[Warning: General spoilers ahead.]
Here at TV Goodness, we have our favorites. Continuum is a show that we loved a lot and still miss, and we’re loyal to its cast, wherever their work takes them. Victor Webster has popped up on our screens recently in Girlfriends’ Guide to Divorce and he was in Hallmark Movies & Mysteries’ Magic Stocking last winter. Saturday night, he’s back on Hallmark Channel in the charming new romantic comedy, Summer Villa, opposite another Hallmark regular, Hilarie Burton.
It’s the story of a meet cute that goes really wrong when a blind date from hell is extended to an accidental summer house share 3,000 miles from home. I had the chance to chat exclusively with Webster about the film, working across different genres, and what he’d liked to have seen for Carlos on Continuum.
Webster was approached to do the film and signed on after reading the script. “It was so cute and fun and I was in. [Hallmark movies] are all happy and light and family friendly, which I love about them. It’s something my grandma and my little cousins can watch,” he says. “There’s no guns and knives. It’s fantastic, and different than a lot of the stuff I usually do.”
“Anytime you do [one of these movies] you know it’s going to be fun and happy. The set was incredibly fun and easy. Pat [Kiely], the director, was so into collaborating and so was Larry Grimaldi, the executive from MarVista. It was like a family or really good friends working together. We all hit it off immediately.”
“Hilarie is fantastic to work with. We were improv-ing off each other. Her energy [is great] and she comes prepared. A lot of time on these movies, the energy on set comes from the #1 on the call sheet on down. We had such a good time because she was so gracious and cool. She’s a fantastic actress and easy to work with and people just love her.”
Webster had several favorite scenes during the shoot, and is fond of the scene where he and Burton’s character first meet in the bar of his character’s restaurant. “I thought it was hilarious and a Three’s Company moment. There were a lot of good scenes in the kitchen where we were cooking together,” he adds.
There’s also a scene where Webster’s character and his romantic rival (Jocelin Haas) square off in a cooking competition. “It was almost like we were dueling. There’s a moment where Jocelin is cutting and supposed to look at me,” he says. “In the first take, he did it perfectly and in the second, he cut the top of his finger. I saw a little twinge and then we had to stop shooting because he was bleeding.”
The film shot in Montreal, standing in for France, and Webster says it’s a great city but they were working such a tight shoot that he didn’t really get to explore it much. “I think the last day we worked 19-and-a-half hours. We started at 11 am and it was six the next morning when we wrapped,” he recalls.
Last fall, Continuum wrapped up with a final, six-episode fourth season, and Webster was grateful they had the chance to choose their ending. “I think it was fantastic that we actually got to be able to finish, that we got six episodes to tie it up,” he says. “Everybody wanted to see if Kiera would make it home and what would happen. I think we owed it to the fans who had invested so much time with us.”
“And as actors, you want to have a closed ending. I did a show called Mutant X. We did three seasons, we were supposed to do a fourth and it didn’t happen. It was an abrupt ending with no resolutions, no tie ups, no nothing. We were coming back and knew we were coming back and FOX had the X-Men franchise [and had filed a suit against us].”
” It would have cost our production company more to fight the lawsuit than to shoot the show [so they ended it]. It was a David and Goliath [situation and] most slingshots don’t work in fights like that.”
[Note: I watched it in first-run syndication 2001-2004 and highly recommend checking it out.]
“I would have liked to see Mutant X go five [seasons] and Continuum go seven. That was literally the best job I had. The people were great. I liked being n Vancouver. Our cast and crew [were great]. I feel really lucky to have done four and if I was going to be greedy I would have loved to have done three more.”
Webster says he wishes Carlos could have jumped to the future at least once, and if we detected a little bit of a wistful goodbye to Kiera at the end there, we didn’t imagine it. “I wanted time travel. I wanted to go the future and have my mind blown,” he explains.
As for Carlos and Kiera never coupling up, Webster says that was by design. “Our show was unconventional. That’s what everyone does, so [we said] ‘We’re going to do something else and have her hook up with somebody else and it’s going to drive Carlos crazy.’ [In that last scene with her], I was playing that [I wanted her to stay] and hoping somebody would pick up on it.”
Dropping into GG2D for a guest slot (twice) was a joy for Webster. “It’s so much fun to work with really talented actresses. Lisa [Edelstein] is so great,” he says. “She would throw lines at me and I’d respond to her. To work with somebody that is so organic like that is so refreshing and that’s why I do this.”
If he had to pick a dream role, it would be an action comedy. “If I could do something like a Lethal Weapon or Rush Hour, those would be my favorite. Scorpion King 4 was a great mix of that,” he says. “Don’t take yourself too seriously and get to do some action. These romantic comedies are great, too. If I could be in a series and going to work every day and doing a fantastic show, then I’m all about it.”
You can find Webster online at Twitter, posting his photography on Instagram, and sharing videos on Snapchat. “Photography is personal to me but it’s not of me,” he points out. “I like to share that and maybe it inspires somebody or is artistically pleasing. I try to make people laugh with Snapchat or inspire people [when I’m] training.”
You’ll also see him promote various personal causes on his Twitter feed. “Anything to do with people or animals that can’t help or defend themselves…they’ve got to have somebody to speak for them,” he shares. “If I can raise awareness or money, that’s the least I can do. We should all have that kind of love and compassion.”
Summer Villa premieres Saturday at 9/8c on Hallmark Channel. Here’s a sneak peek:
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