What's better than two Tyler Hynes Christmas movies in one year? Holland Roden joining him for Time for HIm to Come Home for Christmas!
Holland and Tyler star in the moving and emotionally rewarding film, the latest in a series of Christmas movies from Blake Shelton, based upon his song, Time for Me to Come Home.
This film begins four days before Christmas when Elizabeth [Holland] receives a voicemail from a number she doesn't recognize. On the message, a man she doesn't know makes one final plea to the love of his life.
The film takes viewers on an emotional journey as Elizabeth and her dear, estranged friend, Josh (Hynes), try to connect the pieces of her mysterious voicemail to make someone's Christmas wish come true.
In the process, Elizabeth and Josh will overcome a painful past, and four lost souls will have a chance at happiness.
I had the pleasure of chatting with Holland and Josh, and, as usual, we had an absolutely delightful conversation. I hope you enjoy what they had to say about the movie, celebrating the holidays, and their treasured fans.
Tyler: Hey, Holland. How are you doing?
Holland: Hi, honey. I'm good. How are you?
Tyler: Long time.
Holland: I know.
Tyler: How's life? Are you excited for your movie?
Holland: Yes, I'm okay. Yeah, it's going to be fun. Our movie is this weekend, right?
Tyler: Yes, ma'am. Have you seen it yet?
Holland: No, I haven't seen it.
Carissa: Have you seen it, Tyler?
Tyler: I have, yeah. You're going to love it.
Carissa: I love it.
Tyler: Did you like it, Carissa?
Carissa: I did. I liked it a lot.
Tyler: Did you cry?
Carissa: I didn't cry, but I did have that gulp-y thing going on, where your throat's just a little... I'm a little overcome. It's a really good movie, you guys.
Tyler: Oh, I'm glad you liked it. Yeah, it's nice. Holland did an absolutely spectacular job, as we would all expect.
Carissa: Holland, Isn't this your first Hallmark movie?
Holland: It is. It is my first Hallmark.
Carissa: How lucky for you. You had a great movie, Blake Shelton producing, and Tyler is your co-star.
Holland: I got very lucky. I was just saying that. I'm doing this limited series right now for them, and I kept referencing it back in August, so I was like, "Guys, yeah."
And I had quite the very lucky welcome wagon of everybody, Aurelie and Tyler and David, and they take really good care of you. It was just a lovely experience. Cassandra and Tara in makeup and hair. It was a really just friendly group.
Tyler: Holland, you did such a spectacular job. I hope you're happy with your performance; I know this was your first time doing it. There was a whole lot of chaos happening, but I think that you're going to be pleasantly surprised with how it turns out, I hope. And yeah, I think everybody's excited for it.
Holland: I got to see one sneak peek. I saw David at the Calgary airport, of all places, in passing, and he was going to do another movie, and he emailed me a sneak peek because we ran into each other, so it was the one in the gift shop.
Carissa: Tyler, what's it like to welcome somebody new to the Hallmark family?
Tyler: I don't know that I have any authority to be welcoming anybody.
Carissa: Well, sure you do; you're an old hat.
Tyler: Funny because it seems like yesterday that I was not, and I was having the same conversations on the other side, but I guess it's been four years now and 14 movies or whatever it's been. I know, crazy.
Holland, if this is a life you would like to be a part of, I can imagine that this will be in your future if this is what you want, but it is.
Holland: It's been lovely, yeah.
Tyler: Yeah, it's a lovely place. And to be able to work with someone like Holland who is newer to this place, it's honestly, again, these movies are a specific thing, and somebody who comes in that has the talent and aptitude and focus and thoughtfulness that Holland has, it's a pleasure.
And I don't do any kind of welcoming; I just try to be supportive however I can because it's certainly not my movie. It's her movie.
Holland: No, it was an ensemble. We had such a great cast. Everybody in Tyler's onscreen family was awesome. Oh, such a talent. And our moms, it was just a really fun group. Christmas movies are a thing, man. I mean, if you look at so many other networks now emulating the Hallmark structure, so to speak.
Carissa: Trying anyway.
Holland: Oh, they're trying, exactly.
Carissa: They're not as successful.
Holland: I noticed there was a new Tom Hanks Christmas movie out, or Tom Hanks and somebody else. But yeah, I think it's fun that everyone's just in a happy place or wants to be back in a happy place. I think after COVID, these movies are needed more than ever.
Carissa: And Tyler, this is your second Hallmark movie in two weeks. What do you like about doing these movies?
Tyler: Correct. Well, I love working with people like Holland, who are lovely individuals who are talented and have their own unique approach. And that's always fun. I like the fact that these are movies.
It almost feels like the old movie model has disappeared. And so this is some microcosm of that where every movie, the chance to do something different, to reinvent yourself a little bit and try to take a new approach.
And I think it affords a certain amount of experimentation for me, personally, as an actor and a certain amount of creativity that I don't think is afforded if you're going to be on a series regularly or spend a year making a movie and then having it come out two years later.
There's a rhythm to this world that feels a little bit like old Hollywood, where you're making a few of them a year coming out, they have an audience, and people appreciate them, which is very nice.
And then, every time you go back to the drawing board, you get to reassess and go, "What do I want to do here? What's going to entertain me or do something that I think is worthwhile doing?" And I think that that's a very fun thing. And obviously, the people who watch these movies are the greatest human beings on the planet.
Carissa: They really are.
Tyler: Yeah, it's absolutely silly. I have other friends who have people who follow them and such and hearing the type of comments or interactions that they have, it's just wildly different than mine. And I can only speak from my own experience.
And I did a Facebook Live yesterday with a Facebook group that are people that watch my movies, and it's hard not to get absolutely emotionally touched by everything in this vicinity. So for all those reasons is why I'm still here and happy to be here and grateful.
Carissa: Your two movies couldn't have been more different characters. I mean, you were hilarious, and I hadn't seen Three Wise Men and a Baby when I talked to you, but my goodness. I mean, really funny stuff.
And you were completely different than anything else you've been in. And then you got to do this, which is far more dramatic and a touch of romance, and yeah, I can see why it would be very, very fulfilling to get these opportunities in such short order and not have to wait a while for when it comes out.
Tyler: Yeah, absolutely. And being able to hear your reaction to it and people's reaction to it this quickly after making it is... Because I remember everything that I did. I remember every choice that I made. And then seeing the direct response to that is, I think people chase in theater, in live theater, and somehow we're in this.
I love the discipline of filmmaking, but I started in theater when I was young, and I did love the immediacy of that interaction and that reaction. And so I think, somehow, I'm managing to find myself in the circumstance where I'm getting kind of the best of both worlds.
And exactly what you're saying, these movies are very different, and therefore the characters can be different. I get to approach it with that kind of thoughtfulness where I can push the characters farther one way and the other in context to the other characters, which is fun. This one is going to be different than certainly Three Wise Men and a Baby.
Carissa: Sure, much different.
Holland: It's a great analogy. The immediacy is that you, like Tyler was saying, definitely feel like you made those choices yesterday, and they're much more on the forefront of your brain of remembering each take and the take they chose for that scene. So it's really nice. It is definitely the theater for TV as far as the turnaround that they're able to get these out.
Tyler: I'm excited for you, Holland, to experience that. Because, again, I know how thoughtful and disciplined you are and how charismatic and how easily you handle this world, but I know that you care about what you do, and I know that you care about these performances. So being able to have an immediate reaction, I can't wait for you to experience that.
Holland: Oh, absolutely. I come from a world with a very loyal fan base from a show I was on for a long time, so they seem very similar. And I'm sure there are concentric circles even in people that watch Hallmark and people that watch Teen Wolf.
Tyler: Yeah? You think?
Holland: There could be. I'll be curious to see because seeing Tyler's relationship with the people that watch his movies felt really heartwarming but very similar. And so I'm very curious to see. Teen Wolf is not normal in the relationship that we have with them and how often we get to see them at signings, and that's very similar to Hallmark.
So I'm excited to be hopefully welcomed into another family and just feel that warmth because there's not, all shows do have that warmth, and not all networks have that warmth, so it's a rarity to experience it once, let alone twice. So I'm just nervous and excited to see how that reception will go. But it should be fun.
Carissa: And don't be nervous. Don't be nervous at all. What I love about having someone like you come in with an already-established fan base is even if they weren't fans of Hallmark movies before, you're going to be bringing a new audience to Hallmark.
Carissa: And then, oh, they'll come. They will. If you're in something, that's what they do, they follow you, and they want to watch you.
Holland: Oh, well, I can't imagine some of the themes that are in that show definitely are in this movie as well.
Holland: So yeah, I'm curious to see who are already fans of Hallmark because the amount of people that watch these Christmas movies is pretty astonishing. And I guess I'm not surprised because they are such great feel-good movies.
I'm curious to see, I bet you there are already Hallmark fans in the Teen Wolf family, so I'm just excited to, like I said, to meet them and see how they like our film.
Carissa: So would each of you go ahead and just tell me a little bit about your characters and where we find them at the start of the movie and a little bit about their journey, without spoiling too much, and what you really enjoyed about playing this particular character? Do you want to start, Holland?
Holland: Sure. I play a girl that is the daughter of a cosmetic empire, and without giving too much away, I am ushered into this sort of pre-made career if I so want it. However, I would like to take a different direction in a different industry.
And simultaneously, we have a group of friends that are meeting up for the holidays, and there is a time cut throughout this movie. And it's a matter of circumstances that happen in one timeframe and how it affects the other timeframe. And a bit of a scavenger hunt is all lumped into this movie, so there are several storylines going on.
I would almost say there are four storylines versus maybe three if you're lucky. And this one, I feel like, almost has four. And so how it's all weaved in and out of each other is really a testament to Marcy Holland.
Carissa: How about you, Tyler?
Tyler: So my guy, Josh, is a writer. Both Holland's character and my character. We're writers, and they're sort of on their way to becoming journalists in a bigger way in their careers when something occurs in both their lives that ends up setting them in different directions with all kinds of water under the bridge and things on unsaid that we learn about in our story.
I think what's nice about this movie is that our characters are kind of set, and it's more about the circumstance that we're in, how it's affecting our characters in real-time through the story that we're being told that creates the arc of what that character's going through. It's not like he learns something about himself.
I mean, he does, but this is not the focus of the movie. It's about the circumstances that they're in and telling the two storylines that are happening concurrently, which makes this movie really, really beautiful, I think.
And how they reflect off each other, both storylines creating a bit of an interplay with each other is very fun. And I think my character has a purity in what he wants, but we see him make mistakes that get rectified in the movie.
Holland: It's quite the jigsaw puzzle. I think it's probably more of a jigsaw puzzle than Hallmark sees on a normal basis.
Tyler: Yes, this is this. Yeah, this was Marcy Holland, and I'm so glad that Holland brought her name up because she wrote a perfect script. It was one of the scripts that you read, and you just go, "This is perfect. I wouldn't change a thing."
And it was a beautiful, tightly-woven tapestry that she built that has just the right amount of information and just pulls you along page by page. And I think the movie did the same thing and captured a good tone to it that makes it feel joyful and bittersweet, somber but filled with love and warmth. And it's got a really interesting feeling to the movie.
There's a song that they put in it, I guess it's a Grammy-winning song called Peace Joy Love. And it's just this beautiful choir repeating this phrase over and over again. And it is incredibly emotional, and it's in the scene with you, Holland, when you're at the church, lighting a candle.
Holland: Oh, interesting. Okay.
Tyler: And this song, they sent it to me when I was working on the last movie I was doing on my way to work and just found myself listening to it on a repeat, blubbering.
Holland: Oh, it's lovely.
Tyler: It is this beautiful song. But I think that song really encapsulates the feeling of this movie.
Carissa: You're right about the feeling of this movie too. It really evokes a lot of emotion. And what I love about it is that a lot of times, Hallmark movies can be predictable.
Carissa: But here, you don't know where it's taking you.
Tyler: Oh good, yes.
Carissa: There's nothing predictable in the movie at all.
Tyler: Yeah. It's funny because it's like this emotional powder keg, but because it's wrapped in this sort of mystery, it's got a thriller-y, fun aspect where you want you just go along for the ride. So the emotion of it doesn't get too potent or powerful where it overwhelms you, but it's certainly there.
But the thrill of figuring out what happened or what these stories are and what's occurring as that mystery unravels it's a weird combination of fun, intrigue, and loss. Do you know what I mean? Or some grief. It's an interesting combination.
Holland: Yeah. It's worth noting that musical guest Tenille Townsend is in this movie, and she is beyond lovely, as well. She is probably the most, I mean, it's not even to say that she was a natural actor for a musician; she was just a good actor.
Tyler: She was so good. She was so good in the movie. I watched, and I was like, "What is going on?" And you felt that in person.
Holland: She was amazing. She was just lovely. I was like, "Girl, you got a career if you want one; I know you already are doing this thing pretty wholeheartedly." But she was really lovely, and her voice is incredible, very natural. Like the runs that she can do, acapella, but effortlessly, and she's very humble about it and just a lovely spirit to have on set.
I became a fan. I'm not even a traditional country person, although I'm from Texas, But she made a fan out of me, and I want to go see her in Nashville. Hopefully, people will see the nice big cherry on the sundae is having her a part of the film.
And congrats Tyler; I've been seeing all the coverage for Three Wise Men and a Baby. It looks so cute.
Tyler: Yeah, it was a good time. It was very nice. People seem to enjoy it. Carissa is a fan, so I've succeeded.
Carissa: Oh, it was just very funny.
Holland: Has Hallmark seen that dynamic before with Three Men and a Baby?
Holland: That's great. I love that. Sorely needed, so I'm glad you guys filled that position.
Carissa: I've been a proponent for years of trying to get many Hallmark actors into one production because there are so many opportunities for siblings, for friends, and it was always just male-female. And now that we're getting these three females, three males together, they're fantastic movies. It's really, really using the talent well.
Tyler: It's our own little HCU, Hallmark's cinematic universe.
Holland: I was going to call it the Justice League of Hallmark. Yeah, they all converge.
Tyler: That's right. There's somebody who made a poster of an Avengers poster with the three of our faces in there and the baby in the Baby Bjorn.
Holland: Ah, that's great.
Tyler: It's fantastic; I'm just a big fan of it.
Carissa: That's awesome. So what do you think that viewers are most going to like about this movie? What's going to appeal to them the most?
Holland: I think, as a viewer, I love a lot of twists and turns that keep me on my toes.
I think it's going to be subjective to each person watching, but for me, what entices me most about this film is the serendipitous connection, six degrees of separation type of movie, so that's what initially drew me to the script. It's just my bag of tea. Yeah, for me, that's what I would choose. But I think it's in the eye of the beholder. What about you, Tyler?
Tyler: Yeah, I think what you're saying is absolutely right. The mystery unfolding is going to be the tether that pulls everybody through it. And I think the fact that Blake Shelton is involved and he's managed to bring in someone like Tenille who is unbelievably talented, she gives an absolutely lovely performance at the end of our movie singing Christmas song.
I think they play the whole song in the end of the movie, and they just keep coming to me, and you canoodling in the audience, and it's quite lovely. But I think the fact that they get that whole performance from Tenille is going to be a nice thing.
And I think Holland's performance and the performance of our other cast in this movie, combined with the writing being so well thought out and precisely executed, I think that it'll make for a uniquely-toned Hallmark movie that'll have a lot of warmth and a lot of heart and a little bit of heartache, but also a lot of fun and some great music so it's a pretty complicated combination and I think people are going to enjoy it a bit.
Holland: Yeah, to echo that, I'm biased, but the music, with Blake Shelton being involved like Tyler said, is maybe a notch above the rest because it is musically centric, more so than other Christmas movies. So that's something that makes a viewer go, "Oh, that sets it apart from the rest," absolutely.
Carissa: And my final question for you is, what message do you want to share with your fans this holiday season?
Holland: This is sort of off-topic, but what comes to my mind is I had an idea for this Christmas, and I think this can be done on any economic level, but I think forgoing gifts and going somewhere with either your friends or your family, whoever you celebrate the holidays with, that could be even with just your dogs if you're solo.
But I like this idea that, for kids, might be a different story, but as all adult children going home to your parents or to your family unit, I would say trips. Either that's down the road, and you're camping, or that's getting on an airplane and going to somewhere you're not used to going, the climate that you're not used to being in.
I think foregoing the materialistic part of it and having more of a shared experience is something that I wish my family did more of. And I keep pushing it on the agenda. So I think a collective shared experience is one of the most powerful gifts you can give at Christmas.
So I would urge people to potentially think along the lines of that this holiday season. Obviously, the five-year-old, they're going to want the newest, latest, coolest doll or action figure. But for those a bit more mature, I would say try that on for size if you're looking for new ideas.
Carissa: How about you, Tyler?
Tyler: I think what Holland's saying is absolutely lovely, and I love that sentiment, and I wholeheartedly agree. I think there's a tradition that I sort of began with my family and friends where we take a tiny little shot out of a tiny little boot-shaped shot glass. It looks like a boot, a Santa boot.
Tyler: And so I give it to all of my friends and family, and we all take a photo of ourselves taking a shot out of it at Christmas, and we hang it on our tree as an ornament.
Holland: You told me about this.
Tyler: Yeah. So we started it; I'm going to have to send you a boot.
Tyler: This was something that I spoke about in a previous interview or two, and the folks who watched these movies in this specific Facebook group, they sort of joined in on this tradition last Christmas, and we did a live where we just all took a drink together, and people made collages, and they shared it with each other of everybody's screenshots at that moment.
I think it just made people, while being sort of splintered apart from COVID, feel like they were with other folks and, like you're saying, Holland, without too many material possessions being involved.
And I think that was a really lovely thing. And so then I've spent the last year making a material possession in the form of these boots. [laughs]
Holland: I might have to steal this idea as well; I love this idea.
Tyler: It's wild. Yeah, they're the most lovely human beings on the planet, and it was like my brother put up the website, and they're going, "We're trying to purchase it internationally, and we can't." I go, "Oh my goodness, bear with us." And then other people are chiming in, going, "We're going to buy it for you, and we'll send it to you because you're in Ireland."
Carissa: Oh, that's lovely.
Tyler: It is the most heart-smashing thing you could possibly experience. And so if there's any message to say to anybody, it would be that I very greatly much appreciate everybody's attitude and spirit when it comes to this world that we sort of play in the sandbox.
I'm incredibly grateful for everybody. Even folks like yourself, Carissa, you are so much a part of this whole experience for people who watch these movies, for myself who makes them. And I love this sort of ecosystem that we're in, and I'm just incredibly grateful and thankful for that. And I'm thankful for you and the conversations that we get to have.
The fact that there's any interest at all in the things that we are spending our time thinking about and doing, and I just want everybody to feel that love and appreciation because it's very, very much something that I think about often and daily. So thank you. I'll start by saying thank you, Carissa, here because you're right in front of me at the moment, so I really appreciate it.
Carissa: That, my friend, is why you're a star. That's why you're a star of Hallmark. That's it right there.
Tyler: You're very kind. I'm not the guy, I'm number two. You're wrong. Number two on the call sheet. Holland's the star, she's number one. I'm the other guy.
Holland: It's both of us.
Carissa: You're both stars. You're both stars in my book.
Time for Him to Come Home for Christmas premieres on Hallmark Movies & Mysteries on Saturday, November 26 at 10/9c.
Carissa Pavlica is the managing editor and a staff writer and critic for TV Fanatic. She's a member of the Critic's Choice Association, enjoys mentoring writers, conversing with cats, and passionately discussing the nuances of television and film with anyone who will listen. Follow her on Twitter and email her here at TV Fanatic.