Interview With Actor Andrew Walker, “The Perfect Catch”

By Ruth on April 19, 2017 in Interview, movie, television
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As a novice interviewer, one of my most favorite experiences was interviewing the amazing Andrew Walker. I know that much of the affinity I feel towards him and this chat was his kind and supportive response to my post, but he has been a favorite Hallmark actor in this household for as long as we have been Hallmark fans. In spite of Andrew’s incredibly busy schedule, recently he set aside a considerable amount of time to update me on his career, including his work with Hallmark, his upcoming projects outside of this network, and even a bit about his current and future aspirations.

RH: Nice to talk with you today, Andrew. You certainly have been busy since we last spoke.

AW: I have, and it’s been a good busy, which is nice. Especially with the family. My little one is getting bigger and bigger, and energy levels are reaching an all-time high. But we enjoy every moment along the way.

You’ve done quite a few things for Hallmark since Appetite For LoveThe Hearties are still wanting you to come back to When Calls the Heart.

from When Calls the Heart
Crown Media Press

You know, it’s funny. I was talking to one of the producers about a month or so ago, and he said he was trying to figure out how to bring me back on the show. The only problem is Billy was a bad guy, and he was on for two episodes. They said, “We can’t necessarily bring you out of jail. But I was thinking we might have your twin brother come to town who is the good version of Billy. He’d be the good brother.” I said, “Hey, man, that would be amazing! Hey, I’m down with that. Let do it!” He was joking about that, but we’ll see.

with Erin Krakow
Crown Media Press

I know Hearties would be very, very excited. It’s funny that you’re so well-remembered for just those two episodes. 

Wow, yeah, it’s truly amazing and speaks well for the fans of that show.

Well, then, I guess there’s always hope.

There is. I’d love to come back to the show. I think very highly of the Hearties, and I’m willing if the powers that be find a place for me.

Andrew Walker Credit: Copyright 2016 Crown Media United States LLC/Photographer: Bettina Strauss

After Appetite For Love, we saw you in Date With Love. I think I liked that one especially ’cause you played a teacher. 

And it was a cool take on a Hallmark film. I think they tried to go with a little bit younger demographics ’cause they hired Bailee Madison from Good Witch. She has this huge following with her Disney shows. And then they hired Quinn Lord to play her love interest. Originally the movie was called Promposal. Being Canadian, I didn’t know that term. I’d never heard it. I didn’t know that a “promposal” is when you ask your date to go to prom. I thought the movie was cute. It was a fun film, and I think it did pretty well for Hallmark too.

I think the feedback I heard from that one was that many people were not sure what they would think of you and Shenae Grimes-Beech together. Some were concerned about the chemistry you two might have on screen. But it worked really well. And everyone who seemed to initially have doubts said that it worked for them.

Andrew Walker, Shenae Grimes-Beech Credit: Copyright 2016 Crown Media United States LLC/Photographer: Bettina Strauss

Oh great! I’m so glad.

I recently got to interview Lisa Durupt.

Oh, you did? She’s amazing.

And then I interviewed Nikki DeLoach after your film with her, A Dream of Christmas, came out. Which was kinda cool.

Yes, Nikki is awesome. We have such a great time together. Obviously, this is now the second time we’ve worked together. She is like the easiest girl to have chemistry with. We’re both in the same stage of parenthood as well, so we’re just comparing notes. She’s also somebody who works really hard on set. She wants to make the most of the scenes. We only get a short period of time to prepare for these Hallmark movies. Sometimes we get hired three days before we shoot. When you’re on set, it’s such an added bonus to have somebody want to work with you on the material and brainstorm how you can make the scene more well-rounded and how you can connect the story a little bit better. Hallmark does so many films, and they’re not always on the front lines and able to experience what ties the whole story together. When you play out a scene, it could end differently than it’s written. It could end differently emotionally. Nikki is one of these actresses who likes to go back to what we shot four or five days before, and we can talk about how we ended that scene and how it relates to what we’re shooting on this day. That’s a lot of fun. That’s the exciting part of acting. Really getting into the work with your scene partner.

With A Dream of Christmas, after I heard the premise, my initial  thought was, “Oh, they’re doing one of those again.” My concern was about whether it would be good or boring. I knew it had all good actors. I wanted to know how they were going to keep it from being the same old story. Most of the time Hallmark does a really good job of trying to change it up a bit. And Hallmark did deliver in making this movie a little bit different. 

There’s that movie with Téa Leoni and Nicholas Cage called The Family Man. It’s pretty much the exact same story. I really liked that movie. It was a holiday film where his character wakes up one day and wishes he had a different life and wished he had made some different financial decisions because he would be in a better place. So I knew the story, and I had one experience before working with the director and writer of A Dream of Christmas. The film was A Bride For Christmas. It was one of the better holiday films that Hallmark had done. Gary {Yates} had a really great track record, so I trusted in him as well. I was pleasantly surprised.

I think we all were. It worked really well. And then when I heard that you three were cast in another movie together, my first thought was, “Is this going to be a sequel?” I think a lot of us thought that only because it’s really unusual for Hallmark to have the same three actors cast again in such a short period of time.

I know, I know! It’s actually so funny ’cause Lisa and Nikki got pretty close during the last film. Lisa came out to LA a couple months ago and stayed at Nikki’s house for a premiere she was doing out here for another film. As Nikki tells it, she said, “Hey, Lisa, I’m coming up to Vancouver in the next week or so.” And Lisa said, “For what?” And Nikki said, “I’m actually working on a Hallmark film.” And Lisa said, “What’s it called?” She said, “Safe At Home.” Lisa said, “Oh my gosh! I know they did an availability check with me for that film, but now that you have the role, I’m not gonna get hired ’cause they’re not gonna put us in the same movie together again.” Then Lisa called Nikki back about a day later, and she was like, “Oh my gosh, I got hired!” Then I texted Nikki and said, “Nikki, believe it or not, we’re getting married again. An offer came through for this movie, and I found out you’re the leading lady, and I immediately took it.” So we’ll see how people take to it, but it’s pretty much the same trio. We’ll see how they cut the movie together with the score and everything, but what I’ve seen so far looks pretty awesome. I think it’s going to be a really great film. Especially being the second film that Nikki and I have worked on. We were able to find so many fun moments. We weren’t thinking about chemistry. Lots of time, you spend your first five days getting to know the person. Then your last few days, you’re in stride, and then it ends. It’s fifteen-day shoots. So this one, we hit the ground running. It was a lot of fun. We’ll see how people respond to it.

I haven’t heard anything negative said about them pairing you guys up again so soon. People don’t seem to be complaining about it; they seem to be excited to see you again. Whenever I mention your name online, people get so excited. You’re definitely one of the favorite leading men with Hallmark. 

Oh, that’s so sweet, Ruth. That’s so nice to hear. I don’t pay attention to it as much as maybe I should or shouldn’t. I just try to do my work and keep a positive attitude. But that’s really nice to hear though.

In fact, when I told some of my friends that I would be interviewing you again, they said, “Oh that interview you did with him last time was one of my favorites.” I thought that was good, and I aim to make this one even better. 

That’s right. There’s always room for improvement.

Definitely. You talked to me when I was so new at what I was doing, and I look at what I wrote back then and think how I could have improved it so much.

I understand. I’m like that with my career, too.

I think artists understand this concept. So what can you tell us about your character in The Perfect Catch and the story without giving away too much?

Well, Ruth, I think it is the perfect film for America…at least, I think it is. It’s a film about a baseball star who is nearing the end of his career, and he blows a big game in the World Series. He goes home to take a break from everything. He tries to connect with his family and friends again, but he’s a fish out of water because he’s always been the hometown hero. He doesn’t like being in the spotlight, but at home he is treated like gold. He ends up connecting with his high school sweetheart. It really is about finding love when you least expect it. I think I repeat myself over and over again with these Hallmark stories, but this is the essence of the film. Finding love and finding yourself. She has a son, and she also took over the family restaurant that is losing business to the new place in town. We connect in lots of different ways, but I’ll let everyone watch the story to see how it unfolds and whether we ultimately end up together.

Chance Hurstfield, Nikki Deloach, Andrew Walker Credit: Copyright 2017 Crown Media United States LLC/Photographer: Kailey Schwerman

I think you’re right that this movie sounds great, especially for the time of year that is. 

Who doesn’t like a nice baseball story with some love? The executive producer kept saying it was like this movie where Kevin Costner played a pitcher. {Possibly For the Love of the Game, but Andrew thought it might have been Bull Durham.}

That will be one for us all to look forward to. Lisa talked about it a little bit, but she talked more about how much fun you guys had working together. When she found out you three were going to work together again, she said it was like finding out that you were going back to camp with your best friends. 

Chance Hurstfield, Nikki Deloach, Andrew Walker Credit: Copyright 2017 Crown Media United States LLC/Photographer: Kailey Schwerman

Yes, that is exactly what it felt like.

She also talked about how she and Nikki are planning to take some ideas to Hallmark in the near future so that you three can continue to work together on a more consistent basis. 

Yes, we’re going to be the Three’s Company of Hallmark. {laughs} We’re trying to pitch a TV series to them. The good news is that when Hallmark knew that all these pieces were coming together, they didn’t blink an eye. I was talking to Randy Pope, one of the bigwigs over there, and he was like, “Yeah, we didn’t think twice. You three are great together.”

Well, that’s good. Maybe you guys have a future in some kind of series, whether movies or TV series. And I didn’t want to forget Love on Ice. We saw you in that one back in January. I was looking forward to it mainly because I knew you were in it, so I knew it would be good. 

Thank you, Ruth.

And then with Kate Drummond in it, I was very excited to see her. I’ve interviewed her. And her background as a teacher has caused a kindred spirit connection.

Kate is awesome. She’s so sweet.

Andrew Walker, Anna Golja, Julie Berman Credit: Copyright 2016 Crown Media United States LLC/Photographer: Shane Mahood

I know they often cast her in these mean roles, but I know that’s not how she is. The interesting thing with this movie is that people were trashing the movie before it even came out. People were saying it was a knock-off version of some other movie, but it didn’t affect the ratings or anything. But no one really took any notice of this little group of negativity. We all enjoyed the movie, and I read lots of good things about it. 

From what I remember, the ratings were great on it, at least according to what I heard from Randy.

Again, it was a little different movie for Hallmark, and it was nice to see you cast in a little bit different role. 

I thought it was entertaining. And I didn’t know how it was going to come across necessarily with me as the figure skating coach, but I have done a lot of coaching. I was a ski instructor for many years. Whether I knew anything about the sport or not, a coach is a coach, and I tapped into that side of things. I channeled my dad a bit. He’s always been a coach of mine. I had a lot of fun with the girls too. Even though Julie {Berman} wasn’t the greatest skater, she gave it her all. Since I’m from Montreal, I am fairly proficient in hockey. I’m pretty comfortable on skates. I definitely had to get used to the points on the figure skates. But outside of that, it was a fun film.

Julie Berman, Andrew Walker Credit: Copyright 2016 Crown Media United States LLC/Photographer: Shane Mahood

It was inspirational to see the relationship between the two girls. I thought how nice it was to be able to see these two girls competing against each other, but they weren’t mean to each other. 

Exactly. I like the way they wrote that. It really was just a different generation. It was two different generations of skaters. Julie knew she wasn’t going to be going too far with it anymore. She wanted to see how far she could go and challenge herself on it. I prompted it. They were in two different places and challenging each other. And I was pushing them along a little bit.

I liked it because all too often women can get really competitive and nasty. 

Oh yeah, really catty. I think it was Gail O’Grady’s character that had to learn that lesson from her daughter. That was a great lesson in the movie.

From God Bless the Broken Road

Moving on from your Hallmark work, you also have a film coming up called God Bless the Broken Road. Will this be a feature film in the theaters?

Yes, from what I understand, we have a pretty good theatrical release scheduled in about 1800 theaters across the U.S. It was supposed to be in theaters at the end of March, but for whatever reason, it’s being pushed back a bit.

Okay, this movie sounds like something I would like to see, and I am sure it would be very appealing to the Hallmark audience as well.

Oh, yes, the movie came out so nicely. It was beautifully shot. It honors the military, and I play a NASCAR driver. Rather similar to The Perfect Catch. A sort of cocky racecar driver loses his edge in racing and goes back to his small town and finds love with a military widow..

Have they decided when they are going to release it yet?

No, a lot of the time, I’m in the dark on these kinds of things. The last time I met with the producer was about two months ago. At that time, he said it would be February/early March. But I’ll keep you posted when I do hear.

Well, the website still says March, and I thought, “Probably not.”

Yeah, probably not. {laughs}

When was this film shot?

We shot it almost exactly one year ago. It was the end of April last year.

Would this film be considered an indie film?

It was more a decent-sized budget indie film. It’s not an indie film per se, but it is a smaller budget.

from Oxalis

I know that the film Oxalis is also listed. Is this a film you mentioned the last time we talked?

Yes, it is.

I thought so. I read the description, and it sounded familiar. I remember you were going to be working on it. 

Yes, we’re right at the tail end of working on this film now. The film takes place over a fifteen-year span. So I had to grow a beard out and shave it and change my hair up a little bit. This is a true indie film. It’s rubbing a couple of pennies together and hoping a miracle happens.

The reason I remember the film is that I mentioned it last year, and one of your fans told me there was no way they were ever gonna watch that.

Well, actually there’s no blood. It’s not dirty, and it’s not a violent film. There’s a couple scenes–one where there’s a struggle and one that is a little violent. Basically, I kill myself. The movie is a psychological thriller. It’s the writing that is great.

from Oxalis

So this film will go to film festivals?

Exactly. We shot a lot of it in New York. We would love for it to be in Tribeca Film Festival. Being Canadian, I would love to get into TIFF {Toronto International Film Festival} as well. But we’ll see. We have high hopes for it. We’re fine-tuning a lot of it now. It’s almost in the more difficult stage because of all the minutiae. It’s almost easier to tackle when it’s all broad strokes and you’re just getting the scenes done. But now that the scenes are done, editing it and putting the right music to it and making sure the people can follow the story line….it is a psychological thriller after all. Having very limited funds to shoot it, we had to be really smart how we told the story. It’s also a first-time director, so he’s working night and day right now and just trying to make sure it comes out the way he wants it to come out. But he’s a great film buff. He’s a friend of mine. He’s one of these guys who watches four movies a week and reads two books every week. A really smart guy.

Last year, I probably would have said I wouldn’t watch this film, but I am more open to this style of film now. And I’m sure some Hallmark fans will be open to it too. So your film sounds very interesting to me.

Well, great. I’m looking forward to letting you know when it’s out.

Is there anything else coming up that you can mention that we haven’t discussed?

Nothing else at the moment. I am looking at producing and possibly acting in a few new projects for Hallmark. I have some pitches into them right now. It’s all still in the beginning stages, but there’s one project I’m really excited about, but I wouldn’t want to say anything and potentially jinx it. It’s a really well-known brand, and that’s all I can give you right now. I think it could do really well as a series for Hallmark.

Photo by Catie Laffoon

Photo by Catie Laffoon

That sounds exciting. I’m so glad when actors are pursuing those kinds of things. I think that’s a really smart thing to do. 

Thank you. This is the fun stuff, the creative side of things that I love to do. And it teaches me so much more as an actor as well. I’ve only produced one other project in the past, and that was about seven years ago. It was a documentary about pirates in Somalia.  I learned a lot while doing it. I don’t think I’d do another documentary again. It’s a very tedious process. Sure, you learn a lot about the subject, and it’s very interesting to piece it together and see the story come together. On the flip side, there’s not a lot of money to be made in it. It’s very niche. It was a great experience, but that being said, I’d like to be a part of something with a little more structure and as we know, Hallmark has money to make these projects and it’s not like we’re trying to make miracles happen on a tight budget. And this one concept I have, I’m passionate about the story. There are a few concepts, but one of them is a more well-known brand of books. So we’ll see what happens.

One more thing. If I remember right, didn’t you have some kind of business that you were doing on the side?

Yes, cold-pressed juice. We just had our four-year anniversary two or three months ago. We are finally coming into some greener pastures, which is nice. Kind of turning the corner after the four-year mark. We’ve been in the grind for a long time with it. It’s really my wife’s project. She is the one that manages everything. When we spoke last, I think we only had one store. We opened another store about seven or eight months ago. We also sell to a hundred and sixty coffee shops and local hotels as well. We also sell a little bit up in the Silicon Valley. It’s a great business. People drink the juice and feel amazing afterward. I never went to college, but this business has given me my business degree in  a way. We’ve essentially put ourselves through Business 101. We used to manufacture the juices ourselves, but we have a company that does it for us now. We manage the stores, distribution, and it’s been a lot of great learning.

I enjoy being busy. If I weren’t busy acting, juicing, or producing, I’d be busy doing something else. I need to keep my mind active. If we didn’t have a juice business, I’d pursue another business. Before juice, it was real estate. I try to have my hand in a lot of different things, and it’s always smart to have a back-up plan with acting.

Andrew Walker, Nikki Deloach Credit: Copyright 2017 Crown Media United States LLC/Photographer: Kailey Schwerman

People often ask how I “get” actors to talk to me as they do, and I believe that the answer is demonstrated quite clearly here. It’s called mutual respect and active listening, two skills which Andrew possesses in abundance. From the first chat we ever had, Andrew has been nothing but gracious, benevolent and supportive. He took an interest in me, and while I already was a devout fan, my admiration for him went beyond his on-screen persona. The secret of his success lies in the fact that he is authentic in every aspect of his life. He never attempts to project an image that goes contrary to the fiber of his being. While I know that he has breathed life into less-than-respectable characters at one time or another, he always seeks to find the humanity within them and portray them as professionally and as genuinely as possible. Thankfully, he has been blessed with an incredible work ethic and an artistic temperament that impels him to improve his skill set, no matter the task set before him. Whether he is spending time with his family, characterizing an on-screen love interest, pitching ideas to Hallmark, or investing himself in the family business, Andrew’s attention to detail, excellence, and advancement is solid, steady, and true to the core. Andrew definitely belongs in the uppermost echelon of favorite Hallmark (or any network) leading men, but of course, his signature humility would probably not permit him to consider such a high honor. But then again, his charitable nature perchance might accept the title as bestowed, but it would only motivate him to even more substantial prowess in his acting capabilities.

Be certain that you tune in to the Hallmark Channel on Saturday, April 22nd (or DVR it like I am–sorry, I’m out of town), for the premiere of what will undoubtedly be another diamond amongst the hundreds of Hallmark Channel movie gemstones that the network consistently brings to the viewers–The Perfect Catch. Additionally, please check out all of Andrew’s links below and throw your unswerving support behind one of the nicest, kindest, and most gifted actors who exists in the entertainment world today!

FOLLOW ANDREW

Twitter

Instagram

IMDB

Nikki Deloach, Andrew Walker Credit: Copyright 2017 Crown Media United States LLC/Photographer: Kailey Schwerman

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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About the Author

RuthView all posts by Ruth
42-year-old single mother of an active 13-year-old girl Born in Tacoma, WA; lives in Yelm, WA Entertainment Writer Available For Interviews and Reviews Substitute Teacher

2 Comments

  1. Rachelle April 25, 2017 Reply

    You really interview Andrew Walker? Cool, I’m a big fan and as a fan this is a very interesting article. Thanks for sharing

    • Author
      Ruth April 25, 2017 Reply

      Yes, Rachelle, this was my second interview with him. Great guy. Thanks for stopping by.

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