The holidays are coming, and there’s no better way to spend them than watching wintery movies while cuddled up on the couch. Of course, a hot drink in hand or a big, fluffy blanket doesn’t hurt either! The only problem these days, though, is how to decide what to watch. We at PlayStar couldn’t choose, so we turned to US audiences’ data to help us discover what the best Christmas movies are in the US.

What’s your state’s favorite festive movie? The results may surprise you!

Start your journey!


Favorite festive movie per state

Brilliantly, the data tends to reflect a love of seeing one’s own state in a wintery wonderland (whatever that means to you). Perhaps you recognize the street where the main characters are walking down in the snow, or you could imagine yourself being trapped in your parents’ house as a kid because you’ve driven through the neighborhood the movie’s set in.

Some examples of patriotic states and their top movies include:

  • Washington - Sleepless in Seattle
  • Illinois - Home Alone (set in Chicago)
  • Connecticut - Christmas in Connecticut
  • Missouri - Meet Me in St. Louis
  • Minnesota - Jingle All the Way (filmed in the Twin Cities area)

Hover over the map to see which is the most popular Christmas movie in each state

Perhaps your state doesn’t have its own Christmas movie, but you may subconsciously favor one that’s in the same region!

For example, Vermont were also big fans of Jingle All the Way, and quite a few Southern states loved Edward Scissorhands. Perhaps something about the separate northern or southern climates evokes similar Christmassy feelings to those of your hometown.

On the other hand, some states had unrelated favorites. New Jersey and Pennsylvania were lovers of Jack Frost, while Florida was very into Die Hard.

Most popular holiday movies across the US

1988’s Die Hard was also the favorite across the US! Eight states named the franchise’s debut as their all-time Christmas movie. Others argue whether it should be classed as a festive movie at all, but if eight whole states think so, we’re happy to let that slide.

Other popular movies were Home Alone and Edward Scissorhands, which won the votes of four states each. Elf and Christmas with the Kranks were next on the list.

There were quite a few individual favorites by different states, such as Scrooged, Nightmare before Christmas, Meet Me in St. Louis, and It’s a Wonderful Life! If anything, this shows how many great movies are out there to love at Christmas time.

Hover over the bubbles to show Christmas movie’s popularity across the US

Who’s feeling festive?!

Now that we’ve given you the low-down on festive movies to delve into this winter, we wanted to find out which of you will be most likely to get into the Christmas spirit.

We used Google trends to identify which states were feeling most ‘Christmassy’.

Ranking at the top was Indiana, which is not too surprising since they have a town named Santa Claus which hosts Christmas-themed attractions year-round! Citizens of Indiana must constantly be feeling ready for Christmas. Next on the list were Ohio, Kentucky, and Utah. Each has their mixture of traditions, from streets (and zoos) of Christmas lights to Christmas tree forests and Dickens Christmas Festivals. It’s no wonder these states feel so festive when there are so many fun Christmas activities to get stuck into!

Hover over the map to see how ‘Christmassy’ your state is

The Christmas spirit-ometer

Who is the most beloved movie Santa?

As the faces of the holiday season, actors playing Santa fill big boots and even bigger beards to bring these beloved characters to life on the silver screen.

We’ve ranked some of the most iconic movie Santas to find out who the favorite Father Christmas is. These rankings are based on various metrics such as IMDB ratings, Google Trends, box office revenue, audience review, and net worth, normalized to produce a comprehensive score on a 0-100 scale.

Tom Hanks took the top spot, earning an impressive overall score of 79 for his role in the animated Christmas classic ‘The Polar Express’. Next on the list was Tim Allen, renowned for his role as Scott Calvin in ‘The Santa Clause’ saga. It was his role in the first movie released in 1994 that secured him the second spot in our rankings, with an overall score of 63.

David Harbour and Billy Bob Thornton shared the third position for the best Santa, both scoring 50 for their respective roles in ‘Violent Night’ and ‘Bad Santa.’