The stars of Hallmark’s latest Countdown to Christmas movie, A Dickens of a Holiday, know that technically, the film counts as a romantic comedy. It has all the necessary elements, including mistaken identity, unmet expectations, and the reunion of two single people who have had feelings for each other in the past.
But both Brooke D’Orsay and Kristoffer Polaha said the movie — which will premiere Friday, December 10 on Hallmark Channel — also reminded them of some important life lessons.
“Sometimes you only need one person to believe in you more than you believe in yourself,” D’Orsay said during a Facebook Live event to promote the movie.
“It’s a beautiful reminder…that when you put your attention on another person, you tend to grow yourself,” Polaha said
About the movie
In A Dickens of a Holiday, D’Orsay plays Cassie, a former high-school theater star who chased her dreams to Broadway, only to return to her hometown following a divorce.
Filled with regret at having poured all of her time and energy into her husband’s career, Cassie accepts the first theater job she can find: directing a local production of A Christmas Carol. But this isn’t just any staging of the holiday classic. Cassie’s hometown is Dickens, Ohio, the site of an annual weeklong Dickens Days festival, which always ends with a performance of the Christmas play.
Determined to put on a good show, Cassie tracks down a high-school classmate, Jake (played by Polaha), who has made a successful career as an action movie star.
But while she is intimidated by his success, he still has something to prove.
“He is not considered a great actor,” Polaha said. “People don’t think he can do much more than jump off a car.”
Hoping to land more serious roles, Jake takes the job. As per the romcom formula, they butt heads at first, but they soon learn from each other.
Learning from Scrooge
Both actors said the most significant lesson they took away from A Dickens of a Holiday is the importance of looking outward and paying attention to what other people are going through. Like Scrooge, both characters in A Dickens of a Holiday have lived in their own little worlds for far too long, Polaha said. But like Scrooge, Cassie and Jake grasp they have a chance to learn from their past mistakes.
“They’re making each grow,” Polaha said. “It’s a mutually beneficial relationship.”
A Dickens of a Holiday will air Friday, December 10 at 8/7c on the Hallmark Channel.