Wonya Lucas

Now it’s new Hallmark vs. (sorta) old Hallmark

On the family-friendly side of the TV world, there’s scrambling in both directions:
— Hallmark is shedding its old ways. Now it has more diversity of people, more variety of styles; that’s clear in several projects, including “Unthinkably Good Things” (shown here), which arrives Aug. 28, 
— Meanwhile, others are grabbing chunks of the old Hallmark world. GAC (formerly Great American Country) has even signed some perpetual stars, led by Candace Cameron Bure and Danica McKellar.
“There’s a lot of talent … that GAC is now working with,” granted Lisa Hamilton Daly, the Hallmark programming chief. “But I think we are constantly trying to evolve our talent pool.” Read more…

At last: Hallmark Channel discovers diversity

The Hallmark Channel people say their shows are a lot better now … without quite acknowledging that they were a lot worse before.
The new-look Hallmark has more diversity, Wonya Lucas, CEO of the channel and its spin-off networks, told the Television Critics Association. It reflects “the complexity of what it means to love and be a family in a more authentic, varied and inclusive way.”
That includes racial and LGBT issues. “What I’m really excited about is our first gay lead,” said Michelle Vicary, the channel’s executive vice-president of programming.
She was talking about “Mix Up in the Mediterranean” (9 p.m. Saturday, rerunning at 7 p.m. Sunday, Feb. 20-21), with Jeremy Jordan, a Broadway star and a “Smash” and “Supergirl” co-star. “He plays twins …. One is gay, one is straight and, through a comedy of errors, they have to switch places.” Read more…