The epicenter of Hallmark Media‘s filming operations has long been British Columbia, Canada. In fact, according to Vancouver Magazine, the network filmed a whopping 173 movies in Vancouver and surrounding areas from 2020 through 2022.
And while that hub continues to be abuzz with Hallmark productions and stars coming in and out — including talent like Alison Sweeney and Benjamin Ayres who’ve shared on Instagram that they’ve been filming there in recent weeks — the network has increasingly been sending its talent far and wide to film in picturesque spots around the world, from charming European cities to the Indian Ocean and even to South Africa, where longtime Hallmark actor Andrew Walker is spending much of May 2023.
Here’s a look at the distant places where Hallmark’s been filming lately.
Andrew Walker Goes on Safari in South Africa
After recently wrapping up filming a third “Curious Caterer” mystery in Vancouver with Nikki DeLoach, Walker jetted off to South Africa, where he’s been filming a new romance for Hallmark. He and his wife Cassandra Troy flew there together to celebrate her 40th birthday with a safari, which they both chronicled on Instagram. It wasn’t the couple’s first time there, though; in June 2019, they traveled to Cape Town to celebrate his 40th birthday, according to Yahoo.
Following their 2023 safari and sightseeing trip, Walker began filming a new movie with co-star Brittany Bristow, who last appeared on Hallmark in March’s “The Love Club: Nicole’s Pen Pal.” The two have shared glimpses in their Instagram Stories of their time in South Africa, from going out to dinner with her parents — film director Leif Bristow and screenwriter Agnes Bristow, both of whom are working on this movie — and working out in the hotel’s gym.
Now in their second week of filming, Walker shared a glimpse of their script, written by Bristow’s mom with the working title “Safari Romance,” in a video of the actress laughing as she revealed a sheet full of numbers she’d written down as she studied the script.
Walker wrote, “Running lines with my overachieving, high performance, perfectionist scene partner…” and tagged Bristow.
This is not the first time Hallmark or Bristow have filmed in South Africa. In 2018, she appeared with Lacey Chabert and Jon Cor in “Love On Safari,” shot in Johannesburg, but at the time such a faraway shoot was rare for the network. Bristow is very familiar with the region, having hosted a wildlife show for several years with National Geographic.
After filming with Hallmark there in 2018, she told the Media From the Heart blog, “The people of South Africa are…I mean…I think they might be the kindest people I’ve ever met on earth. It was such a beautiful experience. We had such an exceptional time. We got to see so many cool things. We saw elephants, lions, zebras, giraffes, and monkeys everywhere. We got to see these amazing choirs singing. We just had the most incredible time.”
Lacey Chabert & Other Hallmark Stars Have Been Filming Overseas, Too
In addition to the “Love On Safari” shoot, Chabert has had her fair share of overseas movie shoots with Hallmark, especially over the past few months. Though the initial “Wedding Veil” trilogy that premiered in early 2022 was filmed in British Columbia, the second trio of “Wedding Veil” movies co-starring Alison Sweeney and Autumn Reeser, which premiered in early 2023, were shot in on-location in Greece and Bulgaria late last year.
Chabert also spent much of March 2023 on the island of Malta filming “The Dancing Detective” with Will Kemp, which is set to premiere on June 2 on Hallmark Movies & Mysteries.
“With these movies, especially with the destination ones, I always want the audience to feel like the place that we are in is a character in the movie,” Chabert said on the You Are Beautiful podcast in April 2023. “I want them to feel like they packed their bags and came with us and they were on the journey.”
Hallmark has already filmed multiple other productions overseas this year, some of which have already premiered. In February, for instance, Alexa PenaVega starred in “A Paris Proposal,” shot in France and Bulgaria late last year — the first time she left her family at home during a shoot because of the distant locations, she told Media Village. In April, Heather Hemmens starred in “A Pinch of Portugal” and Jocelyn Hudon and Jake Manley appear in “Love in the Maldives,” shot in the island country located in the Indian Ocean.
Tamera Mowry-Housley spent April with her family in Ireland, rumored online to have been filming “Murder in G Major” while there and she shared on Instagram that she can’t wait to go back. Meanwhile, a Hallmark holiday movie with the working title “Notting Hill Christmas” was also filmed this spring in Ireland, per Ireland radio station 98FM. According to rom-com insider Ho! Ho! Holiday Viewing on Twitter, Hallmark also has plans to shoot a movie called “Scottish At Heart” next month in Scotland and Ireland.