Why Hallmark's Take Me Back For Christmas Was A 'Unique' Experience For Corey Sevier

Corey Sevier started his acting journey when he was a child, scoring a part in the ABC mini-series "Family Pictures" and later taking on prominent roles in '90s classics like "Lassie" and "Little Men." Fans likely recognize him most for his Hallmark appearances, though, which include the beloved "Cedar Cove" series, "Northern Lights of Christmas," and more.

From the array of projects Sevier has worked on throughout his career, Hallmark's "Take Me Back for Christmas" holds a special significance for the star due to the genuinely familial atmosphere on set. "My experience prepping this one was a little unique, as I was directing the film and my wife, [Kate Pragnell], wrote the script," he explained in an interview with The Harlton Empire.

Scheduled as part of Hallmark Channel's 2023 "Christmas in July" event, the plot centers around Renée (Vanessa Lengies), who, having wished for a better life, finds herself living it the very next day. However, a crucial element is absent — her husband, Aaron (Sevier). The storyline unfolds as Renée tries to win him back, recognizing that without him, her newfound life lacks meaning.

Corey Sevier didn't initially plan on acting in the movie

Speaking to the Pop Culturalist, Corey Sevier revealed that the decision to direct his wife's script was an obvious choice from the beginning. As for the acting part, not so much. "That sort of came together. I was casting the other roles. I wasn't necessarily thinking of myself for this," the actor admitted. Fortunately for Hallmark fans, Sevier took on the role because of Vanessa Lengies, with whom he had great onscreen chemistry due to the previous projects they'd worked on together.

In an interview with TV Fanatic, Sevier emphasized that he was engaged in every phase of the project, from the movie's conception to preparing for his role as Aaron and ultimately the post-production process. While taking on the dual roles of director and lead actor for "Take Me Back for Christmas" was a considerable task, he'd be happy to do it again. As Sevier reasoned, "The reward is [that] you really get to get your fingerprints on every aspect."

Despite the challenges of juggling the responsibilities of both actor and director, Sevier clarified to The Harlton Empire that Lengies, who portrays the film's protagonist, Renée (and whose perspective we see the movie play out from), had an incredibly demanding role too. As the Hallmark star concluded, "There was never a dull moment on set, that's for sure!"

Multiple close connections were formed on the set

The family affair on the set of "Take Me Back for Christmas" extended far beyond Corey Sevier and Kate Pragnell's marriage. While not technically family, Sevier and Vanessa Lengies have known each other for nearly their entire lives. According to Just Jared, they met on the set of "Lassie," when Sevier was 12 and Lengies was 10. This also isn't their first on-screen reunion; they previously co-starred in another Hallmark movie, "Heart of the Holidays." Reflecting on their successful collaborations, Langies noted, "I think [it] really helps to have the audience feel the soul, the soulful love there, and our mutual respect."

Sevier, while acknowledging that "Take Me Back for Christmas" took a swift 13 days to shoot, also underscored the significance of their shared history as well as a previous collaboration with the production team. "There was a real family element to the film, and that allowed us to get the most out of the limited time we had," he told Pop Culturalist.

Despite the unique circumstances, the unusual setup wasn't new for the team. Sevier and Langies, as mentioned, starred in "Heart of the Holidays," which, again, Sevier directed and Pragnell scripted. The trio seems to have found the winning Hallmark recipe for the holiday season, and we can't wait to see what they've got cooking next.