In an exclusive interview with TV Cheddar, The Young and the Restless star Hunter King talked about her latest movie for Hallmark Channel and how working with the network is a dream come true.
“Hallmark movies have always been like an escape to me,” she said. “You can always count on them to make you smile and leave you feeling better than before you turned it on. I thought it would be cool to be able to make people feel the same way that I felt when I watched them.”
The Professional Bridesmaid
The Emmy Award-winning actress stars in the new romantic comedy The Professional Bridesmaid, which will premiere as part of Hallmark Channel’s Spring Into Love programming event.
King plays Maggie Bailey, a woman who is so good at navigating the emotional and logistical hurdles of pulling off a wedding that she works as a professional bridesmaid.
When the mayor hires her to work at his daughter’s high-profile wedding, Maggie takes on the challenge, knowing that she needs to keep her identity a secret. The whole situation becomes even more complicated when a handsome reporter (played by Chandler Massey) starts poking around looking for a scoop.
Hunter King got her start as a child actress. While starring on the Nickelodeon series Hollywood Heights, she was cast as Summer Newman on the soap opera The Young and The Restless.
She was nominated for her first Emmy Award while she was still a tween. She took home the award for Outstanding Younger Actress in a Drama Series in both 2014 and 2015. In an interview with Soap Opera Digest, she said she keeps one of the awards in her bathroom.
“It’s just a good conversation starter when people come over and they’re like, ‘Wait, what? An Emmy’s in the bathroom?’” she said.
Working with Hallmark
In addition to starring on The Young and The Restless, King appeared on the CBS series Life in Pieces. In 2022, she starred in the Hallmark Channel movies Hidden Gems and A Royal Corgi Christmas, as well as the Hallmark Movies and Mysteries film Nikki & Nora: Sister Sleuths.
King said she has wanted to work for Hallmark since she was a child.
“Growing up, I would drive past Hallmark’s headquarters nearly every day and dream about getting the chance to be in one of their movies some day,” she said.
Interview with TV Cheddar
TVC: The concept for this film — a woman working as a professional bridesmaid — is fantastic. What was your reaction when you first read the script?
HK: I loved the script as soon as I read it. It’s such a cute story and the chemistry between the characters was there on the page already. I love romantic comedies and this film felt like one of those. Even just reading it I couldn’t wait to see what happened at the end!
TVC: Though Maggie is a pro at what she does, the wedding she is planning is under a lot of scrutiny. The stakes get even higher when a reporter (played by Chandler Massey) starts digging into her identity. Are there any particular moments you think viewers will find funny or memorable?
HK: Some really funny beats happen with the Mayor’s assistant Thomas. Thomas is very protective of the Mayor so he’s always on edge around Maggie, basically warning her not to screw this up. There were definitely a couple takes where I couldn’t keep a straight face in some of those scenes. A really memorable moment happens when Thomas looks to Maggie for help so that Henry (the reporter) doesn’t corner the mayor for an interview. The scene that follows is one of my favorites. Let’s just say…Chandler is a really good dancer.
TVC: What was it like working with Chandler Massey?
HK: I absolutely loved getting to work with Chandler Massey. He’s just such a sweet human and a true gentleman. Chandler was so much fun to work with and would always come back with the funniest responses during rehearsals. I really hope we get to work together again in the future.
TVC: You once mentioned that growing up you would drive past Hallmark headquarters and dream about being in a Hallmark movie someday. What was it about Hallmark that appealed to you? What is it like to have that dream come true?
HK: Hallmark movies have always been like an escape to me. You can always count on them to make you smile and leave you feeling better than before you turned it on. I thought it would be cool to be able to make people feel the same way that I felt as when I watched them. To be a part of the Hallmark family really does feel like a dream. Your job is to make people laugh, smile, and feel good. What’s not to love about that?
TVC: Um, weird question, but do you still keep one of your Emmy awards in the bathroom?
HK: I do! Most of my guests have seen it before so they’re used to it now, but occasionally guests will walk out with it. And the first thing people always say is “This is way heavier than I thought.”
TVC: Finally, what do you hope viewers take away from The Professional Bridesmaid?
HK: I hope people watching can feel how much fun we had making this movie. The crew and the cast were all so much fun to work with and I hope people can feel that from us. Also, I think the movie is a great reminder that beautiful things can happen with you’re able to be vulnerable.
The Professional Bridesmaid will premiere on Hallmark Channel on Saturday, April 8 at 8/7c.