Sarah Drew Says Her New Christmas Movie Is ‘Steamy’ & ‘Sexy’

Sarah Drew

Heavy/Getty Actress and screenwriter Sarah Drew

Actress and screenwriter Sarah Drew, who last appeared on Hallmark in the October 2023 movie “Guiding Emily,” is excited to break the mold this holiday season.

The “Grey’s Anatomy” alum has appeared in quite a few made-for-TV Christmas movies, from Hallmark’s “Christmas in Vienna” to Lifetime’s “Reindeer Games Homecoming.” But she has often wished the family dynamics and chemistry between couples in such movies could be a bit more realistic, she said on the November 27 episode of the “Whine Down” podcast hosted by actress Jana Kramer.

So, Drew, 43, took matters into her own hands and wrote a new holiday flick, “A Cowboy Christmas Romance,” that includes “steamy, sexy” love scenes. Rather than just feature typical lighthearted tension between the lead couple and a sweet kiss at the end, the new movie has Kramer and Adam Senn literally rolling in the hay.

When “A Cowboy Christmas Romance” premieres on December 9, it will mark the first time one of Lifetime’s holiday movies, which have long followed the Hallmark model of strictly G-rated romance, will include a “sex scene,” according to Us Weekly. Both Drew and Kramer hope it inspires more realistic storytelling in other TV rom-coms in the near future.

Here’s what you need to know:

Sarah Drew Explains Why She Wrote Specific, Steamy Love Scenes Into Movie Script

"A Cowboy Christmas Romance"

Lifetime“A Cowboy Christmas Romance” starring Adam Senn and Jana Kramer

In an Instagram post celebrating the upcoming premiere of “A Cowboy Christmas Romance,” Drew wrote, “Buckle up for a steamy, sexy Christmas flick written and executive produced by yours truly. Do you like Yellowstone? Sexy Cowboys? Family drama? Christmas? Do you like to cry and gush? Then you’ll love #acowboychristmasromance”

Over 20,000 fans liked Drew’s post and many commented about how excited they are to see a little sexual chemistry in a made-for-TV Christmas movie.

One person wrote, “FINALLY. We all love Christmas feels, but relationships include sex too!”

According to Lifetime’s synopsis, the story takes place one week before Christmas, when “a huge business deal sends real estate ‘closer’ Lexie Crenshaw (Jana Kramer) back to a place she swore she’d never return to: her hometown of Tubac, Arizona. Back on the range, Lexie must convince Coby Mason (Adam Senn), a horse-whispering rancher, to part ways with his family’s land, while navigating her relationship with her father (Bruce Thomas) and brothers she left behind, leading her to reconsider the life she gave up 10 years ago.”

On Kramer’s podcast discussion with Drew, they teased two of the steamier scenes.

“Spoiler alert,” Kramer said. “He lays me down on some hay, and then we, you know … Obviously, it’s still Lifetime, it’s still family. But it was pushing limits there, too.”

Drew replied, ““It all came out so beautifully, but especially the scene in the kitchen. I had written into the stage directions, ‘He pulls her up onto the counter, he shoves things off the table. I put it all in there, so I was like, ‘Don’t take the steam and the sex away from me. I wrote it on purpose, I want it in there.'”

Kramer confirmed Lifetime “didn’t cut anything” and added, “I was so happy that they really left it all in there.”

Tia Maggini, SVP of scripted content at Lifetime, told Variety, “We think that there’s an audience out there that’s hungry for grown-up romance, and we’re looking forward to adding some smolder to the usual holiday sugar and spice. We love trying new things, and we’re excited about this new ‘first’ for us for a holiday movie.”

Jana Kramer & Sarah Drew Say Steamy Scenes Aren’t the Only Thing That Sets New Christmas Movie Apart From the Rest

"Christmas in Vienna"

HallmarkHallmark’s “Christmas in Vienna” starring Brennan Elliott and Sarah Drew

Kramer, who starred with Kevin McGarry in Hallmark’s 2017 romcom “Love at First Bark,” has appeared in eight Lifetime movies, per Variety. She said on her podcast that she was hesitant to do yet another Christmas-themed TV movie, known for their squeaky-clean romances and an abundance of festive tropes, but she found Drew’s script refreshing.

She said, “I’m like, ‘Okay, this is gonna be the same thing (as the others).’ And I’m reading it and I’m going, ‘This is nothing like any Christmas (movie).’ I’m like, ‘We barely mention the word Christmas. There’s no gingerbread bake-off, there’s no festival, that town that’s going to hell and you gotta save it.”

Kramer said she immediately called her agent and gushed about how good the script was. In addition to pushing the envelope romantically, she said she was surprised the storyline also made her cry. Drew was thrilled to hear that, explaining that she intentionally wrote the script to be more “real,” from the romance to the family dynamics.

“I’ve done a lot of these Christmas movies, too, and they’re so sweet and fun,” Drew explained. “But in real, true holidays times for real, true family dynamics, it’s always stressful and heightened. There’s drama that comes out and we never explore that stuff in the Christmas movies. It’s always just about the cozy feelings. Those cozy feelings happen (in this movie), but it’s all mixed up with real family stuff and identity stuff and relationship stuff.”