10.7k readers

29 Actors Who Have Played Santa Claus

Updated October 11, 2018 10.7k views29 items

Who are the most famous actors who have played Santa Claus? You’d be amazed at how many incredibly well-known actors have donned the red suit and belted out that jolly laugh, bringing generations of children joy. The actors listed here all played Santa Claus in major motion pictures or made-for-television films.

If someone asks you to name your favorite stars who played Santa Claus, who comes to mind? You might think of "that guy in the '90s version of Miracle on 34th Street." Well, "that guy" is Lord Richard Attenborough, and yes, he was Kris Kringle in the 1994 movie adaptation of this classic Christmastime film. But did you know that the Santa Claus in the original 1947 Miracle on 34th Street won an Academy Award for his performance? Edmund Gwenn took home the Best Supporting Actor Oscar - and he's the only actor to win the coveted golden statue for playing Santa.

From the big screen to the small, famous actors have been playing Santa Claus for decades. Enjoy this look at the best of the best here!

  • John Goodman
    Photo: Warner Bros. Television

    John Goodman was Santa Claus in 2006's The Year Without a Santa Claus.

    More John Goodman 

    #63 of 273 The Best (Male) Actors Working Today#113 of 1,017 The Best Actors in Film History#541 of 904 Celebrity Death Pool 2021

  • Ed Asner
    Photo: New Line Cinema

    Ed Asner played Santa Claus in the 2003 comedy Elf.

  • Patton Oswalt
    Photo: New Line Cinema

    Patton Oswalt was a mall Santa Claus in 2011's A Very Harold & Kumar 3D Christmas.

    More Patton Oswalt 

    #202 of 339 The Funniest People Of All Time#79 of 233 The Funniest Stand Up Comedians Of All Time#70 of 115 The Best Short Actors

  • Richard Attenborough
    Photo: 20th Century Fox

    Lord Richard Attenborough played Kris Kringle in 1994's Miracle on 34th Street.

    More Richard Attenborough 

    #1147 of 2,443 The Most Influential People of All Time#34 of 239 The Greatest British Actors of All Time#128 of 302 The Greatest Actors Who Have Never Won an Oscar (for Acting)