Made-for-TV Christmas movies are an important contributor to Ottawa’s screen-based production industry, generating millions of dollars for the local economy and employing hundreds of residents, while showcasing our stunning locations to audiences worldwide.
Viewers can look forward to seeing Ottawa on screen in nine Christmas movies airing this fall and holiday season on Hallmark, OWN, and Lifetime. A total of 30 live-action feature-length films and nine television series have been locally-shot in 2023 to-date.
Click on a title below to learn more about the films premiering this festive season
Synopsis: Ava accepts the opportunity of a lifetime to work at the Royal Ice Hotel which leads her to a surprise whirlwind romance with the most important guest of all, the Royal Prince himself.
Directed by Marita Grabiak. Starring Katie Cassidy and Stephen Huszar.
Release date: July 8 on Hallmark (US) and the W Network (Canada). Currently available to stream in Canada on StackTV and on the Global TV App.
Synopsis: A fashion designer gets accepted into a Christmas challenge to create a new holiday-themed collection and not only finds the inspiration for her next line but decides to redesign her approach to what’s most important in life.
Directed by Max McGuire. Starring Rebecca Dalton and Jonathan Keltz.
Release date: Oct. 27 on Hallmark (US) and W Network (Canada). Currently available to stream in Canada on StackTV and on the Global TV App.
*Filmed in 2022*
Synopsis: Avery Quinn is an aspiring news anchor who’s finally getting her big break on her station’s Christmas morning newscast. But that’s put in jeopardy when she captures an intruder in her home wearing a red suit claiming to be Chris, Santa’s son, who is on his first mission. A night of adventure ensues as they find themselves being pursued by the police as well as some shady characters. Along the way, they connect over living in the shadow of their parents and inspire each other to go after their dreams.
Directed by Bradley Walsh. Starring Italia Ricci and Luke Macfarlane.
Release date: Nov. 23 on Hallmark (US) and Nov. 25 on CTV Life (Canada). Currently streaming for free on ctv.ca.
Synopsis: When ghost writer and aspiring comedian Aubri Wilson is placed in charge of the Christmas variety show, she worries she might not have what it takes to pull off this make-or-break moment in her career. With Christmas just weeks away, Aubri is in pursuit of the perfect headliner for the event. That is, until famous Hollywood comedian Mike Baxter returns to the comedy club that launched his career. There, Mike rediscovers his stand-up roots, and Aubri shows the world her inner funny girl, and as their journeys collide, they fall hopelessly and hilariously in love, laughing all the way.
Directed by Marita Grabiak. Starring Paniz Zade, Jake Epstein, Ish Morris, and Mary Walsh.
Release date: Nov. 26 on Lifetime (US) and Nov. 29 on W Network (Canada). Currently available to stream in Canada on StackTV and on the Global TV App.
Synopsis: When Jeremiah returns home for the first time in years to play a gig with his band, he is recruited to take over as the minister of music for the annual Christmas Jubilee at his home church reigniting the feud, and romance, between the pastor’s daughter Willow.
Directed by Roger Bobb. Starring Skye Townsend and B.J. Britt.
Release date: Dec. 2 on OWN (US).
Synopsis: When culinary school instructor Alicia Gellar, who formerly worked under chef Bobby, is invited to compete in the city’s annual Kringle Cook Off, she learns a family secret that could change everything. While there, she forms a connection with Kringle protégé, Logan.
Directed by Max McGuire. Starring Tia Mowry, Buddy Valastro, and Luke Humphrey.
Release date: Dec. 10 on Lifetime (US).
Synopsis: A journalist faces old fears when she returns to her hometown ice rink to cover a story. With the help of the owner and his young daughter, she begins to reevaluate her life’s purpose
Directed by Shawna Steele. Starring Celeste Desjardins and Marcus Rosner.
Release date: Dec. 14 on Hallmark Movies Now (US) and Dec. 22 on CTV Life (Canada).
Synopsis: A former beauty queen-turned-private investigator finds her calling, reunites with an old flame, and spreads the Christmas spirit when she takes the case of a famous missing portrait at a boutique art gallery.
Directed by Winnifred Jong. Starring Javicia Leslie and Brad James.
Release date: Dec. 16 on OWN (US).
Contrary to popular belief, Ottawa’s snowy season is not the main draw for the beloved Christmas genre; in fact, the majority of Christmas movies that are filmed here happen in the spring, summer, and early fall. Ottawa’s main advantage in attracting Christmas movies, in addition to provincial and federal tax incentives and skilled crew and talent, are its locations. Historic buildings, romantic courtyards, charming small towns, and an assortment of film-friendly businesses all contribute to Ottawa’s growing reputation as a desirable filming destination.
While enjoying a new locally-shot Christmas movie or (re)watching one from years past, add some fun to the festivities with our one-of-a-kind bingo card! We’ve mixed common genre tropes with Ottawa-specific elements that'll have you yelling "Bingo!" in no time.Download Bingo Card
Use the arrows on either side of the photos below to scroll through stills and behind-the-scenes images from some of this year's Christmas movies.