Hallmark writes original ‘Note’

Holiday TV movie to star Genie Francis

The Hallmark Channel has commissioned “The Note,” a holiday-themed TV movie to star Genie Francis and Ted McGinley and premiere on Dec. 8.

Co-produced by Lightworks Pictures (a Faith & Values company) and WildRice Prods., telepic concerns a lonelyhearts columnist who stumbles on a note written to an unidentified child by a passenger who dies in a plane crash. The columnist’s editor tells her to go all out to find the child before Christmas and write about her progress in the column.

Hallmark Channel, one of the most aggressive cable nets in greenlighting original movies, plans to do up to 30 in the next year. Hallmark and Lightworks will own “The Note,” said Joel Rice, of WildRice, one of the exec producers. But in most instances, Hallmark will buy just the exclusive basic-cable window to its pictures, allowing producers to retain the ancillary rights.

Rice’s co-exec producer is William Spencer Riley. Maura Dunbar is the exec in charge of production for Lightworks. The director is Doug Barr, and Paul W. Cooper has adapted the novel by Angela Hunt.

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