Interviews

Why Desperate Housewives star Teri Hatcher appreciates her new Hallmark movie Mid-Love Crisis

Teri Hatcher
Teri Hatcher from the Hallmark movie Mid-Love Crisis Pic credit: David Astorga/Hallmark

When Mindy Quinn (Teri Hatcher) is dealing with her upcoming 50th milestone birthday in the throes of a mid-life crisis, she begins to take stock of her life, her divorce, and her daughter Rita’s (June Laporte) impending surprise proposal to her girlfriend, Emily, (Matreya Scarrwener). 

Mindy, a single mom, is reunited with her former high school sweetheart, Sam (James Tupper) — her first love – and is joined for the family celebration by her ex-husband, Marc (Brian Markinson), at her lakeside home.

Much to her chagrin, both are vying for Mindy’s affection, leaving her a bushel of baggage — and lifelong memories — to navigate.

Complicating matters, Sam is Emily’s uncle. 

As the heartfelt movie Mid-Love Crisis progresses, Mindy learns a great deal about herself and what she wants and does not want in this new chapter of her life.

She also may find some magic and romance along the way.

Read on for more on Teri Hatcher joining the Hallmark family, reminiscing about Desperate Housewives, and why she loves learning the tango for a new L.A. production of The Addams Family.

Monsters and Critics: The last time we met in person was on Wisteria Lane on your hit series, Desperate Housewives. I’m sure you have fond memories of that time. 

Teri Hatcher: Wow! That’s been coming up a couple of times for me lately. I hope you have good memories of that beautiful location. Well, it was a bunch of really incredible castmates on that show, so I’m sure you got some good interviews. 

M&C: I definitely did. Let’s start with what attracted you to Mindy in Mid-Love Crisis.

Teri Hatcher: Mindy happens to be turning 50, but I think people, in general, once they get past 50, there becomes a lot of opportunities and moments, I think, where you start to reflect on has life gone the way I thought it would. And if the answer to that is “no,” what do you do with the anxiety that you feel from that awareness? How do you potentially shift and move forward into a different career, a different relationship, or a different level of acceptance of your own physical self and what it is or is not capable of? 

I think those things really come up for people anywhere between 50 and 60 in a major way, and I love being part of telling stories that are dealing with that.  And I think that is what Mindy is dealing with. She has the conflation of the stress from both her birthday, both the fact that her daughter is potentially proposing to her girlfriend. She runs into her first love from high school, that she hasn’t seen in 30 years. I think all of that is spinning her into these neuroses of questioning, “who am I and what is my future?”

M&C: Tell me about making the movie.

Teri Hatcher: This was shot near Vancouver, Canada, about 90 minutes east of Vancouver. It was located in a beautiful mountainous lakeside area with not a lot of wi-fi service and a ton of mosquitos. It was a beautiful place to film and it sort of allowed us to have a very quick building of a family of the cast and crew because we were kind of in the middle of nowhere. So, there wasn’t much to do other than go to work and go back to the hotel. 

Mid-Love Crisis scene
June Laporte, Matreya Scarrwener, and Teri Hatcher in the Hallmark movie Mid-Love Crisis Pic credit: David Astorga/Hallmark

M&C: What did you appreciate about Mid-Love Crisis? 

Teri Hatcher: It was a really relatable subject. I felt like the script and Hallmark specifically really allowed us to deal with it in a comedic-forward way, which I love, but also with some gravitas of the reality of we can joke about using Botox or what happens to you as you age, such as feeling invisible. They really allowed parts of the script to deal with that question, and of course ends up having a hopeful, happy ending because that’s very Hallmark. But I like finding acceptance and hope in the midst of an anxious time.

M&C: Did you and the other actors bond? 

Teri Hatcher: Well, there wasn’t much grandiosity to the space, so in the house that we were shooting in primarily for a lot of the movie, they made one of the bedrooms into a sort of a greenroom for the cast, and we would all kind of hang out. So, we wouldn’t go back to the place where we would get made up in the morning until the end of the night because we were otherwise on the set.

That does allow you to hang out with the crew, hang out with the cast, and bond. So much so that I have an apartment, I’m living in LA, but I have an apartment in New York, and one of the girls, Matreya Scarrwener, who plays my daughter Emily had never been to New York, and she really wanted to go there. I thought it was so crazy to me that an actress had never been there. So, I invited her to stay in my apartment this week that I was not using, and she was thrilled.

Brian, who plays my ex-husband, Marc, in the movie, and I became close friends. He and I have started a very competitive online Scrabble competition, so we’re constantly playing Scrabble with each other. He is always winning, which is starting to wear on me a tiny bit.  Yeah, so everybody really got along super well and really supported each other. It was a really fun group!

M&C: You started dancing and ballet at a very young age and continued for many years, so talk about the dancing in the movie. 

Teri Hatcher: I believe that dancing in the movie was a metaphor for burying what might be your freest spirit, and I think that happens to a lot of us, also. As we get into the adult world, then we’re taking care of our children, and we’re taking care of our job, whatever you feel like your daily must-dos are. I think often for people, what makes your heart sing sort of gets buried in a drawer because you just don’t have time for it, or maybe you tell yourself it’s not important.  And I think dancing for her, for Mindy, kind of became that. 

It was a thing that made Mindy feel alive that was sort of her true sense of spirit, and love, and creativity, and passion, and all those kinds of emotions, and that got buried and put away to make room for what life’s obligations were.  And so in this movie, I think that gets reignited, and I think it’s a really great physicality that you’re able to actually go dancing, which is what Mindy does in this movie.  And having that sense of freedom become reignited for her is all part of her awakening toward happier times that are coming in her future. 

Mid-Love Crisis scene
Brian Markinson and Teri Hatcher in the Hallmark movie, Mid-Love Crisis Pic credit David Astorga/Hallmark

M&C: It sounds like you still enjoy dancing.

Teri Hatcher: Personally, I love dancing. I was a professional dancer until I was 20 or so, and actually, I’m finding myself dancing again. I was doing the tango until almost 11 o’clock last night because I’m getting ready to play Morticia Addams in the musical The Addams Family in Los Angeles at the Thousand Oaks Civic Center. It’s a beautiful 2000-seat theater where I used to take my daughter to see The Nutcracker. So it was fun to do something locally, but also fun just to get back in on the stage. I haven’t been on the stage in 20 years since I played Sally Bowles in Cabaret, and I’m really looking forward to it. But I’m also kind of exhausted since it’s pretty much 10-hour-a-day rehearsals and a lot of dancing though; a legit tango is happening.

It’s my small version of Dancing with the Stars while not being on Dancing with the Stars. But I’m getting to do the tango and some things like that in this play, and we’re having a really good time.  It’s a really short run; we open on October 14 and run until October 23. But I think the opportunity came up, and I felt if I ever got the chance to be Morticia Addams, it’s almost a law that I needed to say yes to that iconic, wonderful character. 

But also, I thought, I have time now, which I haven’t had in many years, to perform in musical theater. I want to challenge myself and awaken a part of myself that has been very quiet for many, many years. Which is not dissimilar to what Mindy is going through. So I feel really fortunate.

I think dancing is important in our lives. One of the last things I did before that first Covid-19 shutdown in 2020 was I had been out that Friday night before at a country western bar, being twirled around the floor two-stepping. I think that happy evening that I had, right before the whole world shut down, really kept me in a good spirit of mind for those first few months of COVID.  I would dance around my kitchen island by myself, pretending that I was still in a country western bar. 

M&C: Talk about the mother-daughter relationships. Rita is her daughter, and Emily is going to be her daughter-in-law. I thought that was carried out extremely well.  Can you talk about that? 

Teri Hatcher:  Again, I think it’s super relatable. We want the best for our children, and I think often we confuse wanting to support what seems right for our children with making up for the mistakes that we think we’ve made. And I think Mindy is potentially looking back over her life and thinking, I should have done this, and I should have done that, and I want to help my daughter avoid making those mistakes.  But Rita maybe isn’t making the mistakes that Mindy made, so those things shouldn’t be mixed together and confused.

So, Mindy’s daughter, Rita, wants to propose to her girlfriend, and Mindy thinks she’s too young to get married.  And I think that’s a very legitimate, substantial area to look at, like, should people be getting married or getting engaged when they’re 23 years old?  Is that too young?  Can that be an individualized circumstance?  And in this case, I think Rita happens to be someone who really knows herself, and it’s kind of beautiful the way that story unfolds.  You’re seeing a mother trying to be protective but at the same time learning to be open.

Please talk about a great deal of inclusion in the theme of this movie.

Teri Hatcher: Yes. My daughter’s character Rita is gay and wants to be engaged to a woman. What I loved is that the way the normalcy of that scenario is, it’s not even mentioned. There’s no discussion about being gay. What the discussion is about is whether the girls are too young to get married. I really loved it, I think it’s about time that we present people and love in that way, so I think it’s a really well-written and a beautiful part of the story.

Mid-Love Crisis scene
Brian Markinson and Teri Hatcher in the Hallmark movie Mid-Love Crisis Pic credit: David Astorga/Hallmark

The movie examines relationships from many vantage points, especially because Marc wants her back despite their divorced status.

Teri Hatcher: True. You have to look at why would Mindy have married Marc in the first place. I think when you’re young, and you’re in med school, if you imagine that, he was like maybe the top of his class and a very good doctor.

You can sort of assign personality traits like controlling, disciplined, and whatever it would have taken for him to be that. And maybe when you’re a young person, that seems very appealing, to be kind of in the safety of that. I think his character actually learns something throughout the journey of this movie too. That he made a mistake by walking away from someone who’s a pretty incredibly loving and creative person.

M&C: What were the messages or life lessons?

Teri Hatcher:  It’s never too late for love. I think maybe it’s also it’s never too late to change. It’s never too late to try something new. 

M&C: So, this is your second movie for Hallmark.   

Teri Hatcher:  Yes, the first one was the Christmas movie that I did with James Denton last year. He and I both loved the opportunity to offer a nod to all of the Desperate Housewives fans who were more than disappointed by the ending for our characters, Susan and Mike. So that was our intention, to send off a version of those characters with a different ending.

Then this opportunity came up to make Mid-Love Crisis. I think I’m very new to the Hallmark family; I had such a wonderfully creative experience with the executives over at Hallmark on this movie that I would really welcome broadening that.

M&C: Are you amazed that Desperate Housewives is currently being streamed by large numbers of viewers and gaining new die-hard fans?

Teri Hatcher: The streaming situation has turned the whole entertainment industry into a completely different thing than it was when I started acting. I found that even my daughter, who’s about to turn 25, and her friends didn’t watch Desperate Housewives when it first aired because they were too young.  And all of her friends during the pandemic were calling her going, “Oh my God, I get who your mom is now.”  Because for them, I was just a mom who organized playdates, and threw Halloween parties, birthday parties and helped with homework and the PTA.

But now her friends are like, ‘Oh my god, that show is so great.’ So, it is funny to see just whole new generations of people getting excited about it. And the same thing with Lois & Clark. I meet people who were fans of the show, and then they have children who watch the show. I guess all I can say is that it makes me feel good that I’ve been a part of a few different pieces of entertainment that have offered joy to generations of people. That’s a beautiful thing that I feel really grateful for.

Mid-Love Crisis scene
James Tupper and Teri Hatcher in the Hallmark movie Mid-Love Crisis Pic credit: Dave Astorga/Hallmark

M&C: Lastly, what are all the reasons that you want my readers to watch this movie?

Teri Hatcher: At the top of the list, they will be entertained. This movie is heartfelt and charming, and it will offer you laughs and maybe a few little tears. I think you will come out of it feeling good; having taken the little ride.

That’s what entertainment is. Whether you’re sitting down in front of some horror-drama thing or in front of a comedy, it’s a little ride that you decide to fasten your seatbelt and go on. I really think that people will enjoy this. It’s a bunch of really charming characters telling a heartfelt story that I think will have you feeling good after you’ve watched it.

Mid-Love Crisis premieres on Hallmark Movies & Mysteries on Sunday, October 9.

Desperate Housewives is streaming on Prime Video and Hulu.

For more Hallmark, check out Exclusive: Fall in love with Alexa PenaVega and her husband, Carlos, in their latest Hallmark romance.

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