‘When Calls the Heart’: Production on Season 8 Set to Begin in July

Here’s an exciting update for Hearties. Production on the upcoming season on When Calls the Heart is set to begin in July in Vancouver. That’s good news for fans of the Hallmark Channel drama who might have been worried that the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic meant they would have to wait even longer than usual for new episodes of their beloved drama. 

‘When Calls the Heart’ will start production on July 20 

Elizabeth talking to Lucas
When Calls the Heart | ©2020 Crown Media United States LLC/Photographer: Ricardo Hubbs

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According to an article published in Canada’s Global News, When Calls the Heat is one of two productions set to begin production in Vancouver in late July. The family-friendly frontier drama will start shooting on July 20. ABC’s The Good Doctor is also set to start production on that date. 

Cast and crew for both shows will be working under pandemic safety plans and protocols, according to the report. That means adhering to physical distancing rules and limiting the number of people allowed on set at any one time. Actors will also have the right to refuse close contact with other performers, including hugging and kissing. 

“The actors are the most vulnerable because obviously when they’re doing that, they can’t be wearing personal protective equipment,” Phil Klapwyk of IATSE Local 891, a union representing professional artists and technicians in British Columbia and the Yukon told the publication.  

Executive producer Brian Bird confirms that people will soon be back at work on ‘When Calls the Heart’ 

On Twitter, When Calls the Heart executive producer Brian Bird appeared to confirm the July 20 start date for filming. He shared a link to the Global News article along with the comment, “Ahem #Hearties… you may want to put your reading glasses on for this…”

A number of fans responded to Bird’s tweet, commenting about how excited they were to hear that the show would be moving forward with new episodes.

Hallmark confirmed in late April that it was renewing When Calls the Heart for an eighth season. But at the time, film and TV production was shut down around the world. There was no indication when the cast might actually get to work on season 8, which is set to premiere sometime in 2021. 

Could filming restrictions affect ‘When Calls the Heart’ Season 8 storylines? 

Lee hugging woman while Rosemary watches
When Calls the Heart | ©2020 Crown Media United States LLC/Photographer: Ricardo Hubbs

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When Calls the Heart might be resuming production in just a few weeks, but a few fans are curious how safety restrictions will affect season 8 storylines. In particular, they’re wondering how a romance between Elizabeth (Erin Krakow) and either Nathan Grant (Kevin McGarry) or Lucas Bouchard (Chris McNally) might play out if hugging, kissing, and other forms of close contact are off the table. 

“This is good (start production) and a little sad: no hugging, kissing (actors’ choice) but totally understand,” one person wrote in reply to Bird’s tweet. “I guess it’ll be longing looks, sighs, smiles…  this may be difficult for some storylines to proceed.”

Another fan predicted that the upcoming season might involve a “little more comedy and drama.”

“I can see it now, ‘I choose you Nathan/Lucas’, and then they slightly lean in for an elbow [bump]!” one viewer joked. 

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