Hallmark star Jen Lilley has signed a deal with GAC Family. The news was first reported by Deadline. The contract is for two years and extends to cover four new movies. But is the contract exclusive? Can she still make Hallmark movies? While her contract is not exclusive, Lilley indicated on social media that it might be some time before she makes another Hallmark movie.
Jen Lilley Is in a Non-Exclusive Contract with GAC
Lilley is in a non-exclusive contract and is still free to make other movies over the next two years. Heavy reached out to GAC Media, who confirmed that Lilley’s contract is not exclusive. (In contrast, Danica McKellar did sign an exclusive contract with GAC.)
Lilley’s deal with GAC Media covers four original movies in the next two years, Deadline reported. Her first movie with GAC Family, “Royally Wrapped for Christmas,” aired this last Christmas season, before she signed her new deal.
Bill Abbott, President and CEO of GAC Media and former CEO of the Hallmark Channel, told Deadline about the new deal: “Aside from being an immensely talented and hardworking actor, Jen is a generous and kindhearted person who is a perfect fit for GAC. Many of us on the GAC team have known Jen for years, and we are excited to welcome her to the family as we work together to bring even more entertaining movies to our fans.”
Lilley shared the news on her Instagram page, writing: “I’m so thankful for every opportunity I’ve had so far as an actress. I truly believe I have the kindest fans, many of you have become my friends, and I’m so excited to share this next chapter and what @gactv is building with you. Thank you @deadline for breaking the news ❤️ #2022, let’s go!”
Lilley Indicated on Instagram That She Likely Won’t Be Making New Hallmark Movies During Her Contract
Although Lilley’s contract is not exclusive, her answer in response to a question on social media seemed to indicate that she likely won’t be making new Hallmark movies during her contract.
When one fan asked, “are you still going to be filming for Hallmark? I am so confused…. love all your movies,” Lilley replied: “I’ll be on @gactv channel for the next 2 years.”
So although her contract isn’t exclusive, it does appear based on her reply that she won’t be making new Hallmark movies over the next two years. Of course, that could change.
When other people left messages asking about not being able to see her on Hallmark anymore or not being able to get GAC, she didn’t mention still making movies with Hallmark too. But she did suggest that fans might consider getting the Frndly TV app, which streams GAC Family movies at a low cost.
Lilley has a lot on her plate right now, in addition to making two movies a year with GAC Family. In October, she announced that she’s pregnant and expecting a baby in May 2022.
In an interview with People, Lilley said that she and husband Jason Wayne’s new baby was a surprise. They adopted half-brothers Kayden, 5, and Jeffrey, 3, from foster care. They also have a daughter, Julie, who was born in 2019. She said they’re very excited about the new addition to their family, whom they later revealed to be a girl.
Fans & Colleagues Are Congratulating Lilley on the News
Friends, colleagues, and fans are congratulating Lilley on her contract.
Cameron Mathison replied to Lilley with a series of clapping hands emojis.
Cindy Busby wrote, “Yahoo!!!!! 👏👏 congratulations!!! 🎉🎉🎉”
Neal Bledsoe wrote: “Wahoo! Way to go, Jen!”
Christopher Russell also shared a congratulatory message.
Danica McKellar wrote in an Instagram Story, “So excited for you @jen_lilley!”
McKellar previously told Heavy why she signed an exclusive deal with GAC Family. McKellar told Heavy that while working on “The Winter Palace,” she had a more collaborative experience than she’s ever had with a film before, and she felt a lot of freedom to talk with the director about changes she and the other actors might want.
“That’s something I found doing GAC movies… Even on the movies that I executive produced before, it’s just a different feeling,” she said. “…There was this feeling of freedom, and they all said to me afterward, ‘Thank you for making it so collaborative.’ Well, thank GAC because that’s where I got my sense of freedom and collaboration from.”
She said this played a role in her decision.
“Bill Abbott is a friend, and he’s such a good person,” she said. “And I jumped at the opportunity to help him build this new network. … It’s a smaller network right now, and we’re building something together.”
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