10+ Random Facts About 'Rudolph The Red-Nosed Reindeer' Even Buddy the Elf Doesn't Know

When it comes to holiday classics, Rudolph The Red-Nosed Reindeer is top of the list.

It is, after all, the longest-running Christmas special! Did you know that it also took almost two years to create? Or that the puppets for Santa and Rudolph went missing for decades?

For more holiday secrets, here are 10+ completely random things even the biggest Christmas fans didn't know.

1. The character was dreamed up for a department store.

Christmas and advertising certainly go hand-in-hand.

It was the Montgomery Ward that commissioned a catalog copywriter, John May, to create a Christmas character for coloring books in 1993. These books were given to kids visiting Santa.

2. It took 18 months to create.

Stop-motion takes time. After the voice recordings were finished, the animation took place in Japan.

This was by MOM Production Studios, which was led by an expert in stop-motional amination: Tadahito “Tad” Mochinaga.

To give you a better sense of why production took so long, it took 24 frames to create one second of filmed animation.

Also, the animators took their job very seriously by going to a national park to study deer and their movements for the animation.

3. Most of the voice actors were Canadian.

That's because the voice actors recorded their parts in Toronto.

In a strange twist of fate, the voice actors of Rudolph and Hermey even ended up becoming neighbors later in life.

They both lived at the Performing Arts Lodge, a Toronto housing development for actors and artists, in the early '00s.

“It’s a great place to be, the only place for misfits anyway,” Billie Mae Richards, who voiced Rudolph, joked to the Chicago Tribune in 2002.

4. It was May's brother-in-law, Johnny Marks, who wrote the song for Rudolph.

This family sure has talent! Marks wrote the song 10 years after May first dreamed up the character.

He's also responsible for the holiday songs: "Rockin' Around the Christmas Tree" and "A Holly Jolly Christmas."

5. Sam the Snowman was crafted after Burl Ives.

Yep, that's why they look so familiar! Personally, I think Sam looks a bit like Colonel Sanders, AKA, the creator of KFC.

Ives was also the voice of Sam, which meant that he narrated the film.

6. It's the longest-running Christmas special.

It's a classic for a reason.

The beloved Christmas special has aired every year since its first showing on December 6, 1964. This makes it over half a century old! And yet, each time you watch it feels like the first.

7. Rudolph's puppet is smaller than all the rest.

They just had to make him more different, didn't they?!

While Santa stands at eight inches tall with his puppet and Bumble is the tallest at 14 inches, little Rudolph is only four inches tall. Awww.

8. You've probably been saying Hermey's name all wrong.

In case you forget who he is, he's the elf who wants to be a dentist. If that's not a head-scratcher, his name certainly is.

Since some companies created merchandise with his name as Herbie, it's caused some confusion.

9. Hermie the Elf was awarded the Dental Do Gooder award in real life.

Speaking of his lifelong passion to be a dentist, the president of the American Dental Association awarded Hermie with the title in 2014.

“Hermey’s passion for dentistry, coupled with his devotion to helping others feel good about themselves inside and out, deserves recognition,” said ADA President Maxine Feinberg, DDS.

There are even holiday-themed dental information, quizzes, and trivia on MouthHealthy.org for kids and families.

10. The puppets for Santa and Rudolph went missing.

One employee from production was put on the "naughty" list after she took home the puppets after production wrapped up. This was back in 1970!

Over the years, she let her children play with them and feed them Play-Doh.

The original puppets weren't discovered until 2005 when they appeared on an episode of *Antiques Roadshow*.

While they were created for about $5,000 each in 1964, they sold between $8,000 to $10,000.

The pair were bought by Kevin A. Kriess, the president of TimeandSpaceToys.com.

11. A misstep in the original broadcast caused lots of angry fan letters.

In the very first airing of Rudolph, Rudolph, Hermey, and Yukon never returned to the Island of Misfit Toys, despite saying that they would.

This mistake led to so many angry fans that the network added the scene in the next year.

12. “Silver and Gold” was originally sung by Yukon Cornelius.

Yukon (Larry Mann) sang the song in the version of the film that never aired 28 times!

In the end, the song was reassigned to Burl Ives, which is the voice we recognize today.

13. The puppets only had three fingers and a thumb.

This was “just enough for them to grasp things” said Arthur Rankin, one of the creators behind Rudolph.

This was also done so it wouldn't clutter the animation.

The puppets were also all built with joints inside their bodies.

This was done strategically so that the joints made it easy for the animators to move the puppets' bodies around.

Surprisingly, this even included their eyes, ears, and mouth.