PopWatch Planner: Christmas movies, dragon tattoos... and Justin Bieber

It’s beginning to look a lot like Christmas. Well, not so much here in Los Angeles, where the only snow is the fake kind at the mall, but definitely on TV and in theaters. Whether you can’t get enough of holiday movies and cheer, or you’re looking for a way to ignore the whole thing, this week has something for everyone. PopWatch Planner is here to help guide you through the holidays with nine can’t-miss entertainment events.

SUNDAY
Meryl Streep on 60 Minutes, 7 p.m., CBS
How does she do it? The two-time Oscar winner (and most nominated actress ever) shares her tools of the trade with Morley Safer. Streep plays former British prime minister Margaret Thatcher in her latest film, Iron Lady, which opens Dec. 30. Catch a preview of the interview here.

MONDAY
VH1 Divas Celebrate Soul, 9 p.m., VH1
It’s been a rough year for the ladies of soul, including the loss of the young, talented, troubled Amy Winehouse, and news that the great New Orleans jazz singer Etta James is ailing, so VH1 Divas Celebrate Soul couldn’t come at a better time to lift spirits. Featuring performances by Mary J. Blige, Kelly Clarkson, and Jennifer Hudson, this music special tempts you to take a break from the carols to dig deep with the divas.

TUESDAY
The Girl With the Dragon Tattoo opens in theaters
You wouldn’t think one extra day matters when it comes to movie openings, but in the busy holiday season, every moment counts. Christmas is coming early for those who’ve been waiting what feels like forever for David Fincher’s interpretation of Stieg Larsson’s popular novel to hit screens. So grab a cup of coffee (since that’s what they do in Sweden, apparently), and head to the theater to catch Rooney Mara in her breakout role as the edgy, subversive, and tortured Lisbeth Salander.

TUESDAY BONUS:
A Very Gilly Christmas, 8 p.m., NBC
If you’re staying in, catch new sketches from SNL with the always-in-hot-water Gilly (Kristen Wiig), featuring guest appearances by Alec Baldwin and Steve Martin.

WEDNESDAY
Giada’s Family Christmas, 6 p.m., Food Network
Since Dec. 21 officially marks one year until the end of the world, there’s no need to keep counting calories. Gorgeous Food Network star and member of one of Hollywood’s royal families Giada De Laurentiis gets into the spirit with recipes like Italian struffoli and holiday French toast. Yum!

THURSDAY
Justin Bieber: Home for the Holidays, 6 p.m., MuchMusic
It is a very sad day for America, since this particular dose of Bieber fever is only available to those with access to Canada’s answer to MTV, MuchMusic. But if you are lucky enough to be Canadian (or just visiting our neighbors to the north), you can catch the Biebs as he heads back to his home turf for a holiday special. As for the rest of us, we will just have to muddle through somehow by watching that Mariah Carey/Justin Bieber duet on repeat.

FRIDAY
In the Land of Blood and Honey opens in theaters
You won’t see Angelina Jolie’s striking features in this Bosnian war story, but she was behind the lens every step of the way. The film landed her a Golden Globe nomination for directing, and I can’t wait to see what magic our favorite action lady can work behind the scenes.

SATURDAY
It’s a Wonderful Life, 8 p.m., NBC and A Christmas Story, 6 p.m., TBS
If you hate Christmas movies, I really hope you loaded up your DVR in advance, because it is holiday time all around tonight. Get ready for 24 hours of A Christmas Story on TBS and the annual broadcast of It’s a Wonderful Life on NBC.

SUNDAY
War Horse opens in theaters
Steven Spielberg’s interpretation of the hit play War Horse is exactly the overarching, majestic movie you want to see with your family on Christmas Day. It’s also a full 2 hours and 15 minutes that you don’t have to talk to your grandma about why you aren’t married yet.

SUNDAY BONUS:
Disney Very Merry Christmas Parade, 12 p.m., ABC
Watch Mickey and friends in the annual march down Main Street, USA.

Or you can always watch the Yule log with grandma… but why?

Read more:
The Academy can no longer ‘ignore’ Meryl Streep
Your favorite holiday film

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