Hallmark Channel is continuing the fine tradition of Christmas road trip movies, and we’ve got all the deets about where Cross Country Christmas was filmed, who’s in the cast, and what the movie — which airs Sunday, Dec. 20, at 8 p.m. EST — is about.
(For starters, don’t be fooled by the passing scenery! Thanks to some high-tech movie magic, a soundstage in Canada subbed in for the American heartland.)
Who’s in the ‘Cross Country Christmas’ cast?
Rachael Leigh Cook is probably the best-known cast member of Cross Country Christmas. She made her screen debut in the 1995 film The Baby-Sitters Club, but it was the 1999 rom-com She’s All That that made her a household name. On TV, Rachael has starred in the miniseries Into the West and the procedural Perception and recurred on the comedy Psych.
And Cross Country Christmas isn’t Rachael’s first TV movie: She has also starred in the Hallmark films Autumn in the Vineyard, Summer in the Vineyard, and Valentine in the Vineyard, for example.
Sharing the screen with Rachael is Greyston Holt, a Canadian actor perhaps best known for playing Clayton Danvers in the Syfy series Bitten. He also appeared on the shows Smallville, Fringe, Supernatural, and The 100, and he recently played Tyler on the CW drama Batwoman. Earlier this year, Greyston starred in the UPtv movie A Very Country Christmas: Homecoming, the third TV film in the A Very Country Christmas series.
The rest of the Cross Country Christmas cast includes Jon Cor, Luke Roessler, Keith MacKechnie, Robyn Bradley, Emma Oliver, Nils Hognestad, and Raylene Harewood.
What’s ‘Cross Country Christmas’ about?
In the movie, Lina and Max — who grew up in the same town but never became friends — are both traveling home from New York City for the holidays. And once they board the same flight, they find out that the Denver airport is closed due to inclement weather.
“With no flights out, they work together to make it home in time, no matter the mode of transportation,” Hallmark says in a press release. “The people they meet along the way, and the places they pass through, help them see Christmas — and each other — in a different way.” (Maybe there are places like home for the holidays!)
Where was ‘Cross Country Christmas’ filmed?
Turns out, the road trip movie didn’t involve a road trip: It was filmed in Langley, British Columbia, with LED screen technology providing the passing scenery. On Instagram, cinematographer Pieter Stathis shared a video of a stationary dog grooming truck in front of the screen, which makes it seem like the truck is traveling down a country road.
“It was a welcome change from doing green screen and giving it away to [post-production] to creating all of the lighting cues in real time based on real ‘virtual’ backgrounds and capturing everything in camera,” Pieter wrote in another Instagram post. “And it was a liberating experience for @rachaelleighcook and @greystonholt to act and interact with ‘real’ winter roads in their driving scenes — movie magic bringing Kansas to Vancouver.”
Cross Country Christmas airs Sunday, Dec. 20, at 8 p.m. EST on Hallmark Channel.