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Mean Girls star Jonathan Bennett is making a sequel to his gay Christmas film – and we’re already waiting patiently under the mistletoe.
The gay actor brought some much-needed festive joy to queer people’s homes last year with The Christmas House. The film made history as Hallmark’s first ever gay Christmas film – and it even featured a kiss between Bennett’s character and his on-screen husband, played by Brad Harder.
Now, the cast has reunited to make The Christmas House 2: Deck Those Halls, according to Entertainment Weekly. The first film followed the Mitchell brothers (played by Bennett and Robert Buckley) as they returned to their parents’ house for their last Christmas in their childhood home.
According to Entertainment Weekly, The Christmas House 2: Deck Those Halls will follow the Mitchell brothers as they compete to see who can make “the best Christmas house”.
The first film also had a notably progressive subplot, which saw Bennett’s character and his on-screen husband trying to adopt a child together. Hallmark fans will be waiting with baited breath to see what’s next for the happy couple in The Christmas House 2.
Bennett has already shared three snaps from the set of the upcoming sequel with fans on Instagram. Two photos show him posing with his co-stars, with each actor donning their best Christmassy clothes.
Hallmark’s Christmas films have developed a huge cult following
There was much fanfare in the lead up to the 2020 Christmas season when Hallmark revealed that it would finally be releasing a festive favourite with a gay couple.
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Hallmark has built something of a cult following with its enormous line-up of Christmas films. In fact, Hallmark and Lifetimes’s festive offerings have effectively become their own genre in recent years, spawning memes and endlessly entertaining social media discourse.
The main reason they’re so popular, of course, is that they are generally highly predictable – each film usually starts out with a successful, city-dwelling woman who decides to return to her hometown for the Christmas season.
There, she inevitably meets a chiselled man with a square jaw and an endless collection of gorgeous coats. Before long, she will realise that she went to school with him back when he was still an ugly duckling.
Over the course of the usually 90-minute run-time, she will establish that her newfound love interest has a tragic backstory. The film will, of course, end with the woman packing in her life in the city and returning to her small town roots.
The Hallmark and Lifetime brand of Christmas films have a huge following – but both networks have tended to avoid meaningful LGBT+ representation, likely in an effort to placate their older, more conservative viewers.
But both channels have increasingly seen the light in recent years. In the lead up to Christmas 2020, Lifetime made what was arguably the best bad Christmas film of the season with The Christmas Setup.