'A Very Murray Christmas' Celebrity Cameos Prove Bill Murray Has The Coolest Famous Friends
Grinches can kindly step to the left, because the peppermint-scented, snow-covered holiday season is most definitely here. Sure, the themed television programming has been in full swing since Thanksgiving (and even before), but there was one holiday special in particular that I’d been waiting for in order to go full-festive: A Very Murray Christmas . The Netflix original is filled with celebrity cameos and is exactly something one would expect Bill Murray to do, in that it’s wholly un-expected, and that’s the man’s style. And, in a nod to the old-fashioned, fireside singalong Christmas specials of the ‘60s, Murray invited some fancy friends to the party.
The special was directed by Sofia Coppola, who also directed Murray in Lost In Translation back in 2003. Other members of the extended Coppola-Schwartzman family are in front of the camera too, plus a few SNL vets, and a pop star, among others. They pop up throughout the course of the special (plot: Murray is supposed to be performing a live holiday show, but New York is locked down by a blizzard), to have a drink, sing a song, or have their Christmas spirit reinvigorated. Here’s a comprehensive list of every famous guest star who appears in A Very Murray Christmas.
1. Paul Shaffer
A Very Murray Christmas is heavy on the music, and thus, requires the services of a bang-up accompanist. Who better than former Late Show bandleader Paul Shaffer?
2. Amy Poehler
Poehler's perky determination is put to the test when Murray insists he doesn't feel like putting on a show. As one of the special's "producers," the Parks And Recreation coins the motivational phrase, "Everything that's fun is always hard."
3. Julie White
Tony winning actress Julie White is Poehler's co-producer. The two are distracted from the task at hand (getting Murray onstage) when they think that their shared crush might be on the phone with him. ("Oh my god, is it Clooney? Is it Clooney?")
4. Michael Cera
If there's a villain in this overwhelmingly sincere show, it's Michael Cera. The Arrested Development star is a pushy would-be manager who uses insults ("I don't even know how to express my shame.") to goad Murray into being his client.
5. Chris Rock
Rock comes through the Carlyle Hotel's revolving door at exactly the wrong time. Desperate for a friendly face to join him on stage, Murray guilts the comedian into a duet of "Do You Hear What I Hear" complete with forest green turtlenecks and holly corsages.
6. Jenny Lewis
Murray's once rumored girlfriend Jenny Lewis plays a soulful cocktail waitress who joins the actor for an intimate rendition of "Baby, It's Cold Outside."
7. Rashida Jones
Renaissance woman Rashida Jones dons a wintery wedding gown as a bride whose special night is ruined by the snow. Murray kindly tries to cheer her up, the best way he knows how. ("You look like you'd like to have your photograph taken with me.")
The band Phoenix, fronted by Coppola's husband Thomas Mars, appears as hotel chefs who are distraught to see all their creations ruined in the blizzard-related power outage. They make the best of a bad situation by covering this unreleased Beach Boys holiday track, which is now available as a Phoenix single.
9. Jason Schwartzman
Schwartzman sits in with Phoenix on drums and plays the role of Jones's disillusioned groom. The holiday spirit saves their relationship, and he proposes to his bride-to-be again.
10. Maya Rudolph
"Love's got an up button and a down button, and you decide which one to push." Rudolph delivers this incredible line and slays a jazzy version of "Christmas (Baby Please Come Home)."
11. David Johansen
Murray's Scrooged co-star, also known as Buster Poindexter (when he's feeling "Hot Hot Hot" — see what I did there?), drops in as a bartender who's swept up in the impromptu cheer.
12. George Clooney
The A-List cherry on this Christmas sundae is undoubtedly George Clooney, who shows up during a dream sequence to provide dapper tuxedo realness, dry martinis, and some competent back-up for Murray on "Santa Claus Wants Some Lovin'."
13. Miley Cyrus
Miley Cyrus fits right into the fantasy sequence too, since she looks and sounds like a dream. From her Santa Claus pumps to her spine-tingling rendition of "Silent Night," the singer definitely won some new fans from Murray's camp with this cameo.
Basically, Bill Murray throws the best Christmas party ever with the best guests, and this special should be an annual affair.
Images: Ali Goldstein/Netflix; Giphy (11)