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TONIGHT: AMC Alum Jonathan Bennett in Hallmark’s First LGBTQ+ Led Rom-Com ‘The Holiday Sitter’

Photo: Crown Media

In Hallmark’s first holiday movie offering featuring a same-sex love story at its epicenter, Jonathan Bennett (ex-JR Chandler, All My Children) not only stars, but is the project’s executive producer.  And, on Sunday night, when The Holiday Sitter premieres at 8 p.m. EST, it’s a big deal.

After much outcry for Hallmark’s Countdown to Christmas programming block to be more inclusive, the channel is now poised to be on the right side of history.

The set-up of this ‘meet-cute’ rom-com goes something like this: Sam (Bennett) who is a workaholic has to ditch his Hawaiian holiday plans when he is asked to watch his sister’s children (his niece and nephew).  However, when Sam becomes overwhelmed, he gets a helping hand from his sister’s neighbor, Jason played by George Krissa. And within a blink of an eye, Sam and Jason find they are both unattached and attracted to each other, and Christmas becomes a lot brighter for the two of them.

As for Bennett, he previously appeared in Hallmark’s 2020 film, The Christmas House which was the channel’s first holiday movie to include a same-sex storyline. He later returned to that role in last year’s sequel The Christmas House 2: Deck Those Halls.

Bennett told USA Today on tonight’s milestone Hallmark holiday tale: “What’s so special about The Holiday Sitter is that it’s the first time we’ll see two men meet-cute and fall in love at Christmas. We tell a story that’s really important, so people that are watching it feel seen when they watch it. But just like Christmas is for everybody, The Holiday Sitter is for everybody… It just happens to have two men as the lead.”

Photo: HallmarkChannel

Hallmark Media’s Executive Vice-President, Lisa Hamilton told Deadline: “We felt that it was time for a story with a gay couple. We are really trying to make it so that everybody sees themselves when they tune in. We are trying to stay true to the Hallmark brand values, one of which is inclusiveness. It’s a true of Hallmark cards, which has a card for every kind of occasion. In the past, there was a focus on one particular kind of love story, and I think everybody thought, ‘wow, we’re not telling the whole story here.’”

The timing of The Holiday Sitter comes after Candace Cameron Bure received much backlash for her sentiments when she told the Wall Street Journal that the Great American Family network in which she stars in several of their holiday films, will “keep traditional marriage at the core” and never do stories/movies featuring same-sex couples.

Check out a preview for The Holiday Sitter below.

Now let us know, what do you think of the Hallmark Channel finally featuring a gay love story for one of its holiday films? Will you be checking out the landmark movie? Share your thoughts in the comment section.

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rose
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rose

I will check out The Holiday Sitter. But not news to me that Hallmark has been showing more inclusive stories in the last couple of years. These include racial, ethnic, and gender. Even a Hanukah story. Sometimes even more than the soaps.

Satan
Guest
Satan

I’ll skip it, just like I do all these sappy cheesy Helliday Hallmark movies. That said, a gay couple in a sappy movie is just as good as a straight couple, if you want to watch those things.

As for what Candace Cameron or her brother think about anything….. well, I think you all can guess how a Devil feels about those two.

DK
Guest
DK

Satan … You should LOVE Candace and Kirk!!!!! They push exactly the type of divisive, hateful Christianity that makes it easy for you to debunk it! Those two (and all of Hollywood) make your job easy!! What do you got to complain about?

Satan
Guest
Satan

If you really want to see something HELLarious, look up the videos Kirk made with one if his preacher friends named Ray Comfort. Especially the one where he insists that bananas are proof of my Former Employer’s existence & creation plans. (even though the common banana you find in your grocery stores was actually a hybrid created by the agriculture industry and never existed in the “wild”.)

rose
Guest
rose

No report here for The Holiday Sitter. I watched for a while, but it was one of the Hallmark shows that didn’t appeal to me. And not because of the gayness. So I changed the channel, and found a Harry Potter that I hadn’t seen for a while. Satan, A few of characters that belong in your domain. :)))

Satan
Guest
Satan

Maybe they’ll do a Voldemort Hallmark movie next?

Rodd
Guest
Rodd

Yay! Loved it as much, if not more than any other HM Christmas movie!

Greg
Guest
Greg

This is so encouraging!!It is hard to believe that in this day and age that anyone working in Hollywood can be homophobic as is Candace Bure.

Steve Burton is also said to be so. Very disappointing since he is now working and has been working on shows with gay writing regimes.

DK
Guest
DK

Yea. It is REALLY sad when people have an opinion contrary to yours. You expect people to bend over backwards (literally) to follow your opinion … But if anyone disagrees with your opinion, they ought to be killed. Let people live!!

OG Steve
Guest
OG Steve

That reply is rather satirical. The bending over backwards mention is crude. Nobody mentioned anything about killing anyone. And letting people live is what LGBT+ people have been seeking for decades, so thank you for agreeing in a roundabout way.

DK
Guest
DK

I will gratefully pass … But hope it does well.
In the ratings and such!!! These actors need to make a living!

rose
Guest
rose

When I first watched Hallmark a few years ago it was a nice, happy ending network. No academy awards here. A diversion from real life dramas and violence going on everyday in the news. And I liked their stores, But now controversy re program content between the newer competing network and some actors leaving to join it. Very disappointing.

rose
Guest
rose

I case anyone is interested just saw a cleaned up version of Josh Kelly/Cody/GH is in a Hallmark movie Christmas Bells Are Ringing 2018. :)))

rose
Guest
rose

Just to keep you updated on Hallmark. :)))). It was featured on CBS Sunday Morning today as the happy show, that has a good ending, with romance, high cable ratings, and many women viewers of all ages. I’ve even noticed the major big three cable networks have a happy Christmas movie or two this year. Daytime soaps could take a lesson. Since they are shown 24/7, in a way these Hallmark movies are also taking the place of soaps for “romance in the afternoon” instead of all of the violence on GH recently. It showed about how Hallmark has gotten… Read more »

All My Children

Kelly Ripa Launches Podcast on SiriusXM

Former All My Children stars Kelly Ripa (ex-Hayley) and Mark Consuelos (ex-Mateo) can add launching a podcast to their extensive resume through their production company, Milojo Productions, and Sirius XM.

According to Deadline, Ripa will host Let’s Talk Off Camera with Kelly Ripa, where she will have in-depth conversations with celebrity guests. Depending on the subject matter, a specialist or expert could also join the episode to provide insight.

In a statement on her new hosting gig and show, Ripa expressed: “After 23 years of interviewing celebrities, authors, musicians and experts on live TV, the big takeaway is that the most compelling and unfiltered conversations happen off camera. I have dreamed of a platform where I can have these honest talks without all the fuss and filter of a camera. Now SiriusXM has made my dream a reality with a podcast featuring friends, both old and new, discussing a variety of topics we all face in life, while getting deep with some experts’ views and advice along the way. Not another podcast, this is off camera!”

New episodes of Let’s Talk Off Camera with Kelly Ripa will be available every week on Stitcher, the SXM App, and all major podcast listening platforms beginning in March.

Kelly will be quite busy co-hosting the syndicated talk show Live with Kelly and Ryan, in addition to Let’s Talk Off Camera with Kelly Ripa.

So, will you check out Kelly’s new podcast? Hope she has some All My Children alum on as guests? Comment below.

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All My Children

Michael B. Jordan Recalls His Acting Start as All My Children’s Reggie in SNL Opening Monologue

Last night, Michael B. Jordan hosted Saturday Night Live.  The Creed star, who is the director of the upcoming Creed III due out in March, took to the stage to deliver his opening monologue, and right off the top he mentioned his beginnings as All My Children’s Reggie.

Jordan portrayed Reggie from 2003-2006 on the ABC soap opera (his character was eventually adopted by Jack Montgomery).

When Michael hit the stage, he shared: “Yesterday, I had a crazy full-circle moment. We pre-shot some videos for the show and when I got to the studio I realized it was the exact same place where I shot one of my first acting roles on the soap opera All My Children.

Photo: ABC

He then tossed to a clip of his 16-year-old self in which Reggie says, “sometimes the animal in me gets kind of crazy” and then howls life a wolf at the end of the scene. Back to the SNL stage, Jordan said mockingly, “I’m pretty sure I hit puberty mid-howl.”

Jordan ended his monologue by looping it back to his early acting days on AMC, sharing: “I just want to say, I’m so grateful to be standing on this stage. Sometimes, I can take myself a little too seriously but tonight, I’m going to have fun, I’m just going to go for it. And maybe, just maybe let the inner animal get a little crazy.”

Watch Michael’s opening monologue below.  Then let us know, what did you think of the the AMC Reggie clip reference? Do you recall Michael’s days on the ABC daytime drama series? Comment below.

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All My Children

NBC Celebrates Carol Burnett’s 90th Birthday with Retrospective Special Featuring Susan Lucci and More Celebrity Guests

The beloved Carol Burnett will get the star-studded affair treatment for her 90th birthday when NBC airs Carol Burnett: 90 Years of Laughter + Love.

The two-hour special career retrospective will air Wednesday, April 26 at 8 p.m. ET/PT and will stream the next day on Peacock. The special is set to be filmed at Avalon Hollywood in Los Angeles.

The evening will include musical performances from Bernadette Peters, Billy Porter, Jane Lynch, Katy Perry, Kristin Chenoweth and more.

Special guests include: Aileen Quinn, Amy Poehler, Bill Hader, Bob Mackie, Cher, Ellen DeGeneres, Julie Andrews, Kristen Wiig, Laura Dern, Lily Tomlin, Marisa Tomei, Sofia Vergara, Steve Carell, Tracee Ellis Ross, Vicki Lawrence, and many more.

Photo: ABC

One very special guest for soap fans will be that of Susan Lucci (ex-Erica Kane, All My Children).  As everyone knows, Carol Burnett was a huge fan of All My Children and Lucci, and eventually got a part written just for her when she appeared not once, but three times throughout the daytime drama’s run on ABC as Verla Grubbs.  The character turned out to the daughter of Langley Wallingford (the late Louis Edmonds).  Burnett appeared in Pine Valley in 1983, 1995, and 2005.

In a statement on the big soiree’, Burnett shared: “I’m so excited NBC decided to throw me a birthday party and invited all of my closest friends. I can’t wait to look back at so many wonderful moments throughout my career, I feel so lucky to share this night with everyone.”

“This special is going to be the best party ever,” said Mark Bracco, executive producer and president of Silent House Productions. “It will be an evening of music, comedy and dozens of big stars paying tribute to the one and only Carol Burnett.  We look forward to everyone at home celebrating right along with us.”

Viewers will see some of the funniest and most memorable moments of Burnett’s legendary career including moment from the acclaimed sketch comedy series The Carol Burnett Show.

So, looking forward to the special honoring Carol Burnett’s legendary career? Hope they bring up her role as Verla on AMC? For now, check out this scene featuring Carol, Ruth Warrick (Phoebe) and Louis Edmonds from All My Children, and let us know your thoughts in the comment section below.

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