Andy Walken just got the best Christmas gift ever. The child actor has been cast as Ralphie in Fox's upcoming live musical version of A Christmas Story.
Walken's casting was announced in an adorable video released by the network today, showing the moment he got the news he would be in the special. He's seen getting a phone call from the director, Scott Ellis. He tells Walken that he got a gift - he was cast as Ralphie Parker!
"I can relate to Ralphie and the reason Ralphie would be awesome is that I love this movie so much," Walken says in an interview before he got the part. "If I got this role, it would be the greatest, most awesome Christmas present I've ever gotten in my life."
The 11-year-old Walken does have a few acting credits under his belt. He appeared in episodes of NCIS and Heartbeat and appeared in the TV movie Escaping Dad earlier this year.
The project will feature new music from Benj Pasek and Justin Paul (La La Land) and will be executive produced by Marc Platt (Grease: Live). Pasek and Paul also wrote the music and lyrics for the original Broadway production of A Christmas Story: The Musical, which earned three Tony nominations in 2013.
The musical is based on the iconic 1983 film, which TBS runs for 24 hour straight during the holiday season. The film is about Ralphie Parker, who tries to convince his parents to get him his beloved Red Ryder Carbine Action 200-shot Range Model air rifle. It was directed by the late Bob Clark and based on Jean Shepherd's book In God We Trust: All Others Pay Cash. Peter Billingsley played Ralphie in the film. Melinda Dillon played his mom.