Cookies help us deliver our Services. By using our Services, you agree to our use of cookies. Learn More.

Beverly D'Angelo Sees An Unlikely Connection Between Violent Night And Christmas Vacation

"Time for some season's beatings," a blood-stained David Harbour says in the trailer for "Violent Night." It's one of many campy one-liners destined to imbue the season with a bit of Christmas fear when "Violent Night" hits theaters on December 2. In what's gearing up to be the most violent Christmas flick since "Die Hard," "Violent Night" stars Harbour as Santa Claus, though he's not the jolly Saint Nick you grew up with. This Santa swills beer and shanks bad guys with sharpened candy canes.

This version of Santa may be unrepentantly violent, but he still has a clear moral compass. When some thuggish mercenaries on Santa's naughty list threaten to ruin Christmas for a little girl, Trudy Lightstone (Leah Brady), on his nice list, Santa intervenes. John Leguizamo stars as the crew's evil leader, and Alex Hassell and Alexis Louder play the girl's parents. "National Lampoon" alum Beverly D'Angelo plays the domineering matriarch of the Lightstone family. Here's how D'Angelo was able to link Gertrude Lightstone and Ellen Griswold.

Beverly D'Angelo imagines her Violent Night character as an emboldened Ellen Griswold

On paper, Gertrude Lightstone and Ellen Griswold have nothing in common. The former is foul-mouthed and cruel, and the latter is (usually) the voice of reason to her husband Clark's mayhem. But Beverly D'Angelo can draw a clear line between her holiday movies "Violent Night" and "National Lampoon's Christmas Vacation."

According to D'Angelo, Ellen would morph into Gertrude — her selfish, bizarro counterpart — if she became a widower. "It's like if Clark died and she became an uber wealthy, matriarchal badass," D'Angelo explained to the New York Post. "She throws around obscenities like she's flicking ashes off a lit cigarette and she knows how to handle a gun." D'Angelo also confirms that while Gertrude is cold-hearted, she at least isn't cleaning up after a bumbling husband. She continued, "It's not Ellen setting the table for an exploding turkey."

D'Angelo hasn't played Ellen Griswold since "Christmas Vacation" in 1989, but when it comes to reprising the role for a sequel, the actress says, "Never say never." Perhaps she could bring some of Gertrude's cigarette-flicking attitude to the Griswold home.