'Country at Heart': Meet the cast of Hallmark's new original movie on the theme 'A Little Romance'
The original Hallmark movie 'Country at Heart' is set to debut on October 3 after having been originally removed from Hallmark Channel's Fall Harvest line-up in 2019. Due to the current health crisis and Covid-19 pandemic, it was reported that Hallmark was unable to do their Countdown to Summer or the June Wedding themed movies this spring. However, the network has a new theme for its users — A Little Romance — and with it comes the premiere of 'Country at Heart'. This musical love story sees a country singer joining forces with a Nashville songwriter feeding her inspiration, but the duo comes up with more than just a hit song. Directed by Bradley Walsh, the romance-drama has a star-studded cast, here's what you need to know about them:
Jessy Schram as Shayna
You may recognize Schram as Hannah Griffith from 'Veronica Mars' (2006), or as 'Larissa' from Nickelodeon's sitcom 'Drake & Josh' (2004) from the episode titled, 'Number One Fan'. Hallmark writes that Schram is not only a film and television actress but also a singer and a songwriter. "I tend to be a jam-band fan, and I love The Rolling Stones," the actor has been quoted to have said. This isn't the first time Illinois born Schram works with Hallmark, her other Hallmark roles include, Caitlyn Enderby in 'A Royal New Year’s Eve,' Gwen Turner in 'The Birthday Wish' and Maggie Baker in 'Road to Christmas.'
The actress has had many regular roles in genres other than romance such as when she portrayed Karen Nadler in 'Falling Skies' (2011-2014), Christine Kendal in 'Last Resort' (2012-2013), and Bonnie Whiteside from award-winning and critically acclaimed series 'Mad Men' (2014). With a crisp resume and quite a bit of experience, Schram has worked alongside big names such as Lake Bell, Jon Bernthal, Finn Wittrock, and Emilie de Ravin. Her other works include Rachel Seybolt in 'Life' (2007-2009) and Cinderella/Ashley Boyd in 'Once Upon a Time' (2011-2018).
Niall Matter as Grady
Matter is a Canadian actor and producer, and most remember him from his roles as Sapir in 'The Predator' (2018) alongside award-winning actor, Sterling K. Brown, Evan Cross in 'Primeval: New World' (2012-2013), and Zane Donovan in 'Eureka' (2007-2012). Hallmark writes that the actor used to work on oil rigs before going forward with a career in acting. The first role that put him on the map was his role as Trent Hamilton in 'The Best Years' in 2007.
The actor has made his name known both in the United States and his home Canada, as he's guest-starred in hit shows such as 'The Good Doctor,' 'Supernatural,' and 'iZombie.' The OG's might also remember him from his recurring role as Greg in '90210' (2011-2012). This is also not the first time Matter has worked on Hallmark project — he's played Clay Castleberry in 'Stop the Wedding,' Adam Clayborn in 'Frozen in Love' (2018), Ian in 'Finding Father Christmas,' 'Engaging Father Christmas,' and 'Marrying Father Christmas.'
Lucas Bryant as Duke
Born and raised in Ontario, Canada, Bryant has worked both in the United States and Canada. Hallmark writes that the actor had studied theatre and drama at Oakville's Sheridan College. He is also most recently known for his role as Nathan Wuornos in Syfy’s popular mystery series, 'Haven' alongside Emily Rose. The actor is known for his roles as Tucker in 'Queer as Folk' (2000), Gabe McCall in 'M.V.P.' (2008) for SOAPnet, CBC, and as Milo Vanderbeer in 'Sex, Love & Secrets' (2005) for UPN. Bryant has starred in other Hallmark productions, with his roles as Tom Nowak in 'Tulips in Spring' (2016) and Colin Fitzgerald in 'Summer Love' (2016).
It was reported that on the theatre front, Bryant works include ''The Crucible', 'The King & I' and 'Your Tricks Might Be Poison.' Hallmark also writes that the actor formed Skyarsgard Players theater company with some of his friends in " in honor of veteran Swedish actor Stellan Skarsgard" - 'Are you There God? It's Me, Margaret' is their all-male production based on a novel by Judy Blume. Some of the other acclaimed works by Bryan include his roles in 'The Girl King' (2015), 'Secret Summer' (2016), and 'Shoot The Messenger' (2016).
While Schram, Bryant, and Matter are the main characters, supporting actors include Annastasia Boston, Telysa Chandler, William C Cole, Yvonne E. Davidson, Chris Handfield and many more. The official synopsis reads, "A struggling country singer meets a Nashville songwriter in need of inspiration. Teaming up to write a song, their work gets complicated but results in both a hit song...and true love." Catch 'Country at Heart' on October 3 at 9 pm ET on Hallmark.