‘The Man Who Invented Christmas’ shows the invention of ‘A Christmas Carol’

Christmas traditions like lighting up a Christmas tree feel like they’ve been around forever, but a lot of them are all thanks to Charles Dickens. Without turning this into too much of a history lesson, Dickens’ novel “A Christmas Carol” inspired how we celebrate Christmas.

That’s why the title of this movie “The Man Who Invented Christmas” seems so fitting. We sat down with the cast to find out how this invention came to be.

Ah, Ebenezer Scrooge — the man at the center of one of the all-time Christmas classics, Charles Dickens’ “A Christmas Carol.”

Christopher Plummer (as Ebenezer Scrooge): “Humbug.”

“The Man Who Invented Christmas” is set in 1843 and tells the story behind the story.

Justin Edwards (as John Forster): “So he’s had a couple of flops — well, who hasn’t?”

Dan Stevens plays Dickens, but not the legendary author we know now — here he’s struggling to make ends meet and writes “A Christmas Carol” in just six weeks based on people in his own life.

Dan Stevens: “Somebody who is often talked about on a pedestal and to take a slightly irreverent look at them and realize the humanity and the sense of great humor and comedy and also great pathos and tragedy.”

Dan Stevens (as Charles Dickens): “It’s about a miser. And on Christmas Eve, he meets some kind of supernatural guides.”

Ian McNeice (as Chapman): “Does it have a title?”

Dan Stevens (as Charles Dickens): Humbug and Miser’s Lament. Christmas Ghost Story. Christmas Song. Christmas Ballad … something like that.”

A lot of the Christmas traditions we have now were popularized by “A Christmas Carol.” Things like exchanging gifts, giving to charity, even the phrase “Merry Christmas.”

The film’s director says they weren’t looking to start any new traditions with this movie.

Bharat Nalluri, director: “I don’t think we were hoping to achieve anything more than you go in, have a great time for a couple of hours and get into the spirit of Christmas.”

Scrooge is played to perfection by Oscar winner Christopher Plummer.

Dan Stevens: “He turned 87 on our set and he’s as sharp as anything, and has a real wit and sparkle about him, which is complete in his ‘Scrooge.'”

Now, I know it isn’t even Thanksgiving yet, and we’re still more than a month away from Christmas, but there’s nothing wrong with getting into the Christmas spirit a little early.

As Dan Stevens puts it — this movie is “full of Christmas joy and a bit of fun.”

Dan Stevens (as Charles Dickens): “Merry, Merry Christmas to one and all. Merry Christmas.”

“The Man Who Invented Christmas” plows into theaters Wednesday.

Copyright 2017 Sunbeam Television Corp. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.