Lucas Bryant Talks Time for You to Come Home for Christmas [Exclusive]
[Warning: General spoilers ahead.]
Next year will be our 10th year at TV Goodness, and one of the shows we leaned way into in our early years was Syfy’s Haven. We loved the show and its trio of leads, Lucas Bryant, Emily Rose, and Eric Balfour. Bryant gifted us with two Hallmark movies toward the end of Haven‘s, Tulips in Spring and Summer Love, back in 2016.
After a three-year gap (during which I have whined repeatedly behind the scenes that we needed him back), he returns to Hallmark Sunday night, starring opposite Alison Sweeney in Time for You to Come Home for Christmas, so of course I had to get him on the phone to catch up.
It’s so good, y’all. A follow-on film, in name only, to last Christmas’s Time for Me to Come Home for Christmas, the new film stars Sweeney as Kat, a widowed single mom who finally makes her way home for the holidays for the first time since the death of her husband two years earlier. She and her son, Will (Kiefer O’Reilly), take the train and strike up a friendship with Jack (Bryant), who’s on his way there, too, for a mystery purpose that unfolds over the course of the film.
Bryant says the film segued from another Hallmark project, Country at Heart, which was postponed from its original fall launch to 2020. He’s proud of both projects, which have the shared bonus of letting him show off his musical skills.
“That happened out of nowhere but was a real blast to shoot because I got to play a country music star and I got to play guitar and sing, which was wild. We had a really good time shooting that one and I think what we did is awesome. [Niall Matter and Jessy Schram are] fantastic. And the script was fantastic. I mean everything about it was awesome,” he shares. [Update: Country at Heart premieres Saturday, October 3rd, at 9 pm/8c on Hallmark Channel and W Network in Canada. My interviews with Jessy Schram and Niall Matter are here.]
“I’ve always played music. I played piano and guitar as a kid and as a teenager…never enough to blow anyone’s mind but it’s my own fun. I went to theater school for musical theater. I’ve been a song and dance man.”
While on Haven, Bryant says they tried to get a musical episode off the ground but the idea never gained any traction. “I pushed every single year. I don’t know if there was some challenge. There were people that were really on board for that. But I think there must’ve been a number of, or at least one, very powerful person that that wasn’t [so] they said no,” he recalls.
“Emily and Eric and I, we all play and sing, and so we were doing little concerts, little shows in the town, in Chester, Nova Scotia, where we were shooting and were always sending footage and arrangements to the writers and producers in hopes of kicking off our musical episode. [One idea was that] could be someone’s Trouble [that we’re all breaking into song]. We talked about a number of possibilities, but no.”
Time for You to Come Home for Christmas followed closely after Country at Heart, which filmed early this fall, wrapped production. “[This] just turned around pretty quickly after that one. There was talk about the possibility of doing [another project that] maybe also involved some singing and playing and I said, ‘Yes, by all means,’” he shares.
“[Alison] is a total pro and a lovely human being. A good friend of mine had worked with her for a number of years, so I got all the inside scoop from him and we totally hit it off.”
“I was attracted to [the idea that] there was an element of mystery to it. We didn’t exactly know where [Jack] was coming from and why. And it was just a simple, heartfelt, lovely story. Alison and I had both endeavored to keep it as real as possible. I think the thing that is attractive [about these] movies is the heart and the human story.”
“Sometimes, if it’s just a [happy-go-lucky] Christmas story, some of that can be lost, so, we just tried to keep going back to the simple, family connection. What was impressive to me about the script, initially, was that it was not trying terribly hard to do much of anything except for tell this woman’s story in a simple way. And I think we did that.”
Bryant also appreciated the familial element of Jack bonding not only with Kat, but her son, Will, too. “I really liked that aspect of the script and story. In general, I love working with kids or younger actors, but there was something really nice about the character of Jack needing to develop a relationship with her son, but that there was nothing forced or pushed about it,” he explains. [They] seem to have an easy rapport and that essentially made it easier for [Kat] to accept the possibility of them coming together.”
Earlier this year, Bryant had an arc on Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D and says it was a fantastic experience. “That was a blast. First of all, it’s an awesome show that has been going on for a while and has tons of fans, for good reason. It shoots here in LA [where I live], which is a lovely departure from [working away from home]. So that was a beautiful thing to do,” he shares.
“We were so spoiled on Haven to have such a great community around the show, really fantastic friends, all the actors and crew and production. It was just a really incredible family that we developed over a number of years out in that weird place in Nova Scotia.”
“[Since then], I have learned not expect that necessarily on other projects. And my experience immediately on Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D was that they have also created something really warm and welcoming and loving and a beautiful family that they’ve got going on. I was really, really lucky to be welcomed there.”
You can also catch Bryant on Amazon Prime in 7 Days to Vegas, a road movie comedy that’s the directorial debut of Balfour. “It’s a complete mystery how he actually did it. Obviously, Mr. Balfour is a talented person. We have all witnessed and experienced that. But, what an amazing director,” says Bryant.
“He really blew my mind. He didn’t have a giant budget for that project, but he really, really impressed me with what he was able to do and in a super short time with limited resources and a smile on his face the whole time, just total pro.”
“First of all, to get to do some comedy…I’m very happy to do, any opportunity I get. It was a real departure from the TV stuff I’ve been doing. [My] character is a movie star who has made some poor life choices and is battling to try and come back from some of those.”
In the Season 3 premiere of Private Eyes, which has yet to air in the US on ION, Bryant revisited some of the Haven family. “Any time I can [guest on that show], I will. [It was] a total mini Haven reunion with [showrunner] Shawn Piller and Mr. Jason Priestley and Colin Ferguson and Laura Vandervoort,” he says. “I just spoke to Shawn the other day actually and told him I need my fix again to bring me back into that fold. I’m happy to be there.”
Time for You to Come Home for Christmas premieres Sunday night at 9 pm/8c on Hallmark Movies & Mysteries. Here’s a sneak peek. In case you missed it, my chat with Alison Sweeney about the film is here.
Photos and Video Courtesy of Crown Media.
This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.
Catching Up with Ted Lasso and Previewing Season 2
[Warning: General spoilers ahead.] The not so dirty little secret about how I approach a new series is that I sometimes make a call based on the headspace I’m in at the time. It’s been a minute since I’ve picked up a show after the first season and then binge…
Interview: Henri Esteve on Grown-ish Season 3
An interview with Henri Esteve, who plays Javi on Freeform’s Grown-ish. He talks about his season three experience.
For All Mankind Season 2: Talking with Wrenn Schmidt, Krys Marshall, Jodi Balfour, and Sonya Walger [Exclusive]
[Warning: General spoilers ahead.] One of the hooks of For All Mankind is that it’s very much a story about the women of NASA. In Season 2, we explore the journeys of the women in the program, either through their own service or through their family affiliations. Four of those…
Rosy McEwen Talks The Alienist: Angel of Darkness Season Finale [Exclusive]
[Warning: Spoilers for the season finale episodes.] How’s everyone after that finale? I will freely admit I got a little misty in episode eight as John told Sara why he loved her, and later that he wanted her despite what he might forfeit, and then at the end when he…
Rosy McEwen Talks The Alienist: Angel of Darkness [Exclusive]
Hands down, one of the best surprises of The Alienist: Angel of Darkness is that the serial killer this season has been front and center alongside the cast as a fully-formed character. We’ve watched Libby Hatch devolve from a prim, mild-mannered nurse to a woman in a rage hell-bent on…
The Alienist: Angel of Darkness Relationship Recap: John and Sara
[Warning: Spoilers for “Belly of the Beast” and “Memento Mori”] If you’ve read me for a while (thank you!), you know two things — I lean way, way in on the characters I adore and I loathe love geometry arcs. So, I’m torn about where we are and where we…
Louriza Tronco Talks The Order Season 2 [Exclusive]
[Warning: Spoilers ahead for Season 2.] The Order’s second season is dark yet delightful entertainment on many levels, and one of its biggest sources of joy and snark is the sassy Gabrielle Dupres. Last season, she was assertive and deadly and fairly annoyed with the world. This season, she’s been…
Previewing Netflix’s Virgin River
[Warning: General spoilers ahead.] Full disclosure: I have a Netflix account for my Mom, but I’m not a regular viewer. If I get a heads up on something, I’ll go look for it, but I don’t have a wander across its offerings, which, as I understand it, is how most…
Final Thoughts From the Killjoys Team [Exclusive]
This is the day of the week I’d normally hit you up with a Killjoys preview, but now that we’ve put the series to bed and released Team Awesome Force into the wild, I have one more treat for you–some final thoughts excerpted from my conversations with the Killjoys folks….
Michelle Lovretta Talks Wrapping Up Killjoys [Exclusive]
[Warning: Spoilers for the series finale.] To quote Miss Jackson, “That’s the end?” Yes, friends, it is. And like I promised you, everything would be, was, and is alright. I went to the Killjoys source, series creator Michelle Lovretta, who wrote the last episode, to break down that delicious finale….
What They Said: Three Revealing Conversations from Survivor’s Remorse “Closure”
WARNING: Spoilers for Survivor’s Remorse “Closure” The latest episode of Starz’s Survivor’s Remorse featured conversations that showed characters really digging deep into their thoughts, emotions and motivations.
Two Takes: The Catch “The Knock-Off”
Who can you trust? If this episode of The Catch was any indication, the answer is just about nobody. Betrayal was running rampant as Felicity (Shivani Ghai) arose from the dead to seduce-con Margot, Gretchen (Maria Thayer, Gotham, The Mindy Project) played gold-hearted Alice 2.0 before swindling Ethan, Tessa jumped…
What They Said: Top 3 Quotable Moments from Preacher “El Valero”
Both Quincannon and Jesse refuse to give up on what they each think is rightfully theirs. While Jesse is struggling to face the consequences of his actions, Quincannon has laid his past demons to rest and is hellbent on moving forward and putting Annville on the map again. Despite a…
What They Said: Favorite Quotes from Supergirl “Worlds Finest”
Oh, Supergirl. That ending was cold. But I can’t hate on you because the latest episode has quickly become one of my favorites.
What They Said: Top 4 Quotable Moments from Black Sails “XXIII”
The dialogue in “XXIII” is phenomenal. It’s always a fun ride when Black Sails carries its viewers along without giving them the chance to catch their breath. When an episode moves at this unforgiving pace, there is no chance for a breather nor is there a respite from the information…
What Lucifer Said: Favorite quotes from Supernatural “O Brother, Where Art Thou?”
Supernatural episodes are almost always funny but thanks to the dialogue and a certain man speaking said dialogue, I laughed a lot during “O Brother, Where Art Thou?” You know, when I wasn’t busy fearing for Sam’s life or wondering what in the world was going on with Dean and…
What They Said: The Flash, “Legends Of Today” and Arrow, “Legends Of Yesterday”
Two nights of Arrow +Â The Flash = what more could we ask for?! I don’t know what it is about blending these shows, but I canâ€™t help but feel that every time they come together, they somehow become greater than the sum of their parts. And thatâ€™s saying a lot…
What they Said: Top 4 Quotable Moments from Graceland “Little Bo Bleep”
Shoot outs. Fake outs. And long-awaited revelations. “Little Bo Bleep” was a jam-packed episode that wrapped up some loose ends and totally frayed others. Â It finally gave us one Sarkissian in jail and pulled back the curtain on Briggs’ master plan, but it also set up Jakes for a world…
What They Said: Favorite Quotes from Poldark “Part 4”
â€œWhat have I told you, I don’t require my wife to crochet and sip tea, but I do require her to remember she’s not a beast of burden.â€ No, Iâ€™m not talking about The Rolling Stones! I have to admit though, just for a second, the lyrics popped into my…
3 Moments of Goodness from Brooklyn Nine-Nine “Johnny and Dora”
The most satisfying part of this season’s finale has to the Jake and Amy kiss. Well, they kiss three times but the last one is the best one — and it means something. The Charles and Rosa dynamic was also great. I love how she’s convinced he doesn’t know anything…