Melissa McCarthy Reveals the 'Weird' Annual Holiday Tradition That Her Family 'Demands'

Melissa McCarthy stars in Peacock's new holiday comedy 'Genie,' which is streaming now

Tiffany Rose/Getty Melissa McCarthy details her family
Tiffany Rose/Getty Melissa McCarthy details her family's "weird" holiday tradition

Holidays at Melissa McCarthy's house are just as silly as you would imagine.

McCarthy told Savannah Guthrie about her unconventional Christmas Eve traditions on Wednesday's episode of Today.

“Every Christmas Eve, we’ve done it for a decade, we do a weird meatball party,” The Little Mermaid star, 53, said lightheartedly.

“Oh, the traditional meatball party!” the news host laughed.

“We have everybody over, we make sandwiches, we watch all of The Lord of the Rings,” she explained of her holiday plans, adding that they watch the extended versions of the fantasy movies because one of her daughters, Georgie, 13, and husband Ben Falcone “demand it.” (McCarthy and Falcone also share daughter Vivian, 16.)

The mother of two joked that “watching things ooze up from [Middle] Earth” is how her family gets into the holiday spirit. The Gilmore Girls alum says that she’s not only flexible about the themes of Christmas movies but also the timing.

“I’m a sucker for a Christmas movie,” she said, admitting that she sometimes watches them year round.

McCarthy is taking her love of holiday movies to the next level by starring in Genie, a new holiday comedy directed by Sam Boyd. In the movie, McCarthy plays Flora, a genie who is unwittingly summoned by down-on-his luck dad Bernard (Paapa Essiedu) during the yuletide season in New York City.

<p>Universal Pictures</p> Paapa Essiedu and Melissa McCarthy star in the upcoming holiday movie 'Genie'

Universal Pictures

Paapa Essiedu and Melissa McCarthy star in the upcoming holiday movie 'Genie'

Bernard is struggling to connect with his family while under the thumb of his unrelenting boss (Alan Cumming, who originally starred as Bernard in Curtis' 1991 TV movie Bernard and the Genie, which the new film is based on), and enlists the help of Flora to untangle his mess.

McCarthy explained that her character has been locked in a box for 2,000 years which makes for “that fun, fish out of water” storyline.

Related: Richard Curtis on How Melissa McCarthy's Genie Casting Mirrors Julia Roberts' for Notting Hill (Exclusive)

“I don’t know what hand sanitizer is, I don’t know what pizza is,” she explained to Guthrie. “Everything is magical and mystical to me and I do a lot of things wrong.”

Genie’s writer Richard Curtis, who also wrote classic romantic comedies like Love Actually, Four Weddings and a Funeral and Bridget Jones's Diary, told PEOPLE that he "couldn't believe" McCarthy would play the lead role.

"I've actually got a photograph of me sitting in a chair receiving the phone call when Julia Roberts said yes to Notting Hill," Curtis, 67 said. "Because we'd offered it to her and we thought, 'That's never going to happen.' And it was a bit the same with Melissa."

Genie is available to stream on Peacock now.

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