The Town Santa Forgot (also known as The Town That Santa Forgot) is an animated television special produced by Hanna-Barbera. Originally broadcast on NBC on December 3, 1993, it is based on the poem Jeremy Creek by Charmaine Severson.
The special opens with a framing device featuring an old man and his two grandkids on Christmas Eve. The grandkids are anxiously waiting for Santa Claus, thinking only of the toys that he will bring them. The grandfather sits down to tell the kids the main story.
The story is about Jeremy Creek, a little boy who knows nothing but greed. He throws temper tantrums every time he sees what he wants, and he wants everything he sees. After many complaints (and a huge crack in the wall), Jeremy's mother and father inform him that he will get no more toys from them. Jeremy goes to his room and starts playing with the thousands of toys that he already owns. He comes to a realization: If his parents wouldn't get him the toys, then he should ask Santa Claus instead. With a red crayon and papers taped together to form a list half a mile long, Jeremy writes every toy he can think of on the list. He quickly finishes it and mails it in June.
July, August, and September soon pass, and Jeremy remains in his room waiting, for Christmas to come. By this time, Santa has received the letter and, through his wisdom, believes the half-mile list has to come from a town, for no one boy could possibly want so much. So, looking at a Church-sized map, he and the elves look all over the world for the town of "Jeremy Creek". One elf named Pomp finds it, and points out that it has never been on his route. Feeling guilty, Santa orders everything on the list, one for each boy and girl in the little forgotten town.
Halloween and Thanksgiving pass, and soon it is Christmas Eve. When night falls, Jeremy goes up on the roof of his house and waits for Santa to arrive, intending to snatch the toys from the sleigh. Santa eventually comes, but Jeremy is devastated when Santa passes by him without stopping at his house, and he cries himself to sleep.
When Jeremy awakens the next morning, he rushes downstairs, hoping maybe Santa sneaked in through the window and left his presents under the tree after all. But to his dismay, he finds no presents under the tree. Upset about this, he goes to watch the news with his parents. While watching TV, he witnesses a report on television stating that Santa Claus has brought holiday cheer to a swamp town that happens to share the same name as him. Upon hearing this, Jeremy is at first resentful that the kids in this town got all the toys he wanted, but when the kids on the TV state that they'd like to give a thank-you to whoever wrote to Santa telling him to come to their town, his cold heart melts and he realizes that this accidental good deed of his makes him feel better than any present ever could.
Immediately following Jeremy's newfound change of heart, Santa appears in a small size, telling him that he's come to grant the swamp town's hero whatever he wants. Jeremy replies that he doesn't really want anything, for he has learned that it is better to give than to receive. In the end, Santa makes Jeremy his assistant for helping him deliver Christmas presents, a task he lovingly accepts and continues to perform until he outgrows his seat in Santa's sleigh. Outside of Christmas, Jeremy also becomes a more caring boy and shares his toys with his neighbors.
The special closes with the narrator and his grandkids, who have taken the story to heart and now don't care what they get from Santa. The old man then tells them that every few Christmases, Santa still picks out a little boy or girl to assist him in his annual journey. On the very last shot, some snow falls off the old man's mailbox outside to reveal the name "J. Creek", implying that the old man himself was actually Jeremy Creek.
- Dick Van Dyke as the narrator
- Miko Hughes as young Jeremy Creek
- Troy Davidson as the grandson
- Julie McWhirter Dees
- Haven Hartman as Little Swamp Girl
- Ashley Johnson as the granddaughter
- Melinda Peterson as Jeremy's mother
- Phil Proctor as Jeremy's father
- Neil Ross as Pout the Elf
- Hal Smith as Santa Claus
- B. J. Ward
- Paul Williams as Pomp the Elf