Taylor Cole Talks One Winter Proposal and Ruby Herring Mysteries [Exclusive]
Taylor Cole has become a familiar presence and fan favorite on Hallmark Channel in recent years, and this month, she returns with two new movies–One Winter Proposal, the sequel to last January’s One Winter Weekend, which airs Saturday night, and next weekend, she’s on Hallmark Movies & Mysteries in Ruby Herring Mysteries: Silent Witness, which she and the network hope kicks off a new mystery wheel franchise. I spoke with Cole Friday afternoon about both projects.
Cole loved regrouping with the full cast of Jack Turner, Rukiya Bernard, and Dewshane Williams for One Winter Proposal, as well as the director, Gary Yates. The new film picks up a year after the first and finds Cara and Ben happy together as she’s about to publish her first book and start grad school and he’s kicking off a new business. What she doesn’t know is that he’s also planning a perfect proposal when they revisit the resort where they met.
They’re joined by Megan and Sean, who never got past a first date but are definitely still interested in each other, if they can find the time. They’ve both taken on new jobs–his pace has slowed down while hers has ramped way up, but the weekend presents an opportunity to reconnect.
Cole says she hopes they’ll do a third installment. “I think there’s no way it’s not going to happen. As long as the fans ask for it, Hallmark is good about listening to what they want, and I think that’s how we got this one, because the fans were really drawn to the two storylines,” she says. “To make a wedding would really be nice.”
“We just shot it in November in Winnipeg when the weather was cold enough to shoot cold for cold. [The sequel] popped into everybody’s mind around TCA time [last January]. We proposed the idea at the TCA last winter, and last summer, we talked about getting it in the works. We had to get the script tuned up and focus on the relationships and it all came together.”
“We work really well together. We’re family at this point. It’s really easy to know that you’re going to have fun on set. It’s really helpful. It’s a bit of a sigh of relief. You’re not going to have to wonder if you’re going to be compatible. We already have our flow and chemistry and [it’s easy] to get back into it.”
Cole says she got to snowboard a little bit for real this time, and while the fondue scenes were fun in the original movie, this time around, they had to factor in a flu-ridden Bernard. “We were all looking forward to it and she got so deathly sick with the flu.,” she explains.
“During the fondue scene, she couldn’t dip any of her food in, so I was left to eat all the fondue, which was great for the first three takes. After that you get a little nauseous. There was supposed to be another fondue scene and we scratched it for drinks. I would have had to eat it all again and I was already a little woozy.”
In next weekend’s Ruby Herring Mysteries: Silent Witness, Cole plays the titular Ruby, a consumer affairs reporter who accidentally falls into a murder investigation during her sister’s wedding weekend. She calls on her dad, a well-regarded veteran crime reporter (played by Cole’s real-life stepfather, Shawn Christian) for insight and uses her easy familiarity as a reporter to solicit additional help from old friends and new faces. This of course isn’t an ideal situation for the newly transferred detective, Jake Killian (Return to Christmas Creek‘s Stephen Huszar), assigned to work the case.
Cole loved the script when it came her way and was happy to revisit some of the detective territory she played in The Glades and CSI: Miami. She was thrilled that it came with the opportunity to potentially do a few a year, and she pitched Christian to join her.
“I was shooting One Winter Proposal and they contacted me. I read it and it was one of my favorites. The storyline, the characters, everything makes sense. Nothing feels forced. Everything feels natural and you want to hear more. The storyline between her and her father is really enticing, and it sets up a good potential arc for all the characters to delve into what makes them tick,” she shares.
“This one has a lot of heart and family ties and the love is always going to be there. With the family, it will appeal to a lot of people. She has this insecurity about filling her dad’s shoes and she doesn’t want to let anybody down. She falls into this particular crime scene and investigation and has her dad to lean on.”
“He encourages her to listen to her Herring hunch and [tells her] that she’s got it in her blood and she can do it. If she has something to offer the case, to hold back would be a disservice to anyone else. She’s propelled by him to follow through with what she as always meant to do.”
“If this one goes well, and everybody likes it, hopefully we’ll do three a year. The writers [Andrea Canning and Lynn Keller] work in the newsroom and so they have a stockpile full of real stories. This was loosely based on real events and that’s something I’m looking forward to.”
“Things that couldn’t possibly be real, but they are. It’s like being on a series. You get to revisit that character and follow through with a long-term storyline with the freedom to do other stories in between. It’s a dream job. I’m really very excited and so grateful.”
Cole will be live Tweeting both movies. You can catch her on Twitter here.
One Winter Proposal airs Saturday at 8 pm/7c on Hallmark Channel immediately following an encore of One Winter Weekend. Ruby Herring Mysteries: Silent Witness airs next Sunday at 9 pm/8c on Hallmark Movies & Mysteries. Here are sneak peeks of both.
All photos courtesy of Crown Media United States LLC.
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