Collider reports that David Krumholtz discussed why he was not a part of The Santa Clause 3: The Escape Clause despite his character’s popularity. According to Krumholtz, his absence was a combination of scheduling issues and a sense that the character had been devalued.
Bernard the Elf rose in popularity with his fans because of his sarcastic personality, making both his character and The Santa Clause holiday classics. But Bernard was not present during the third film, and without much explanation. There were some assumptions that his absence was due to scheduling issues since Krumholtz was filming a television show at the time. The actor confirms this and additional factors to his absence in his interview with Vulture:
“Well, the story about my scheduling is true, but somehow also untrue… Bernard was in the third movie. They sent me the script, I had a pretty significant role. We did work out the schedule, which was going to be hellish on me, but I was going to make it work. And it was all set to go. But I would say that the character got devalued a little bit and I couldn’t in good conscience do it. The third one, I’ve tried to watch. It’s not the same. I think the first two are really special. The first one’s a classic, obviously. It’s wild to be part of something that’s lasted this long, that plays every single year and has become tradition in people’s homes. I could never have imagined that I’d be having this conversation years later.”
The Santa Clause series continues to be a staple for Christmas, but Bernard’s presence as Jack Frost causing trouble on the North Pole was dearly missed by many. Still, the franchise continues to warm the hearts of future generations years later.