Mario Lopez is celebrating Christmas by playing a sexy Colonel Sanders in a new Lifetime mini-movie. He’s appeared in quite a few Lifetime movies lately and has also made some Hallmark appearances too. But this Colonel Sanders role is particularly unique and has gotten him quite a bit of attention online.
Lopez is perhaps best-known for his role on Saved by the Bell. However, he’s also appeared on The Hallmark Channel quite a few times, including on episodes of Home & Family (such as when he shared his family night dinner combo) and when he was a celebrity guest on Hallmark’s Paw Star Game. So just what is the story behind his Colonel Sanders role?
‘Recipe for Seduction’ Is a Mini-Movie & KFC’s 3rd Attempt at a ‘Romantic’ Colonel Sanders
The movie is called A Recipe for Seduction and the synopsis reads: “As the holidays draw near, a young heiress contends with the affections of a suitor handpicked by her mother. When the handsome chef, Harland Sanders, arrives with his secret fried chicken recipe and a dream, he sets in motion a series of events that unravels the mother’s devious plans.”
The trailer for the movie dropped on Monday, with the movie premiering on Sunday, December 13 at 12 p.m. Eastern (11 a.m. Central) and 12 p.m. Pacific. The movie is only going to be 15 minutes long.
The movie is billed as a Lifetime Original Mini-Movie. In the trailer, the main character Jessica says that she thinks she’s falling for the new chef, Harland Sanders.
“He has a secret recipe that’s gonna change the world,” she says.
She’s an heiress choosing between Sanders and a rich suitor.
Mark your calendars because Lifetime and @KFC have partnered for a Lifetime Original Mini-Movie you don't want to miss! "A Recipe For Seduction" starring @MarioLopezviva premieres Sunday at 12PM. pic.twitter.com/nZJ2PXUR6G
— Lifetime (@lifetimetv) December 7, 2020
This is KFC’s third attempt at marketing a “sexier” Colonel Sanders, The Washington Post reported. There’s the I Love You, Colonel Sanders! video game where players can try to woo Sanders based on different dialogue choices. You can still access the game here.
And in 2017, KFC published a Tender Wings of Desire novella for Mother’s Day.
The plot was a fictional affair between Colonel Harland Sanders and Lady Madeline Parker.
The Movie Isn’t Based on a True Story, But in Real Life Sanders Did Leave His Wife for a Woman He Hired to Help Her
In case you’re wondering, yes, Colonel Sanders’ full name is Colonel Harland David Sanders. But this movie isn’t based on a true story or anything like that. However, there are some interestingly distant parallels. He hired Claudia Price to help his first wife, Josephine, with housework and they eventually had an affair. He went on to marry Claudia in 1949, Buzzfeed News reported.
In real life, Colonel Sanders had worked as a steam engine stocker, filling station operator, and insurance salesman before starting his first fried chicken restaurant in Kentucky. He falsified his birth date to join the Army in 1906 and was honorably discharged in 1907. He even practiced law for a time.
He opened his first franchise restaurant in 1952 in Utah. In 1964, at the age of 73, he sold KFC to a partnership but kept the Canadian stores and some franchising rights in some other states. But over time, he became critical of the changes made to his recipes in order to cut costs.
He told Louisville Courier-Journal in the 1970s: “My God, that gravy is horrible. They buy tap water for 15 to 20 cents a thousand gallons and then they mix it with flour and starch and end up with pure wallpaper paste. And I know wallpaper paste, by God, because I’ve seen my mother make it. To the `wallpaper paste’ they add some `sludge and sell it for 65 or 75 cents a pint. There’s no nutrition in it and they ought not to be allowed to sell it.’ “And another thing. That new `crispy recipe is nothing in the world but a damn fried doughball stuck on some chicken.”
One company executive told the New Yorker about the original gravy recipe: “Let’s face it, the Colonel’s gravy was fantastic, but you had to be a Rhodes Scholar to cook it. It involved too much time, it left too much room for human error, and it was too expensive.”
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