Interview With Screenwriter Tim Ware and Executive Producer Kristin Booth, “Winter’s Dream”

By Ruth on January 26, 2018 in Interview, movie, television
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Being the dedicated Hallmark fan and Postable that I am, I can recall when the lovely Kristin Booth sent out an Instagram post about an upcoming movie she and her husband wrote together. When she responded to my congratulatory comment, she revealed that she was to be the executive producer on this one, and suddenly my exhilaration level rose exponentially. On a whim, I asked her if she and her husband would be interested in arranging an interview to promote this film, and when she agreed, I was thrilled beyond belief! Just recently, she and her husband, Tim Ware, chatted with me about the genesis, development, and execution of this momentous project. Of course, I seized the opportunity to pick her brain about Signed, Sealed, Delivered as well (I mean, why wouldn’t it?)!

Tim Ware & Kristin Booth

RH: Kristin and Tim, I am so glad it worked out to talk with you both today before the premiere of Winter’s Dream.

KB: Thank you for reaching out, Ruth.

TW: We’re very excited.

When I initially saw the post that Kristin made about this upcoming movie, I was so excited. And having you both involved with the project I think is just great!

TW: I think we’re cautiously optimistic that it’s gonna do really well.

Where did this idea come from? Is it something that has been in the works for a while?

TW: Yeah, I guess it was summer of 2016–or maybe even a little earlier than that–we really had wanted to work on something together. We brainstormed a few ideas, and this was the one that kept on bubbling to the top. I grew up with more of a sports background. I am Canadian, so I play a lot of hockey obviously. I wanted to come up with a story that had more of a sports backdrop for the romance. That seemed to be more of a natural fit for my sensibilities and for my personal experience. Growing up, I wouldn’t say that I was someone who watched a ton of romance movies. {laughs} Of course, over the last while, I have watched all of Kristin’s stuff. And that is how I have gotten more of a sense of the structure of those movies. So I tried to come up with something that would combine the two elements into something that would be organic for my talent level.

KB: For me, I love the Hallmark family so much, that I wanted to do more with them. And we’re hoping that this is just the beginning.

Oh definitely! That would be amazing. And Kristin, this is your first time being an executive producer, right?

KB: Yes, that is true. A whole other set of skills come into play when you’re executive producing. In many ways, I was just kind of thrown in, and it was sink or swim. I was learning on the fly, but it was an incredible experience. I am so grateful for it. You know, I’ve always been a team player when it comes to making film and television. I’ve always believed it’s not just about one person or the actors or whatever. It’s this entire team working together. And this really, really cemented that. I got to see how everything works behind-the-scenes. It was really an experience to be involved in that when normally I’m not. It was pretty incredible.

Kristin Booth Credit: Copyright 2017 Crown Media United States LLC/Photographer: Ryan Plummer

When you both pitched this idea to Hallmark, how long did that process take?

TW: It was kind of interesting. Like I said, we came up with the concept in 2016. We didn’t do an in-person pitch initially. We sent it in via email.

KB: Well, let’s back it up a bit. We actually pitched a Christmas movie to them first, and it was a little off-brand for them. So while they passed on that, they really liked Tim’s writing, and they liked our teamwork. So they asked us if we had anything else. So we sent in a couple of pitches via email. A couple months later, we got an email back saying, “Hey, we really like this one.” And at the time, it was called Heart of the Mountain.

TW: There was actually quite a gap there because we heard about it in February of last year. That was when we finally got the go-ahead that they were putting this into development. And from there, it picked up steam. So for most of last year, it was the development process and obviously writing the script as well.

Dean Cain, Kristy Swanson, Lloyd Eisler Credit: Copyright 2017 Crown Media United States LLC/Photographer: Ryan Plummer

So, Tim, was this your first time writing something?

TW: No, I’ve written a ton of stuff. This is the first one that finally actually got to the screen. Unfortunately, with writing, things get mired in the development process and more often than not don’t quite make it to the finish line. I’ve had a ton that have been sort of in the pipeline.

KB: Yes, several have been optioned and then put into development.

TW: Yes, and then for a variety of reasons, the rug gets pulled out from under them.

KB: Usually, the money falls through. {laughs}

Sadly, I hear that from a lot of people. I know it can be a very tough business.

TW: Yeah, it is. So it’s incredibly gratifying to see something actually make it all the way to the screen. So hopefully, it’s going to be the first of many now. But it was definitely not an overnight-type thing. I’ve been working in this business for quite a while now on many different genres and different formats. And to finally have something make it through the whole process is just amazing.

I’m trying to remember exactly when you filmed this.

KB: We went to camera November 20th. That was our first shooting day. Tim didn’t even get sent to draft–which means starting on the script–till mid-September. So it was a very, very quick turnaround.

That really is quick! Hallmark really amazes me at how quickly they get these things out. 

TW: I don’t know how they do it especially keeping such a high level of quality. It’s pretty awe-inspiring how efficient they are.

Did both of you go to set when it was being filmed?

TW: Yes, Kristin was there every day, and I was there as much as I could.

KB: ‘Cause we have our five-year-old. {laughs}

TW: We are from Toronto, and so we don’t have as much family out here to pitch in when we need it. So we were kind of doing double duty. I was on set as much I could be, but Kristin was the one who was consistently there all the time.

Which is really neat because I know sometimes executive producers are not able to be as present due to scheduling conflicts and other reasons. So I think it was great, Kristin, that you were not only able to be there every day, but you were taking pictures. You shared a lot of behind-the-scenes stuff, and I think that really helped the fans to get more excited about it.

KB: Well, it was really just me sharing my excitement ’cause I was just really blown away by the process and being part of something right from the beginning. You know, as an actor, you often get brought in after there has been months and months of work, and you step in knowing you are there to do your job now. But with this movie, Tim and I developed this together. He wrote it, and I would give notes. It was really sort of our baby from the beginning, and I was just super excited to see it all coming together. In fact, I think I was more excited than the fans. {laughs}

Now, the two actors that you have starring in this film…

KB: We could not have gotten luckier!

TW: Yeah, Kristy Swanson and Dean Cain are a real dream team. I think we hit the jackpot with them. Those two are friends in real life, and it really translates to the screen.

Dean Cain, Kristy Swanson Credit: Copyright 2017 Crown Media United States LLC/Photographer: Brendan Meadows

KB: Yes, they already have the built-in chemistry.

TW: Yeah, they have such great chemistry, and they get along extremely well off-camera.

KB: And they’re both really incredible people. We thoroughly enjoyed working with them. They’re so collaborative and enthusiastic and passionate. We really did have a great time.

And then the director that you got, David Winning, is one of my favorite directors. 

TW: His whole team was great. He has a lot of people on his team, and they all love him and work together from project to project. The DOP, Tony {Anthony C. Metchie}, was amazing. The entire crew again were just super nice people, and they were all committed to making it as good as it possibly could be.

KB: Yes, such a hard-working crew. We just got so blessed.

And the location you had! All of the Winterfest movies that Hallmark has been doing have had unbelievable scenery and fantastic actors and storylines. I’ve watched them all so far, but I see this one as the grand finale. 

KB: Yes! That’s what we hope too!

The pictures you shared from the set were just gorgeous.

TW: With that location, one thing they did not need to do was add in any CGI snow. You really felt like you were in this winter paradise. It’s only a couple hours out of Vancouver, but it felt so remote and sort of pristine and untouched. In fact, there was a scene where I had to take a chairlift up. I was late getting to the set. I asked the guy at the top, “Where are they shooting?” He told me it was down this one pathway. It took me about fifteen minutes of walking through completely untouched powder through the woods trying to find this place. I thought I was lost to the point where I was starting to wonder about wolves and cougars. It really felt like you were in a beautiful winter paradise.

Kristin, do you make a cameo in this movie?

KB: {laughs} Well, I don’t actually have a cameo, but if you watch really, really closely, I do cross through frames at one point in the film. Kind of like a “Where is Waldo” moment. “Where is Kristin?”

{laughs} Well, I have no doubt Postables will be the ones with eagle eyes searching for you, and they’ll probably be the ones who will find you too. It’s got to be incredibly gratifying to you that the Postables have come out with such wonderful support for the movie.

KB: Oh, yes. I always think I can’t be any more surprised by the devotion and the commitment of the Postables to us as actors in the show, and then I’m always constantly blown away by them again. They just keep upping the ante. And they have been so amazingly supportive of this venture of Tim’s and mine. I just can’t thank them enough. My heart just explodes with all the support and love they provide for us. It’s just amazing.

I’m with you there. I see the support they pour out. Even though this is not Signed, Sealed, Delivered, they’re still coming out!

KB: I agree; it’s incredible.

What are you hoping viewers will take away from this film?

Dean Cain, Kristin Booth Credit: Copyright 2017 Crown Media United States LLC/Photographer: Ryan Plummer

TW: Obviously, I hope the romance comes through for them. But what I really think it’s about is never letting life defeat you. You should always be learning lessons from anything that happened in your life and turning it into a positive. The story is about this professional skier who has an accident and leaves the professional realm and kind of goes into a shell for a while, both in her romantic life and her professional life. It’s not until she realizes that failure is actually the only way to move forward in your life. You learn through failure, and it should never ben be seen as a negative to fail. That opens up a new avenue for her to explore as a coach. By taking that leap, she opens herself up to opportunities in her romantic life as well. So I think that’s what we’re hoping for. But overall, we’re just hoping that people enjoy it. We hope they enjoy the scenery and enjoy the camaraderie and the ambiance.

KB: And what I love about it too is that even though it is a romance movie and it’s Hallmark, there’s some really fun and funny moments in the film as well. Dean Cain definitely brought his comedic chops, and I think people will really enjoy that as well.

Without giving spoilers, is there a favorite scene that you are both looking forward to in the film?

Credit: Copyright 2017 Crown Media United States LLC/Photographer: Ryan Plummer

TW: Yes, there is a visual that I can’t wait for people to see. I don’t want to give it away. You’re saying it’s the grand finale, and I think the fact that we’re the last movie, this final scene in the film does really tie things up. I think it’s sort of the grand finale for Winterfest. It looks beautiful, and it’s my favorite visual scene. But I also have a scene I really like between Kristy’s character and the young skier who she’s coaching where she tries to get her over her fear, and it all is relating to her past experiences to get her over the hump. It’s to do with a memento that the young skier has kept with her over the years. I don’t want to give too much away, but that’s my favorite scene.

KB: I think for me, I agree with Tim that the last scene of our film is pretty memorable. And there’s an event that happens on the mountain that is just absolutely breathtaking. But prior to that, there’s a race scene, and every time we watched it in post-production and doing the editing, I just got goosebumps. It’s a moment of triumph, and I hope the audiences will enjoy it as much as I did putting it together and seeing it develop. We were so lucky to get a former Olympian skier to do our stunts. Julia Murray is a Canadian former Olympian, and she did all the stunt work for our young skier. She did such a wonderful job, and the race at the end is just fantastic.  I hope everyone really enjoys it. I love it. We also had Kristy’s husband, Lloyd Eisler do a cameo; he plays our announcer during that race. So that was pretty cool too. He’s a former Olympian skater. We definitely had a pretty good team on this one.

Kristy Swanson, Lloyd Eisler Credit: Copyright 2017 Crown Media United States LLC/Photographer: Ryan Plummer

You both said this was hopefully the first of many. Does this mean that you have other things that you are currently working on together?

TW: Right now, we have a number of them that we are in the early stages of working on, and we’re hoping that one of those will take off. I know that Kristy and Dean are interested in doing some more stuff as well. We’re very interested in continuing this relationship with Hallmark and finding a way to bring more great stories to the screen for them. We are very excited to keep working with them.

It’s really amazing how there are a lot of husband-wife teams that work with Hallmark. It seems like a company that is very favorable to couples working together and families being involved.

TW: Yes, I would say that Hallmark itself is really a big family. That’s one of the core elements that makes them so special. It is about families. So why not have the people working there actually be families? It sort of helps bring that familiarity and love to the screen.

KB: Yeah, practice what you preach–which is what they’re doing, which is great.

Kristin, I know Postables would be upset if we didn’t at least mention the next Signed, Sealed, Delivered movie that’s coming up on February 11th. 

KB: Yes, The Road Less Traveled. Then we go to camera on our next one, SSD #10, on Monday. And oh my gosh, I have to tell you! I know I say this a lot, but I think this is Martha’s {Williamson} best work so far. It’s an incredible script. And Carol Burnett is coming back. And we have Papa O’Toole. We have Ramon. We have all the favorites in this one, and it’s really a beautiful, beautiful script. Certainly, Postables will not be disappointed. Of course, we’ll be on social media while we’re shooting, and I’m sure we’ll have the camera rolling behind-the-scenes as it often does, catching all our awkward moments. But we’ll be sure to post lots of pics and post fun tidbits about the one we’re filming. Unfortunately, we’re not gonna make it onto Home & Family to promote the one on the 11th because we’ll be shooting this next one. We need as much word on social media as possible to get the word out about this next one.

Kristin Booth, Crystal Lowe, Eric Mabius, Geoff Gustafson Credit: Copyright 2018 Crown Media United States LLC/Photographer: David Strongman

With The Road Less Traveled, is there anything you can tease about it?

KB: Oh, yes! You just wait till you see #ShOliver flirting! It’s the most you’ve ever seen them flirt, I will tell you that. It gets a bit steamy.

TW: I do have to say it’s tough to be competing with #ShOliver. I wonder in my everyday life how I can compete with him.

{laughs} I was actually gonna ask you about that.

TW: Yeah, Oliver sets a pretty high bar. {laughs}

KB: I told him he had to go out and buy some suits.

TW: I’ve been searching the suit racks for good deals.

KB: And he also needs some suspenders.

TW: I’m also trying really hard to like Yoo-hoo as well.

{Kristin and I shrieked with laughter on that one.}

Well, he probably needs to read up on his Shakespeare too.

KB: Yeah.

TW: Yeah, that’s true.

I want to thank you both for taking the time to talk with me. I am so excited for Winter’s Dream and for you both, and I have no doubt that it’s gonna be the grand finale. I have the sense that it’s gonna be phenomenal. 

KB: Aw, thanks, Ruth.

TW: Thank you so much.

I can’t think why it wouldn’t be successful. Nothing it competing against it, and I know the Postables and the Hallmark fans will be out in full force for this one. 

KB: And what’s great too is the buzz around the Olympics. It’s about a former Olympic hopeful and future Olympic hopeful and winter skiing. It all ties in really well with the season right now.

Excellent point. Thank you, Kristin and Tim, again. I can hardly wait to watch it!

TW: It truly is a pleasure and nice meeting you, Ruth.

KB: Thanks for the support, Ruth. We so appreciate it.

From the outset of this entertaining and informative interview, I was able to sense the excellent working relationship that Tim and Kristin have. While one would expect a couple to be able to work well together, regrettably in this day and age, far too many couples are at odds with each other. But I can tell you unequivocally that Tim and Kristin are not only an ideal match professionally but personally as well. They have a mutual respect and love on such a profound level that it radiates from within their innermost beings, permeating every word they speak and every task they accomplish. It is their dream to work together, and neither one of them dominates the limelight. Kristin is certainly no prima donna, and Tim has no trouble articulating sincerely about his work and even kidding just a bit about Kristin’s on-screen work. Neither are threatened by the success of the other. In fact, on the contrary, they do nothing but build each other up and work in perfect tandem. I have no doubt that issues arise now and then as they would in every relationship, but their love and commitment to each other is what keeps them grounded, pragmatic, and ultimately united. This is not a couple that needs to inform everyone about how much they love each other; they simply demonstrate it through their unadulterated, everyday interactions, and they completely accept the other person just the way they are. 

So I would invite everyone to tune in Saturday, January 27th to the Hallmark Channel for the incontestable grand finale of Winterfest, Winter’s Dream. While I can attest to the fact that all Hallmark’s Winterfest programming has been undeniably extraordinary, this movie is slated to be the one that brings this invigorating block of programming to a definitive conclusion in such a magnificent fashion that my mind cannot even conceive of the splendor and majesty that Tim and Kristin have provided through the remarkable cast, crew, and plot of this upcoming film. Furthermore, I would invite everyone to visit all of Tim’s and Kristin’s links below and consider following them if applicable. While this network is beginning to highlight the work of so-called “power couples” that are providing us with astounding and authoritative programming, I believe Hallmark may be focusing this weekend on the labor of a couple that is going to become my personal favorite. After all, I am a Postable to the core and a Hallmarkie through and through, and having these two on my indisputably preferred network is one of the most overwhelming things on the planet. May this be the first of countless successful ventures for the intensely talented and immeasurably kind Tim and Kristin!

FOLLOW TIM

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Credit: Copyright 2017 Crown Media United States LLC/Photographer: Ryan Plummer

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About the Author

RuthView all posts by Ruth
43-year-old single mother of an active 14-year-old girl Born in Tacoma, WA; lives in Yelm, WA Entertainment Writer Available For Interviews and Reviews Substitute Teacher

8 Comments

  1. Net January 26, 2018 Reply

    I love this interview, Ruth! It’s Double the fun – 2 people & 2 movies!!!

    First, I can’t wait to see Tim Ware and Kristin Booth’s movie creation: “Winter’s Dream”! Since it stars two awesome, well known Hallmark actors, (Love Dean Cain & Kristy Swanson!) I just know it’s going to be great! What a wonderful way to finish off Winterfest! (Save the best for last!)

    As for “Signed, Sealed, Delivered” – oh, how I loved hearing every single detail about it!!! The one coming in February and the next one, they are getting ready to film! It sounds truly amazing – with so many of the regulars returning! I pray it’s not the last! With stories filled with such hope and inspiration, there is so much more to tell in the lives of our POstables!

    Thank you for this wonderful interview!!!

    Blessings to you all, Net
    Net recently posted…The Wedding Do Over – a PixL Original Movie!My Profile

    • Author
      Ruth January 26, 2018 Reply

      And Net thank you always for your support!

  2. Christine Szymanski January 26, 2018 Reply

    What a wonderful interview! I am looking forward to Winter’s Dream and more SSD!

  3. denise January 26, 2018 Reply

    I’m looking forward to this movie. It was nice to learn about the couple behind it.

    • denise January 26, 2018 Reply

      I should have clarified the Winter’s Dream movie–I no longer have the HM&M channel and can’t watch POstables (Signed, Sealed, Delivered).

  4. Connie January 27, 2018 Reply

    I have it to second Net’s comments. Your interview with Kristin Booth and Tim Ware is wonderful. I enjoyed it immensely. Thank you so much for sharing it with the SSD fans and Kristin Booth/Tim Ware supporters.

    • Author
      Ruth January 27, 2018 Reply

      Connie so kind of you to stop by. My pleasure to share!

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