Is When Calls the Heart new tonight on Hallmark Channel? Originally, it was meant to be, but with everything that’s going on we have a change in the schedule.
As you probably know quite well at this point, the past seven days have been challenging for this show and its entire cast and crew. Lori Loughlin’s recent arrest amidst the college cheating scandal was a massive curve-ball thrown in the direction of this show — Loughlin has since been fired from all Hallmark-related programs and, to go along with that, there have been many conversations about the show’s long-term future and how to write out her character of Abigail. For now, the show is not airing a new episode tonight.
A few days ago, we recorded a video in which we discussed the situation, and also noted that the cancellation of the series was unlikely — you can check that out at the bottom of this article and if you want more news on the show then be sure to subscribe to CarterMatt on YouTube.
What we can add to this subject today is more reassurance from the series itself that Hope Valley is not going anywhere — even if Loughlin is. In a statement via Facebook, the network made it clear with the following statement:
Hearties, we assure you that Hallmark Channel has no plans to cancel When Calls the Heart. Hope Valley has many more stories left to share and we will let you know the details soon.
This statement was echoed further by executive producer Brian Bird (see the tweet below), who noted that the team behind the scenes is working tirelessly to bring you the rest of the season — though there are some key changes that need to be made.
Why not just air the already filmed episodes with Loughlin?
It’s a delicate situation Hallmark finds themselves in here, largely because they are a network with a particular image/brand and also one where some viewers may not understand that these episodes were filmed prior to Loughlin’s arrest. They’re not trying to punish any fans by keeping the show off the air until a creative solution is figured out; instead, they are trying to make the moves they deem necessary in order to preserve the series. That way, it can have many more seasons down the road without doing anything to anger fans or hurt their own brand.
It still has not been officially announced what When Calls the Heart is going to do in regards to the character’s status, though they do clearly have options. One of them is to try and edit Abigail out of the remainder of the upcoming episodes, whereas another is trying to minimize her story until they can film a proper end to her character. Another possibility, albeit a difficult one, would be recasting the character and then reshooting most of Abigail’s scenes with someone else in the role. It’d keep the story in tact, but it’d also prove costly since you’d have to dive into production with a lot of different people in the cast.
Hallmark claims that there will be more news “soon” on the future of When Calls the Heart … just know that there is no guarantee of a new episode airing next week either.
What do you think the producers of When Calls the Heart should ultimately do when it comes to this situation? Be sure to share now in the comments. (Photo: Hallmark.)