The Hallmark Channel’s newest Countdown to Christmas movie, “Never Been Chris’d,” premieres on Saturday, November 4, at 8 p.m. Eastern/7 p.m. Central. The movie stars Janel Parrish, Pascal Lamothe-Kipnes, and Tyler Hynes. Read on to see behind-the-scenes stories from the movie and learn more about filming in Canada.
‘Never Been Chris’d’ Was Filmed in Manitoba, Canada Over the Summer
According to the ACTRA website, “Never Been Chris’d” was filmed in Manitoba, Canada. Filming began on May 12, 2023 and ended on June 3, 2023.
The Casting Workbook also sent a call out for roles for shooting locations in “Winnipeg and Area.” This implies the movie wasn’t filmed entirely in Winnipeg, but that the suburbs were also used for certain scenes.
Casting Workbook’s casting role of Liz, played by Lamothe-Kipnes, describes her like this: “Sharp, dry, and hilarious, LIZ WAITT seems to be always focusing on the past. The ‘brains”‘ behind the operation, Liz is a strong leader who keeps cool in tough situations. That is, unless she’s talking, or arguing, with her mother!”
(Note: These role descriptions have minor spoilers. Casting Workbook’s post itself may have major spoilers, so take caution if clicking on any links.)
Naomi, played by Parrish, is described as “Sweet, charming and effortlessly likable, NAOMI GALINDO was never popular, but it didn’t matter because she had her best friend Liz at her side. The ‘heart’ of the duo, Naomi is an hopeless romantic and not the best at setting boundaries. When her father died 17 years ago, she did everything she could to make her mother happy.”
And we’ve got Hynes who plays Chris. His role description reads: “The leader of the pack, CHRIS SILVER was the IT guy in high school. Kind and energetic, everyone knew who Chris Silver was. Every girl he dated was immediately elevated in popularity, and those he didn’t date (called the ‘never been Chris’d’), pined for him. Now, Chris is a staunch VEGAN and head of the English Department at the High School.”
All Casting was also looking for couples for the movie. The description was “must have your own transportation to and from Selkirk MB – must be available for a full 11-12hrs day, working past midnight. – can be actual couples or good friends acting like a couple”
Selkirk is a 40-minute ride north of Winnipeg.
On X (formerly known as Twitter), the account @PinkSunsetxo on X uncovered news about the movie right after they finished filming in June.
Meet the Cast
Hallmark’s synopsis reads:
Lifelong besties Liz and Naomi have been through everything together. From gap toothed toddlers to unpopular high schoolers, they’ve seen each other through the best and worst times in each others lives. After moving to California from the small town of Westin, they developed ‘BESTIES,’ an app that helps people find a new best friend! But this holiday season, a visit back home forces Naomi and Liz’s friendship to the limit when they’re reconnected with their high school crush, Chris Silver! Facing family struggles, long kept secrets, and some deep soul searching, Liz and Naomi will be forced to reconcile their past, so they can look forward to the future.
Tyler Hynes is a Canadian actor, director, and writer who plays Chris in the movie, according to his bio. Hynes has appeared in numerous Hallmark Channel movies, and his fan group has lovingly called themselves the “Hynies” in his honor. His credits include works like “It Was Always You,” “The Mistletoe Promise,” “A Taste of Summer,” “A Picture of Her,” “Three Wise Men and a Baby,” “Always Amore,” and “Time for Hime to Come Home for Christmas.” He also made other notable appearances including on “UnREAL,” the feature film “Peace,” as a series regular on “Saving Hope,” and on “Letterkenny.”
Recently, Hynes unveiled a sci-fi project for his fans that was so popular, the server hosting the movie crashed.
Hawaii-born actress and producer Janel Parrish is Naomi. According to her bio, she began her career starring as Little Cosette in a production of Les Miserables at the age of six. She portrayed Mona in the series “Pretty Little Liars” and later starred in its spin-off, “The Perfectionists.” She also portrayed Margot Covey in all three installments of the Netflix franchise “To All the Boys I’ve Loved Before.” Recently, she took on a recurring role in “Magnum P.I.” for CBS and participated in the filming of the holiday comedy “The Fight Before Christmas” for Lionsgate. Her upcoming projects include an appearance in the Paramount film “Run & Gun.” In her previous collaborations with Hallmark, Parrish shone in the film “Family History Mysteries: Buried Past” and “Coyote Creek Christmas.”
Pascal Lamothe-Kipnes stars as Liz. According to her bio, she first discovered her passion for performing while participating in a high school musical. She pursued her education at the University of Victoria, earning a BFA in acting. After a short period in Toronto, Lamothe-Kipnes returned to British Columbia to launch her career in Vancouver, often referred to as Hollywood North.
In Vancouver, she secured roles on popular shows like CW’s “Charmed” and “DC’s Legends of Tomorrow.” Additionally, she lent her voice to the score of VC Andrews’ “Dawn” series on Lifetime. Lamothe-Kipnes also played a lead role in the feature-length film “Heart of Gold,” which earned her a nomination for a Leo Award.
Also starring in the movie, according to Hallmark’s press release, are:
- Linda Ko (Linda)
- Samantha Kendrick (Karly)
- Henriette Ivanans (Mimi)
- Uchenna Nkwonta (Mindy)
- Quinn Greene (Ryan)
- Madison MacIsaac (Jojo)
- Alex Poch-Goldin (Travis)
- Solange Sookram (Venture Capitalist)
- Tyrell Witherspoon (Marty)
If you miss the premiere, you can catch the movie again on these dates:
- Sunday, November 5: 6/5c
- Thursday, November 9: 8/7c
- Saturday, November 18: 2/1c
- Friday, November 24: 8a/7c