Hallmark Channel’s longest running, most-watched primetime series ever, When Calls the Heart is getting a spinoff to premiere in 2019 on Crown Media Family Networks’ SVOD subscription service, Hallmark Movies Now. This was one of several announcement made by Crown Media at TCA, including a mystery movie headlined by soap star Susan Lucci.
When Hopes Calls (working title) is the first original streaming series on Hallmark Movies Now, which launched in October 2017 and gives subscribers access to nearly 1,000 hours of family friendly content not available on Crown Media’s linear channels. The mothership series, When Calls the Heart is heading into its sixth season on Hallmark Channel.
“When Calls the Heart has developed a passionate community of loyal viewers and we wanted to serve their increased appetite by developing a spin-off series that we know will evolve into another beloved classic,” said Michelle Vicary, EVP, Programming and Network Publicity, Crown Media Family Networks. “When Hope Calls is a seamless fit to debut on our streaming service, Hallmark Movies Now, and speaks to our dedication to our loyal fans.”
No details about the spinoff series were disclosed.
Hallmark Movies & Mysteries has closed a development deal with Susan Lucci. She will star in and executive produce a mystery movie based on the novel Charley’s Web by Joy Fielding. It will focus on a columnist who uncovers the truth behind the crimes in the community.
“We are honored to begin a mystery movie partnership with television icon Susan Lucci,” said Vicary. “We are excited to bring her creative storytelling, enthusiasm and passion for television to our viewers and bring her perspective to the mystery genre.”
Lucci became famous for her non-winning Emmy streak, winning her first Daytime Emmy after 19 nominations for All My Children. Her series credits also include Devious Maids and Hot in Cleveland.