Watch this Weekend: The Kings of Christmas

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As we program films for the Summer Series, we are always looking for stories that illuminate the lives of our fellow New Yorkers. Here is one for the holiday light lovers.

According to one of the newly-installed LinkNYC kiosks that have been popping up around the city, over 100,000 people make a pilgrimage to the elaborate, flashy, and ornate Christmas displays in Dyker Heights each holiday season. These and other Brooklyn, Queens, and Staten Island homes draw city residents and out‑of‑state travelers alike who swarm the sidewalks and roads, clogging the residential streets as December 25th approaches.

The 2005 short film, The Kings of Christmas, introduces the men and women, the vast majority of whom are Italian-American, behind the biggest, brightest, and most over-the-top holiday decorated houses around the New York City. At the center of it all is Lou Nasti, whose workshop provides the animatronic figures, and many other display elements for these wintertime dioramas and fantasyscapes. Watch as homeowners transform their mundane side-yards and tiny lawns into dazzling displays for the holiday season.

ABOUT THE DIRECTOR: David Katz is a staff editor and writer at Esquire magazine in New York, and was previously at Time Out New York and Vanity Fair. He was born and raised in Los Angeles, and attended the UC Berkeley. This is his first film. The short was initially inspired by a story he had written on one of the featured characters.