Monday, June 12, 2017

Cameron Mathison & Andie MacDowell to Star in the Hallmark Movie Adaption of Jan Karon's "At Home in Mitford"


Hallmark Press Release:


HALLMARK CHANNEL ANNOUNCES
PRODUCTION START FOR

‘AT HOME IN MITFORD,’

A HALLMARK CHANNEL
ORIGINAL MOVIE STARRING

ANDIE MACDOWELL AND
CAMERON MATHISON

PREMIERES EXCLUSIVELY
ON HALLMARK CHANNEL,
AUGUST 19 (2017)

Photo: AndieMacDowell - Crown Media Family Networks
Photo: Cameron Mathison - Crown Media Family Networks

STUDIO CITY, CA – June 12, 2017 – Hallmark Channel announces the start of production of its newest Hallmark Channel Original Movie, “At Home in Mitford,” starring three-time Golden Globe Nominee Andie MacDowell (“Magic Mike XXL” “Cedar Cove”) and four-time Daytime Emmy Nominee Cameron Mathison (“Entertainment Tonight,” “Murder She Baked”). The World Premiere of “At Home in Mitford” is Saturday, August 19 (9 p.m. ET/PT, 8c) exclusively on Hallmark Channel.

“At Home In Mitford” is based on the best-selling novel by Jan Karon.
The film tells the romantic and inspirational story of best-selling author Cynthia Copperstone (MacDowell), a woman who’s learning there is more to life and love than completing checklists. With her cat (and muse), Violet in tow, Cynthia leaves Boston to spend some time in her late uncle’s small town of Mitford, North Carolina, in hopes of alleviating some career-damaging writer’s block. Cynthia soon finds the heart and soul of the southern town in Father Tim Kavanagh (Mathison), a pastor in Mitford. As the pair works together to help a young boy Dooley (Nicholas Holmes) who has recently lost his family, Cynthia and Pastor Tim find solace, comfort, even romance.

“At Home In Mitford” is a Mitford Films, Inc. production. Andie MacDowell and Howard Braunstein are Executive Producers. Christian Bruyere is Producer. Gary Harvey directs from an original screenplay written by Margaret Oberman and Pam Wallace. Script is based on the beloved novel of the same name by Jan Karon.


(------END of PRESS RELEASE------)




My Take:

I am absolutely delighted to see the book At Home in Mitford finally become a movie! (especially a Hallmark Channel movie!) Jan Karon's work is an engaging masterpiece, a grand puzzle of many pieces that fit all together- in the way she beautifully weaves all of these stories to bring together so many of the townspeople, in the fictional town of Mitford, with their unique, run-of-the-mill, yet fascinating everyday lives! It is sincerely amazing! A true gift from God!

Since this is a bestseller, I'm sure many of you are also familiar with these stories. My first introduction to the At Home in Mitford series was from my Momma (several years back!)... who learned about it from Focus on the Family's Radio Theatre! Without any hesitation, after hearing an excerpt on the radio, we ordered the audio set - based on the first book. It was beyond wonderful! In the audio adaption, Dean Jones (popular from the classic Disney Movies, such as: "Herbie, the Love Bug," "Snowball Express," "That Darn Cat," etc...) voices the character of Father Timothy Kavanagh, a single bachelor Episcopal priest. It is certainly more, though, then just a voice... there's a deep warmness in Dean Jones' tone, a gentle spirit, whose faith exudes in his every word. And, then you add in the precocious, abandoned young boy Dooley who winds up at Father Tim's doorstep... well, from there, as you might guess, I was hooked, line and sinker!

For this upcoming Hallmark movie adaptation, I am pleasantly surprised by the casting choices. Cameron Mathison has a sweet-tempered quality about him that would fit Father Tim nicely (*However, I agree with comments below - he doesn't quite fit the age or image we think of for Father Timothy, from the books) and Andie MacDowell has that honeyed southern charm quality about her that will be interesting to see in the role of author Cynthia Copperstone. (*Not sure, however, how well these two will match up!) (Another Note: Andie MacDowell is a Southerner and Cynthia Coppersmith (that is her last name in the books) is not. That's why I said it would be interesting to see Andie portray this non-Southern character in the fictional Southern town/village of Mitford, nestled in the North Carolina mountains.)

Now, I just wonder if Hallmark's famous "Happy the Cat" will portray Cynthia's cat, Violet! In the stories, she is a white fluffy cat, so I don't think that will work, unless they decide to change her character up for the movie, too.

The Mitford book series has been so widely popular... that it has spawned off cookbooks (includes Louella's Cinnamon Rolls, Lottie Greer's Fried Chicken and Country Biscuits, Cynthia's Lasagna, etc...), childrens books (about Violet, Cynthia's cat), plus Hallmark Keepsake Ornaments, etc!!! And, now a Hallmark movie!

I hope you will join me in looking forward to seeing "At Home in Mitford" this August 19th on the Hallmark Channel! Please share your thoughts in comments below! I would love to know... Are you new to these books? Or, have you read this series? If so, where did you learn about them? Or, anything else you would like to share about this upcoming Hallmark Movie!

Blessings to you all, Net




Here are some wonderful quotes from the book -
At Home in Mitford:


“Lord, make me a blessing to someone today.”
― Jan Karon, At Home in Mitford


“Are you reading your Bible?”
"Ah, well...I was."
"And then you quit."
"You got it."
"Then, you can expect to be weak on one of your flanks, and that's precisely where the Enemy will come after you with a vengeance.”
― Jan Karon, At Home in Mitford

“Well, I'm going to church. But I've got to tell you that it's full of hypocrites.”
“My friend, if you keep your eyes on Christians, you will be disappointed every day of your life. Your hope is to keep your eyes on Christ.”
― Jan Karon, At Home in Mitford




Click Here for the Jan Karon Mitford Book Series!

43 comments:

  1. Actor picks for At Home in Mitford seem so completely wrong. But I suppose that shouldn't be surprising since you don't have Cynthia's last name correct in the press release! As a Mitford fan I am thinking this movie will be utterly disappointing.

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    Replies
    1. You are right, in the Hallmark press release it says Copperstone for Cynthia's last name. In the book series it is Coppersmith. It's possible they either made a mistake there or they decided to change it for some reason.

      Thank you, Lori, for sharing your thoughts on the cast chosen. I have discussed this with others who feel much the same as you do. Liking Cameron Mathison as I do, I'm inclined to give him a chance here, but, like you, I'm not sure he can possibly depict the Father Tim I have in my mind from reading the books. To be honest, I never considered Father Timothy to be that young or good looking. As for Andie MacDowell, as I said above, she definitely has that southern charm, but I am curious to see how she and Cameron will pair up together.

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    2. I agree completely! The ages of the stars are clearly too young for the movie?

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    3. I just wish this movie had been released years earlier so Dean Jones could play the role like he did in the Radio Theater production! By the way, WHO does the press release? It's painfully obvious that the person never even read the books!It's Coppersmith, NOT Copperstone! I wonder who will play Miss Sadie,Uncle Billy, Miss Rose, Emma, and the rest? I still can't wait to check out the movie!

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  2. I haven't read the books but is Cynthia older then Father Tim? McDowell is 59 and Mathison is 47. Seems like a big age difference. Would have liked to seen someone closer to her age. So many great "older" men actors like Henry Winkler, Patrick Duffy, Mark Harom or Beau Bridges.

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    Replies
    1. It's been a little while back since I've read the books, therefore I wasn't readily recalling the characters ages, so I looked it up just now and according to the Mitford wiki site, Father Timothy Andrew Kavanagh (Father Tim) turns sixty in At Home in Mitford!!!

      With that knowledge, and the basic physical characteristics of Father Tim in the books, you are so right, I must agree, Beau Bridges would have been a much closer pick.

      Should be interesting to see how Cameron plays the role. If you follow my site a lot, you probably know I adore him in all of his Hallmark roles... but, in my mind, I always thought Father Tim was more of a Jason Alexander (George Costanza, from Seinfeld) type.

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    2. Jan Karon's original pick when At Home in Mitford came out was Anthony Hopkins (think CS Lewis, not Hannibal Lecter). She also thought Blythe Danner would be great as Cynthia. I don't understand this casting at all.

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  3. Cameron Mathison as Father Tim? How is he going to portray "the portly priest" in his sixties? Andie MacDowell I can see as Cynthia, but really not sure how Cameron will work.

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    Replies
    1. This is definitely THE Question many Mitford book fans are asking! All I can say is, they must be taking certain liberties with the TV movie version.

      Thank you, Linnie, for commenting and sharing your thoughts!!! I don't know how this will pan out, but... I guess we shall see!

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    2. Exactly, "portly" and in his "60's"...

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    3. Cameron Mathison is probably protraying as Uncle Billy or Barnabus.

      Someone else is protraying as Father Tim in his 60s

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    4. No, it states in Hallmark's official press release above that Cameron Mathison is portraying the role of Father Tim. Barnabas is Father Tim's dog.

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  4. This news just made my day, no, my week;
    my summer!! Wonderful and exciting news.
    Yes, I'm a Mitford/Karon reader; in case you hadn't guessed. And I love the Hallmark movie channel.

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    Replies
    1. I'm so glad this news brought you so much joy, Sharon! I, too, am glad to see a story with such beautiful content of faith, love, community, struggles, and joys will be making it's way to the Hallmark Channel. I hope the story in the movie is just as heartwarming as the stories we find in the books!

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  5. I'm so afraid I'll be disappointed in this. These actors are great in their fields but they sure don't fit the characters in the books. Jam carefully describes her characters in her books and these just don't work. Father Tim is in his sixties and Cynthia is a petite blond.

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  6. While Cameron Mathison is a good actor, he is not old enough and way to thin to play Fsther Tim. This will not work at all. The movies never match the books. Did the casting director not read the books!!!

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  7. Replies
    1. If Cameron Mathison isn't portrayed Father Tim but someone else. He is probably portrayed Andie McDowell's Brother.

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    2. The Hallmark press release shared above states that Cameron Mathison will be starring as Father Timothy. I know... I get it... as much as I like Cameron, he doesn't fit the image we would expect of Father Tim from the Mitford books.

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  8. Squee!! What fun news, and there's only a little over two months to wait for it. Net, in regards to joining you in looking forward to this movie...consider it done!

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  9. That's great to know it's being made into a movie. I sort of remember the Focus on the Family audio version, but only caught a bit, so thanks for the reminder!

    Misty

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  10. Completely wrong casting. He is not chubby enough or based enough. And Andie is not right for Cynthia. Andie is too exposed already. Why not give another actress a chance? This couple of actors are very nice people, they're just wrong for this. Another Hallmark mismatch.

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  11. The best way to approach films "based on" books is to substitute the words "inspired by" for based on. That way we can all avoid the inevitable laundry list of complaints that will come from purists. This isn't PBS, folks - this is Hallmark Channel. Try to take it for what it is and enjoy.

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    Replies
    1. I'm with you! I'm gonna watch before I judge!

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  12. Oh dear, we've wanted a movie about Mitford for so long now but this sounds like a very loose adaptation. I love these actors, just wish we could have had Michael Kitchen as Fr. Tim, or a Mississippi version of him.

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  13. Shirley RobertsMonday, June 12, 2017

    We've all hoped for a Mitford Movie!!! Yay!!! These two actors....sigh..... ah well.... that's Hollywood....if Jan Karon approves.... why not.... I'm sure I'll love it just because it's Mitford!!!

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  14. This is such exciting news!!!!! I love that series of books. They are absolutely wonderful. Can't wait. I am marking my calendar for this one. WOW

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  15. I love the first Mitford book and the excellent Radio Theatre. Hallmark seems to have rewritten it. They seem to be making Cynthia the focus, not Father Tim. Cameron maybe, Andi McDowell NO! I'll give it a chance but leary about it. Will Hallmark have Father Tim quoting scripture? Or mild platitudes?

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  16. Oh my word! I love this, I read these books when I was younger. I always remember Dooley saying he was going to ride the hair off his horse, lol. I can not wait to see this and I love who they have staring in this as well. Thanks for the info Net. :)

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  17. Well, I am reading the comments now and Hallmark and the casting is...well.

    They are Hallmark and I always think they can not get a Brad Pitt or a A list star to act for the money etc.

    I give Hallmark a past and over look most of what happens in their movies because I love Hallmark movies.

    With that in mind, I say they did the best they could.

    I like both of these actors and I too think he is too young but I bet he can pull it off. Looking forward to this any way.

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  18. I will say no to Cameron Mathison, he is alright for "Murder She Baked" series but Father Tim is sacred and Cameron does not seem to be able to keep his shirt on,ever. Andie MacDowell is beautiful and graceful and she would be a good fit. I always imagined Father Tim being played by Gerald McRaney and Cynthia played by Delta Burke. I just want them to stick to the story as it is written, no changing it up so much that it is unrecognizable like they did with the Cedar Cove books.

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  19. I can really see Beau Bridges as Father Tim! Not sure about Cameron
    Mathison even though I love him in Murder she Baked movies. And Andie McDowell is too old for him! I agree with others that this is strange casting. I love The Christmas Ornament movie with Cameron and Kellie Martin, but they hardly ever show it anymore. Will have to hope Hallmark does Mitford justice!

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  20. No...no...no. This is my favorite book series, but this casting is all wrong. I love Cameron Mathison, but he is way too young, tall and thin. Richard Thomas (yes John Boy) would have been a much better choice.

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  21. Do you know where they are filming?

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    1. Yes, they are currently filming "At Home in Mitford" in British Columbia until June 30th.

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  22. The worse casting ever. Did they actually read the books? If you are going to adapt such a belioved series at least do it well. So very disappointed.

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  23. Thanks! So they are not filming at all in Blowing Rock, North Carolina?

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    Replies
    1. Unfortunately, no. For tax purposes a lot of films are done in BC or Vancouver.

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  24. Please correct Cynthia's last name. It is Coppersmith not Copperstone. And did anyone in casting actually READ this book before casting these actors?? Cynthia is supposed to be petite and blonde. Father Tim is losing his hair and described as "portly." These two actors do not fit the roles.

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    1. I know, you are right, jgirl. Cynthia's last name in the Mitford series is Coppersmith, but the press release direct from Hallmark above, says Copperstone. I don't know, yet, if they made a mistake or if they decided to change it for some reason. I'm sure we will find out soon.

      I noted in "My Take" above that Cynthia's last name was not the same.

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  25. Still trying to come to terms with this! WHYYYYYYYYYYY???

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  26. At Home In Mitford
    TV Movie
    06-12 to 06-30
    Andie MacDowell, Cameron Mathison, Nicholas Holmes, David Lewis, Ken Tremblett, Sarah Edmonson, Kehli O'Byrne, Chris Cope

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  27. Wonderful news that there will be a movie of the beloved Mitford--though I love these actors, not sure they fit the characters. I always wanted to see Michael Tucker as Father Tim and Blythe Danner as Cynthia.

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