“Sister Swap: Christmas in the City” (Image: Crown Media)
Kimberly Williams-Paisley and Ashley Williams loved working together in the ‘Sister Swap’ movies
In an interview with People magazine, Hallmark stars Kimberly Williams-Paisley and Ashley Williams said they had “the best time” making their Christmas movies together.
In the “Sister Swap” movies the real-life sisters play onscreen sisters in two movies that share characters, locations, and even story points.
In Sister Swap: A Hometown Holiday, Kimberly’s character, Jennifer, travels to her small hometown to spend Christmas with her family. In Sister Swap: Christmas in the City, Ashley’s character, Meg, visits her sister in Salt Lake City, where her family’s restaurant is in a city-wide competition.
They end up helping each other and creating two happy endings.
The sisters, who grew up in New York, said they have wanted to work together for years. Kimberly, who starred in the Father of the Bride films with Steve Martin and Dianne Keaton, and Ashley, who has appeared in How I Met Your Mother and Christmas in Evergreen, said they began working on the idea about five years ago.
Since Ashley’s husband, Neal Dodson is a director, they worked with him to develop the concept. All three serve as executive producers on the movies, which were shot over six weeks in Utah.
In the People article, the sisters said the last time they worked together was during family stage productions they put together at home.
“We used to do shows growing up, but I was always the director, producer, star,” says Kimberly.
“She was very bossy,” Ashley said.
Family and friends
In addition to sharing the screen with each other, the sisters welcomed family friend Anna Holbrook to the cast. Holbrook, who was best friends with their mother, plays their onscreen mother in the movies, something which brought on more than a few tears during production.
In an Instagram video, Williams-Paisley recalled one scene where her character was addressing a theater full of people, including Holbrook, who was smiling up at her.
“My line was about how someone would have loved this,” Williams-Paisley said. “And I was of course just thinking of Mom. Mom would have loved it.”
Linda Payne Williams passed away in 2016 after a prolonged battle with dementia.
Sister Swap: A Hometown Holiday will premiere on Sunday, December 5 on Hallmark Channel at 8/7c.
Sister Swap: Christmas in the City, will premiere on Sunday, December 12 on Hallmark Channel at 8/7c.