A Godwink Christmas is a holiday favorite on Hallmark Movies & Mysteries, originally having premiered in 2018. The movie stars Kimberley Sustad, Paul Campbell, and Kathie Lee Gifford. In the movie, according to Hallmark’s official synopsis, Sustad visits her aunt’s Nantucket home and meets a nice man at Martha’s Vineyard. But was the movie really filmed in these locations or anywhere in New England? Read on for more details.
Although the movie was inspired by the true love story of Gery and Paula Conover, who own the Charlotte Inn on Martha’s Vineyard, the movie wasn’t actually filmed there.
A Godwink Christmas was filmed in Gibsons, British Columbia, Vancouver, and other locations in Canada, according to What’s Filming. The movie was originally going to be called A Carousel Christmas (or a Christmas Carousel.) A few exterior shots, however, were filmed later at Martha’s Vineyard to give a more authentic feel, despite the movie itself being filmed in Canada.
Gibsons is a coastal town in southwestern British Columbia, Canada, with a population of about 4,600. It’s a seaside village accessible via a 40-minute ferry from Horseshoe Bay, Trip Advisor notes. The community also has “quaint shops, restaurants, and beautiful vistas. It makes a perfect day trip from Vancouver.”
One of the locations noted is Dave Coyle Antiques in Gibsons.
Although the movie wasn’t filmed at the Charlotte Inn in Martha’s Vineyard, the Inn is why this story was chosen by Hallmark executives, Vineyard Gazette reported. Squire and Louise (DuArt) Rushnell pitched the story. Squire was vice-president at ABC television and Louise was an actor and comedian. They wrote a series of Godwink books and are the executive producers of A Godwink Christmas. They pitched six Godwink stories to Hallmark, and Hallmark chose this one. They said this one didn’t have the big “wow” that some of the stories had, but the executives “loved the Martha’s Vineyard backdrop. They loved the sound of the Charlotte Inn,” Rushnell said.
Rushnell acknowledged that the location where the movie was filmed doesn’t look like Martha’s Vineyard. However, the mountains in Canada couldn’t be seen during filming (which would give away the different location) because of forest fires that were happening at the time. “There was a gray sky in the backdrop,” Rushnell said.
The movie was shot in the summer, so it required some “winter magic” by the production crew, Vineyard Gazette reported.
Coast Reporter noted that this included artificial snow, a 20-foot Christmas tree, a Christmas market, and ornaments and lights. (There was also a little mishap during filming, when a man who was doused in pepper spray crawled onto the set, needing medical attention. They helped him, dousing him with milk, during the filming. It turns out that he was pepper sprayed because of a fight over who owned a 27-foot Catalina sailboat called The Salty Dream, Coast Reported noted. The man who sprayed him was later arrested for assault.)
The Rushnells rejected several ideas for stand-in inns representing Charlotte Inn. “We were disappointed that we couldn’t use the real Charlotte inn, because nobody can duplicate that,” Squire told Vineyard Gazette. “But then, we couldn’t use the real Paula and Gery either, we had to have actors for them, so we had to have an actor for the Charlotte Inn.”
They finally chose a chateau near the city.
Other filming locations included the government wharf, the marina, and a house near the Langdale Ferry Terminal, Coast Reporter noted.
Kerry from I’ve Scene It on Hallmark also visited the set. She visited when they were filming at Krause Berry Farms. Krause Berry Farms is where they filmed the scenes with the carousel. This was also a filming location for The Sweetest Heart, Pumpkin Pie Wars, and other Hallmark films. She saw the crew rolling out fake snow blankets, setting up Christmas trees, and a carousel.
Here’s a post from Krause Berry Farms from during the filming:
You might notice, however, that some exterior shots are from New England. A film unit from Hallmark did go Martha’s Vineyard in December for some exterior shots.