Ree Drummond Is Starring in the Food Network's First-Ever Holiday Movie
Every year, it feels like the Hallmark Channel couldn't lean any harder into the Christmas season without falling right through the December calendar. The cable channel's "Countdown to Christmas" — which is its almost nonstop lineup of holiday-themed made-for-TV movies — starts in late October and, according to some estimates, around 50 million viewers watch some part of its "Countdown" every year.
Unsurprisingly, this is a big, festive moneymaker for the Hallmark Channel: AdWeek previously estimated that the network earns around $390 million in ad revenue due to its Christmas blitz. So it's also unsurprising that other networks are trying to get their own slice of that holiday pie. On Wednesday, Variety reported that Ree "The Pioneer Woman" Drummond will be starring in the Food Network's first-ever scripted film, Candy Coated Christmas. (And before you say "Wow, I didn't know the Pioneer Woman was an actor," don't worry, you're not out of the loop – this is her first role.)
According to Variety, the movie's plot involves a woman who goes back to her mom's hometown — the seasonally appropriate Peppermint Hollow — after she has a minor career setback. Drummond is appearing as a bakery owner who becomes friends with the woman and introduces her to the Peppermint Hollow regulars. (And you know there's going to be some kind of blandly handsome bachelor involved, a local man with perfect teeth, an all-flannel wardrobe, and an impossibly charming career like "snow globe maker" or "sleigh waxer.")
Kathleen Finch, the chief lifestyle brands officer for Discovery, told the outlet that "it had been a dream" of the network to create a full-length film. "Ree is the epitome of a female-skewing Food Network talent," she said. "We put her and all these fun ideas into a pot and came up with this fun idea."
Drummond seems excited about what she's already jokingly referred to as "probably [her] last" acting gig. "I was certain I was gonna wind up fainting like those bridesmaids/groomsmen we used to see fall over on America's Funniest Home Videos," she wrote on Instagram. "Anyway, yeah—I was nervous filming this movie, because I am not an actor and being on a movie set in Utah was a whole different experience than filming a cooking show in my own kitchen. Fortunately, once a woman hits her fifties, the possibility of embarrassing herself really doesn't keep her from doing anything in life."
Candy Coated Christmas will air on Discovery Plus later this year and, of course, the Food Network will be planning some crossover Candy Coated Christmas programming. Finch told Variety that "more than 100 episodes" of the network's assorted programs between Halloween and New Year's will be holiday-themed.
If you're into All Things Holiday, then this is definitely your year. If not, well, at least you have a few more weeks to work on your Resting Scrooge Face.