Christmas is the first prime-time animated TV special based upon the comic strip Peanuts, by Charles M. Schulz. It was produced and directed by former Warner Bros. and UPA animator Bill Meléndez, who also supplied the voice for the character of Snoopy.
Initially sponsored by Coca-Cola, the special aired on CBS from its debut in 1965 through 2000, and has aired on ABC since 2001. For many years it aired only annually, but is now telecast at least twice during the Christmas season. The special has been honored with both an Emmy and Peabody award.
A Charlie Brown Christmas is also one of CBS’s most successful specials, airing annually more times on that network than even MGM’s classic motion picture The Wizard of Oz.
Created by: Charles M. Schulz
Directed by: Bill Meléndez
Peter Robbins: Charlie Brown
Chris Shea: Linus van Pelt
Tracy Stratford: Lucille “Lucy” van Pelt
Kathy Steinberg: Sally Brown
Chris Doran: Schroeder and Shermy
Geoffrey Ornstein: Pig-Pen
Karen Mendelson: Patty (not the same as Peppermint Patty)
Sally Dryer: Violet Gray
Ann Altieri: Frieda
Bill Meléndez: Snoopy
Theme music composer: Vince Guaraldi
Composer: Vince Guaraldi
Country of origin: USA
Original airing December 9, 1965