Lacey Chabert is, in our opinion, the reigning queen of Hallmark. With a full 35 movies under her belt at the completion of her latest trilogy, she deserves the title.
Her latest movie, airing tonight, reunites her with her Wedding Veil trilogy costars Alison Sweeney and Autumn Reeser for the first of another three movies featuring their characters.
The Wedding Veil Expectations takes us beyond the initial meet-cutes and proposals to what happens to a newly married couple once they settle into their life together.
If Lacey and her on-screen husband, Kevin McGarry, stole your hearts in The Wedding Veil, you’re going to adore their latest adventures.
We had the opportunity to chat with Lacey about the trilogy and the new chapters, and her new multi-picture deal with Crown media.
Earlier this year, you signed a multi-picture deal with Crown Media, so you must really enjoy bringing movies to viewers as much as we enjoy watching them.
Aw, thank you for saying that. I love making these movies. I think it was 12 years ago I did my first one called Elevator Girl, and I had no idea that it would turn into what it has.
I just completed the third Wedding Veil, which was officially my 35th movie for Hallmark. And I enjoy the different stories that I’ve been able to tell and be a part of. And I love that the movies are so hopeful. And I love hearing from the fans that the movies really mean something to their lives.
And how has how Crown Media’s expanding its content across these networks inspired your vision with this new production deal?
You know what? I have so many different types of stories that I hope to tell. I was thrilled that this year I was able to do a comedy for Christmas. That was something different. Haul Out the Holly was a really funny movie. And I had never done a straight comedy for a Christmas movie before.
The Wedding Veil trilogy is something that was definitely out of the box when they allowed us to do the first three movies. I’m so thrilled that they let us do another true trilogy.
It’s really exciting to see where these characters are in their lives because many of the movies end after that first kiss, or the characters get married, or right after they’ve fallen in love.
I feel like the audience always wants to know what are they like in the marriage or in their relationship once they’ve fallen in love. And we finally get to see that from all three women and their relationships.
And we also get to see the friendship between the three women develop and deepen and how they’re really there for each other. So I think, just generally, the storylines have deepened and really reflect life and that life is sometimes messy.
And while I’m thrilled that the movies always have a happy ending, because I think we all need that now more than ever, we’re trying to make it as interesting as possible.
I know that after so many, I just want to always raise the bar and elevate the material as much as possible. And I feel like I owe it to my audience to try and make each one better than the last.
And when you started The Wedding Veil trilogy, when did it first come to you that, yes, three Hallmark leading ladies should star together in something?
It had been a longtime fan request and question. Would some of the women from the network ever be in something together? Or we’d love to see you guys in something together. It was a longtime dream of mine come true when they green-lit The Wedding Veil trilogy.
Beth Grossbard brought this to me. She’s my producing partner on it, along with Lisa and the Berg sisters, who wrote it. It just felt like the perfect idea. I love that it was, at the heart of it, really about the friendship between these three women and how they’re there for each other through different phases of life.
But it was also three different, beautiful, romantic stories. And I was so happy when they let us do the three and even happier when our fans tuned in. It’s because people tuned in and showed up for the movie in a big way that Hallmark let us make three more of them.
You were used to reuniting with Brennan Elliott in the All My Heart series, which I also adored. What’s it been like creating this similar experience, revisiting these same characters now it’s going to be six full times?
Yeah. You know what? It’s been really special. We’ve had a lot of adventures together. In the first round, we went to Bulgaria, and part of it was filmed in Italy. And this time around, it was Bulgaria and Greece.
It’s been so nice to get to know Ali and Autumn in a deeper way. We relate to each other so much on different levels. We’re all mothers trying to balance all the parts of our lives. We’ve had a lot of really wonderful conversations about that and being supportive of one another.
It’s an interesting experience to share a movie with another woman who understands what it is to play that role at Hallmark, to be a woman in these movies typically. And to see their work ethic and their process has been inspiring and just a wonderful experience.
And back to Brennan, All of My Heart movies are some of my absolute favorites. And I love working with him so much. We’ve done nine movies together. And I think that we’re going to have the opportunity to reunite on something else very soon.
Oh, that’s great. It’s been a while, hasn’t it? A couple of years, at least?
It has. We typically work together quite often, and it’s been, I think, over a year since we’ve had the chance to. I miss him as a scene partner. Obviously, we keep in touch in real life because he really is a dear friend, but I can’t wait to be on screen with him again.
You and Kevin McGarry seem to have a really nice chemistry as well.
Kevin is wonderful. He is so funny. And it was just wonderful to reunite with him for this other movie. He makes me laugh. And he’s a great actor and just makes for a great scene partner.
I love seeing where Avery and Peter are in their life now that they’re married, and they have some exciting new chapters about to open up for them. And they’re renovating a house, and they’re at different places in their jobs and just trying to figure out real-life stuff.
There are some really funny scenes, I think, between you and Kevin, and just in the movie in general. What’s your favorite development between Peter and Avery in their marriage?
I think it’s the way that they roll with whatever comes their way. I think they have an ease and effortlessness with one another. And I think for Avery, the biggest thing she learns in this movie is to let go of being a perfectionist. And that’s something I’ve dealt with in my own personal life.
I think she learns to accept things are not always perfect and there’s beauty in imperfection. And sometimes, things are perfectly imperfect. And I think that’s where life can be spontaneous and really charming.
What’s the most important thing that you think people need to know going into expectations and the trilogy?
I think people are going to be excited to see Avery and Peter in their relationship, in their marriage and the challenges that are coming their way, and how they are actually falling deeper in love.
But I also think they need to understand that this is a different rhythm than all of the other typical movies. There isn’t a meet-cute; these characters are already in love. But for me, that’s so exciting because we get to see what it is for them to live their life together after the movie ends, which is an unusual thing.
Absolutely. And what is coming next for you? How soon are we going to see what you’re producing and what you’re bringing to the table?
I have a lot of things in development. I’m taking a little bit of time off to be with my family, and then I’m really excited about the stuff I have coming up. Unfortunately, I can’t tell you about it yet, which is always so frustrating.
But my main focus is really to tackle different types of genres with Hallmark and to continue to tell stories that people connect with and love. And I can’t wait to share what we have coming out very soon.
The Wedding Veil Expectations premieres tonight at 8/7c only on Hallmark Channel, and drop by afterward for a follow-up with Lacey as she shares thoughts about the material in the movie we didn’t want to spoil!
Carissa Pavlica is the managing editor and a staff writer and critic for TV Fanatic. She’s a member of the Critic’s Choice Association, enjoys mentoring writers, conversing with cats, and passionately discussing the nuances of television and film with anyone who will listen. Follow her on Twitter and email her here at TV Fanatic.