When Calls the Heart is closing in on a decade on the air, but the Hallmark Channel series still has plenty more story to tell, executive producer Brian Bird says. As the beloved period drama waits on a season 10 renewal from Hallmark, he assured fans that the show will continue “no matter what.”
The Hallmark Channel series is a ‘healing agent in the culture’
When Calls the Heart premiered in 2014 and quickly won over Hallmark Channel viewers. The show recently wrapped up its ninth season with an emotional finale episode that saw Elizabeth (Erin Krakow) say yes to Lucas’s (Chris McNally) proposal of marriage and Rosemary (Pascale Hutton) and Lee (Kavan Smith) learn they were pregnant after years of trying for a baby.
The show’s heartwarming, faith-inflected stories have struck a chord with audiences that are craving wholesome television, Bird said in a recent interview with JLJ Media (via YouTube).
“This show is a healing agent in the culture in my opinion, and I think that’s why so many people watch it,” Bird said.
“I think we’re doing good work and I think we’re doing the right work on the show, but it’s not because of us, it’s that the audience is starved to death for this,” he added. “And when you give people food, they will just love you, they’ll be so loyal to you. And that’s why the audience keeps coming back every Sunday night. Shows this deep into their lifespan can get old, can get long in the tooth, and we’re not yet.”
‘When Calls the Heart’ is going to be ‘around for a long time’
Hallmark has yet to renew When Calls the Heart for season 10. But Bird isn’t fretting about the show’s future.
“I really don’t believe we’ve even peaked yet in this show with season 9,” he said. We will be around for a long time, I believe.”
Bird went on to point out that there was “unfinished business in Hope Valley” at the end of season 9, including Bill Avery’s (Jack Wagner) health concerns and Henry Gowen’s (Martin Cummins) legal issues. “We didn’t tie up everything in [the season finale]. Because we have no intention of riding off into the sunset ourselves with this show. We will never end the show unless we decided to end the show.”
Whatever happens with Hallmark, Bird believes When Calls the Heart will continue.
“I don’t know when season 10 or if season 10 will be announced 100%. But all I’m saying is we still feel like we’re going to go forward. And we will no matter what. I can say that,” he said.
‘When Calls the Heart’ spinoff ‘When Hope Calls’ moved to GAC Family
Bird has some experience with former Hallmark shows being picked up by another network. He is also an executive producer on the When Calls the Heart spinoff When Hope Calls. That show debuted on Hallmark Movies Now in 2019 and later aired on Hallmark Channel. But it’s moving to GAC Family for season 2.
Although Bird didn’t specifically mention GAC Family in his latest interview, he was confident that When Calls the Heart would live on even if Hallmark decides not to move forward with season 10.
“Whether or not the Hallmark Channel wants to keep us around forever, it doesn’t matter,” he said. “There will be somebody else who wants it because it is so unique. And we will keep making the show as long as those Hearties want to show up and watch the show.”
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