It’s no secret Great American Family is looking to rival Hallmark Channel and other networks that offer family-friendly fare—especially when it comes to Christmas movies. Former Hallmark Media CEO Bill Abbott now heads up Great American Media after being ousted from his former network.
The startup launched last June after buying Great American Country and Ride TV. The two networks were rebranded as Great American Family and Great American Living, respectively. The late launch didn’t allow the network to properly promote its Christmas movies last year and many viewers didn’t even know the channel existed.
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This year, Abbott and Great American Media hope to change all that. The upstart network recently signed multi-year deals with popular talent pulling them away from Abbott’s former employer. The biggest blow to Hallmark Channel was Great American Media’s signing Candace Cameron Bure to a multi-level deal that not only includes developing, starring in and producing movies—holiday and year-round—for the network but also an executive role where Bure will help curate programming for the channel.
Great American Media has also signed non-exclusive, multi-year deals with Jen Lilley, Trevor Donovan and Jessica Lowndes. As the deals are non-exclusive, the actors are free to work on projects for other networks, but those projects will likely be limited due to their commitments to Great American Media.
Working from a proven formula Abbott used at Hallmark Channel, Great American Family will premiere new holiday films every weekend with 24/7 Christmas programming during their holiday events.
Related: Get Ready for an UPlifting Holiday Season With UPtv’s 2022 Christmas Lineup of All-New Movies
With other networks like Lifetime and UPtv carrying their own original holiday movie slates, Great American Family hopes to bring their dancing shoes to the jingle bell ball of networks airing Christmas fare and while they won’t be able to rival Hallmark Media’s number of original films just yet, they will have 18 new premieres this season during their Great American Christmas event.
Related: 40 New Holiday Movies! Hallmark Channel’s Complete Countdown to Christmas Schedule is Here!
“We’re certainly selling family-friendly content and quality original movies with talent that people love and resonate with viewers,” Abbott said. “We’ve had a lot more time to prepare and market and do all the things necessary to drive a much bigger audience. We feel really good about where we will be in the fourth quarter.”
Related: The Complete List of Hallmark Channel Stars Who’ve Moved to Great American Family, Including Candace Cameron Bure!
Even after the Christmas holidays, Great American Family plans to rechristen Hallmark Channel’s Kitten Bowl. After Hallmark canceled the show, Great American Family quickly scooped up the event and plans to relaunch it on their network on Super Bowl Sunday as The Great American Rescue Bowl. The show, which will be hosted by Kitten Bowl‘s Beth Stern and will not only feature shelter animals of the feline kind but also dogs and other rescues.
Related: Great American Family Saves the Kitten Bowl! Watch for Cute Kittens (and Canine Companions) on a New Network
When does the Great American Christmas event begin?
Great American Family Christmas begins on Friday, Oct. 21 and will feature new original holiday movies and specials every weekend through the end of the year.
How can I watch Great American Family?
Great American Family is a cable network which is available on many popular cable and satellite providers. You can also stream the network with subscriptions on sites like Frndly or Philo.
Great American Family Christmas Schedule 2022
Destined at Christmas
Premiered Saturday, October 22 at 8 p.m. ET
Starring Shae Robins and Casey Elliott
Kim (Robins) and Theo (Eliott) meet amid Black Friday shopping madness but there’s a definite spark between them. When a power outage causes some panic at a store, the couple gets separated. With Christmas coming, there should be plenty of distractions, but neither Kim nor Theo can forget the other. Both yearn to find each other but how with so little information to go on? It’ll take a little Christmas magic and destiny to bring them back together.
Premiering Saturday, October 29 at 8 p.m. ET
Starring Merritt Patterson and Daniel Lissing
A fledgling caterer, Molly Frost (Patterson), is hired by Jean Harrison, the director of the renowned Harrison Foundation, to cater this year’s annual Christmas Gala dinner. Things get complicated when Molly falls for Jean’s nephew, Carson (Lissing), a photographer with no desire to take over the family’s foundation — until his aunt assigns him to the task of making sure the catered dinner goes perfectly.
A Royal Christmas on Ice
Premiering Saturday, November 5 at 8 p.m. ET
Starring Anna Marie Dobbins and Jonathan Stoddard
Looking to escape his Royal life, a dashing prince comes to the United States to start a business in a small town in upstate New York and winds up falling for a former Olympic ice skater.
Love At the Christmas Contest
Premiering Sunday, November 6
Starring Samantha Cope and Ross Jirgl
For as long as she can remember, Angie’s (Cope) favorite part of Christmas has been the Christmas Eve tree lighting in town square. But this Christmas, her first without her mom, Angie doesn’t feel much like celebrating… until she learns her mom had always dreamed of winning the annual tree decorating contest and seeing her tree lit up in town square. Angie realizes winning the contest and decorating the town’s tree is the perfect way to honor her mom. What Angie isn’t expecting is her high school sweetheart David (Jirgl) and his adorable daughter to enter the contest, too.
A Merry Christmas Wish
Premiering Saturday, November 12 at 8 p.m. ET
Starring Jill Wagner and Cameron Mathison
An NYC advertising executive returns to her hometown to sell the family farm, but instead reconnects with her childhood friend and gets involved with organizing the yearly Winter Wonderland, which takes place on the property.
My Best Friend’s Christmas
Premiering Sunday, November 13 at 8 p.m. ET
Starring Breanne Hill and Colton Little
When a woman returns home to find her ex in a relationship, she enlists her best friend to act as her fake boyfriend for the holidays.
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Christmas At Pine Valley
Premiering Saturday, November 19 at 8 p.m. ET
Starring Kristina Cole and Andrew Biernat
Natalie (Cole) is the owner of a successful farm and home goods store that garners the attention of a major magazine. The magazine sends Josh (Biernat), a reporter, to profile Natalie’s company thinking it’s a family-run business. Little does he know that Natalie’s business is run by her with the help of longtime family friends. Knowing how much the article will help struggling farm, Natalie must convince Josh that her “family” and Christmas traditions are all real.
My Favorite Christmas Tree
Premiering Sunday, November 20 at 8 p.m. ET
Starring Emma Johnson and Giles Panton
Kyla (Johnson) is a skilled genealogy researcher who’s made a thriving business of putting together family trees. When she comes across new information regarding her mother’s mysterious extended family, Kyla and her sister travel to the charming town of Conifer, hoping to piece together their ancestry. The search leads Kyla to a generations-old Christmas tree farm, its stubborn, handsome owner – and potentially, love.
Christmas at the Drive-In
Premiering Friday, November 25 at 8 p.m. ET
Starring Danica McKellar and Neal Bledsoe
A property lawyer works to prove that her town’s Drive In Theater, a local institution is not closed down at the holidays, finding romance with the very person who is trying to sell the property.
I’m Glad It’s Christmas
Premiering Saturday, November 26 at 8 p.m. ET
Starring Jessica Lowndes, Paul Greene and Gladys Knight
An aspiring Broadway singer is convinced to participate in a small-scale production for her local Christmas celebration. Along the way, she finds hope and unexpected mentorship towards her dream career. But will her professional success come at the cost of her chance at love?
Candace Cameron Bure Presents: A Christmas…Present
Premiering Sunday, November 27 at 8 p.m. ET
Starring Candace Cameron Bure and Marc Blucas
Maggie (Bure) and Eric (Blucas) are busy parents of teenagers who embark on a trip to the home of Maggie’s widowed brother to celebrate Christmas. Everyone has different expectations of the perfect holiday. Through a series of transformative events, Maggie learns to embrace the season.
Related: Candace Cameron Bure’s Best Hallmark Christmas Movies
Christmas on Candy Cane Lane
Premiering Saturday, December 3 at 8 p.m. ET
Starring Andrea Barber and Dan Payne
Ivy (Barber) struggles with the long shadow cast by her late mother, head of the Candy Cane Lane Lights Extravaganza, owner of The Christmas Haus, and a former TV star known adoringly as the “Christmas Maven.” This Christmas, a series of comical and mysterious events bring the town together in a masterstroke of perfection only the “Christmas Maven” herself could appreciate.
Premiering Sunday, December 4 at 8 p.m. ET
Starring Jen Lilley and Jesse Hutch:
Renowned luxury travel blogger Tracey Moore (Lilley) is invited to a Christmastime getaway in exchange for a review of a small town B&B. Despite her initial reservations, she finds herself wanting to help the property… and falling for the owner’s handsome son, Graham (Hutch), who helps her to learn that every experience can be five-star when shared with kindred spirits.
Big Box Christmas
Premiering Friday, December 9 at 8 p.m. ET
Starring Jennifer Freeman and Garrett Watson
Two exes finally reconnect when a snowstorm leaves them stranded in a superstore (without cell service or Wi-Fi) just before Christmas.
A Prince for the Holidays
Premiering Saturday, December 10 at 8 p.m. ET
Starring Cindy Busby and Jilon VanOver
Madison (Busby), an aspiring musician, jokingly tells her overbearing family that she is dating the prince of a small European nation. The joke goes too far as her friend and co-worker Sebastian (VanOver) is roped into impersonating the prince while visiting her family in New Jersey. Little does Madison know that Sebastian happens to be hiding a royal secret.
A Belgian Chocolate Christmas
Premiering Sunday, December 11 at 8 p.m. ET
Starring Jaclyn Hales and Zane Stephens
A photographer takes her best friend’s place at a Belgian culinary school at the holidays and connects with the chocolatier leading the class. As romance begins to bloom, the only problem is a case of mistaken identity.
A Brush with Christmas Romance
Premiering Saturday, December 17 at 8 p.m. ET
Starring Jillian Murray and Joseph Cannata
Over the week leading up to Christmas, Charlotte (Murray) tries to capture her own unique style in the local art scene while also helping her mother run the family restaurant. Disheartened and struggling to find time for her art, Charlotte throws out her latest painting, only to discover that it has been anonymously submitted to the Christmas art festival. It turns out that Wyatt (Cannata), a visiting artist, stumbled upon her discarded work and is now using the festival’s exposure to find its mysterious creator who has stolen his heart with her craft.
The Art of Christmas
Premiering Sunday, December 18 at 8 p.m. ET
Starring Brigitte Kingsley and Joe Towne
After her latest gallery exhibition literally goes up in flames, struggling artist Liv James (Kingsley) accepts a teaching job at a local elementary school to make ends meet. Through this reluctant career move she discovers her true self, a new sense of purpose and a surprising romance.
Related: The Complete List of Hallmark Channel Stars Who Are Not Leaving the Network