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Why Bernard Actor David Krumholtz Understandably Withdrew From The Santa Clause 3

Ask anyone what their favorite Christmas-themed movie is and chances are they'll shout out Disney's "The Santa Clause." Released in 1994 to critical acclaim, the Tim Allen-starring family romp saw an overworked man accidentally causing the death of Saint Nicholas himself. After wearing the jolly man's suit and delivering presents around the world, Allen's character fully assumed the role of Father Christmas. The Christmas flick grossed over $190 million at the box office (via The Numbers) and has become a holiday fixture, airing throughout the world during the winter season. 

"The Santa Clause" spawned two sequels, each which were financially successful in their own right, bringing the franchise's global cume to $470 million, per The Numbers. Beyond making a jolly chunk of change for Disney, the franchise has become synonymous with Christmas, with Rotten Tomatoes deeming the first and second entry as some of the best holiday films ever made. Generations have grown up watching the "Santa Clause" franchise, with many households making it a yearly tradition to watch.

While Allen's jolly titular character is at the heart of the series, it would be impossible to deny the infectious love audiences hold for Bernard. Played by David Krumholtz, Bernard is Santa's head elf, working with him throughout the years except in... 2007's "The Santa Clause 3: The Escape Clause."Fans have been wondering for years where the elf was in the third "Santa Clause" flick and they now have their answer.

Krumholtz has now opened up about why he wasn't in the third Santa flick and his comments certainly aren't elf-friendly.

David Krumholtz says Santa Clause 3 devalued Bernard

David Krumholtz made headlines when it was announced that he would be returning to the fan-favorite role of Bernard for Disney+'s limited series "The Santa Clauses." Audiences last saw Bernard as Santa's right-hand elf in 2002's "The Santa Clause 2," making his return as head elf two decades in the making. Audiences who sat down to watch the Martin Short-starring "The Santa Clause 3: The Escape Clause" in 2007 were surprised to see no Bernard, a fixture of the franchise.

Reports from the time largely suggested that Krumholtz wasn't in the threequel because of scheduling conflicts. Now, in an interview with Vulture, the iconic "Santa Clause" actor has finally opened up about the real reason he wasn't in the North Pole for Santa's third outing. "Well, the story about my scheduling is true, but somehow also untrue," the actor said, before revealing that Bernard originally had a significant role in the initial "Santa Clause 3" script. After confirming that he was able to work out his scheduling conflicts with Disney, the actor brought up his issues with the threequel's script. In the "Santa Clause 3," Jack Frost (Short) steals the Santa moniker from Tim Allen's character.

"But I would say that the character got devalued a little bit and I couldn't in good conscience do it," Krumholtz said. "The third one, I've tried to watch. It's not the same. I think the first two are really special." The Bernard actor's comments do ring true, at least critically. "The Escape Clause" holds a meager 17% on Rotten Tomatoes. Audiences didn't care for it either, with fan reception resting at 39%.