Hallmark movie staple helps generate another holiday tale
Q: You’ve done a number of holiday movies for Hallmark Channel and Hallmark Movies & Mysteries in recent years. How do you feel “Christmas Tree Lane” fits that list?
A: What makes it that much more special is the fact that (fellow star) Alicia Witt plays piano and sings in it. There’s original music in the movie, and she’s incredibly talented. I really didn’t know she had that much talent when it came to piano-playing and singing. She usually does Christmas-specific films, whereas I’ve done a bunch for the different holidays or seasons. This was the first time we’ve crossed paths.
Q: How was it to make “Christmas Tree Lane” in the midst of the coronavirus pandemic?
A: It was really uncharted territory. We didn’t know what we were getting ourselves into, because it was the first network project back, out of everyone in the industry. We were kind of the guinea pigs for everybody, and with that responsibility, we just wanted to make sure we were doing everything possible to make sure everyone was safe. And to make sure we finished the project and told the story.
Q: You’ve romanced many of Hallmark’s leading ladies in your movies. How does your wife feel about that?
A: Fortunately, she is very accepting of it. I’m married to a French girl from Montreal whose father would travel; he’d be home for a month and then be gone for every two months, so she grew up with that, and it’s easy for her to deal with an actor’s kind of schedule. Plus, she’s very secure in herself and in our relationship. She knows this is just a job, plus more often than not, my leading ladies are just amazing people — great, strong women who also are very sweet.
Jay Bobbin has decades of experience covering the television and movie businesses, winning Tribune Media Services’ Crown Jewel Award in 2008 for his performance in the company. Over those many years of interviewing and writing, he has spoken with everyone from Robert De Niro and John Travolta to Paul McCartney and Tony Bennett … from Meryl Streep and Julie Andrews to Taylor Swift and Carrie Underwood.