Katie Lee Biegel she will admit that her novel Groundwell Hallmark getting the movie treatment is a “welcome surprise” given that it published the book until 2011. The movie, which premieres Aug. 21 at 9 p.m. on Hallmark Movies & Mysteries, he stars Lacey Chabert and Hector Rivera.
“When I first heard that Hallmark wanted to go into production on the movie, Lacey was the first person I thought of,” Katie said. HollywoodLife EXCLUSIVE. “I really wanted her for the role because I’m such a fan of hers. I think she is so fantastic in the Hallmark movies. I think it’s like the 32nd Hallmark movie. She’s just so good and so believable, and I think she’s a great actress. Hector really embodies Ben and the two of them when you see them together on screen have great chemistry.”
The film follows a chef named Emma who travels to Hawaii after a personal and professional setback. During her stay, she meets Ben, a handsome, reclusive surf instructor whose lessons help her find her feet again.
The cooking show host serves as an executive producer and also makes a cameo in the film. “It was an unexpected surprise,” Katie admitted. “I was so excited when they asked me to do a cameo. I’m playing myself, so it wasn’t real acting. I was a little nervous that I couldn’t remember my lines, but our director was great. He made me feel comfortable. I was probably the most nervous when I had to film a scene with Lacey and just talk to her one-on-one because most of it was me judging a cooking competition, so I felt like, hey, I can do this. But when I had to give something that wasn’t just a food review, I got a little nervous.”
On the journey of download Groundswell on the TV screen, changes have been made. “It’s quite different in the movie version than the book version, but I kind of liked that,” Katie noted. “I felt that my characters have taken on a new light and a new dimension. It’s fun to see how the screenwriter shapes my original story to make it suitable for a TV movie. I adore it. When I went to Hawaii, it was all the moments that excite me all day to feel like I can’t believe this is happening and to see it at all.”
Never The kitchen The co-host watched the movie for the first time, it brought her to tears in the best way. “I cried. I was crying. I just felt like I couldn’t believe it actually happened,” Katie said HollywoodLife. “It was honestly a dream come true, and when they do the last line of the movie – I won’t say what it is to spoil it for anyone – but it brought me to tears. I’m just amazed by the whole thing.”
The movie features a number of great food dishes. Katie had a chance to reunite with one Top cook alum in Groundwell. “I talked to the writers about different dishes to feature and then my co-judge in the cooking competition scenes Lee Ann Wong from top cook,,” Katie revealed. “I met Lee Anne years ago when we were on the first season of it Top cook together. So when it came time to make my judge, I immediately thought of Lee Anne since she lives in Hawaii. So we cast her in that role and Lee Anne actually stepped in and did a lot of the food styling for the film. She’s such a talented stylist, so she came in and made the plates that were Lacey’s and made them look amazing.”
By seeing her book come to life on TV, Katie hopes viewers will take away that “you always have the power within you. You just have to find it. It’s always there. Surfing is really a metaphor for that and you learn to pick yourself up to see that you have this strap that secures your ankles to the board so if you fall you can pull yourself back up. I think it’s really about how sometimes you lose everything you thought you wanted is how you find exactly what you need.”
Katie has published several cookbooks over the years, but Groundswell it remains her only novel. She said HollywoodLife that he “would love to write another novel or screenplay. This is something I really hope to do next. I feel like my brain cells aren’t all there since I have the toddler running around. I haven’t been able to think of another story, but maybe once school starts, I’ll be able to write a novel again.”
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