It’s the most wonderful time of the year… and that means the joy of a gay holiday Hallmark Channel movie! In The Holiday Sitter (debuting December 11th), Jonathan Bennett stars as the workaholic bachelor Sam who recruits his handsome neighbor Jason (George Krissa) for help while he babysits his niece and nephew before the holidays. One thing leads to another and guess what? Jason finds himself in an unexpected romance.
This is the third LGBTQ inclusive Hallmark movie – but it’s the first movie with a LGBTQ character in the lead. Bennett, who is officially the “King of Gay Christmas”, also serves as the executive producer and built this gay-led Hallmark Channel story from the ground up.
“I feel so passionate about telling this story and I think this movie has so much heart in it,” Bennett told GLAAD’s Anthony Allen Ramos. “It has so much humor and I think you really root for [the characters] to be together.”
He said that there was something special in the air on set while it was in production because not only was this a gay-centered story, but it also had a queer creative team working behind the scenes.
“Now that we’ve seen the movie, it’s even 10,000 times better than I even thought it was gonna be,” admitted Bennett. “There’s just something special about this one.”
The story was inspired by classic comedies, which Bennett loves. In particular, he looked to the classic John Hughes pic Uncle Buck starring the legendary John Candy. Like Uncle Buck, The Holiday Sitter tells the story of a man who is in over his head when he is asked to take care of some kids. When it comes to his own life, playing this character kind of gave him baby fever.
“I love working with kids this age because it’s just so fun to hang out,” he said. He also points out that in the movie, his love interest Jason wants to start a family on his own and adopt a baby. “It’s based on the idea of chosen family – like gay, straight, whatever you are, there is a way to create the family that you want because chosen families are just as strong and powerful,” he said.
Bennett hopes that people see that the movie is for everybody – not just the LGBTQ community. It has all the tropes of a Hallmark Christmas rom-com but they just made both leads male.
Speaking of holiday rom-coms starring Mean Girls alums, Bennett said that he has watched Lindsay Lohan’s recent holiday pic Falling for Christmas and absolutely loved it. That said, he really wants to do a Christmas movie with Lohan.
“I would want to do something that’s different than what people have already seen us do because you’re not gonna top Aaron and Katie falling in love,” he said. “We can’t fall in love anymore because we’ve done it and it was amazing – so let’s try to do something different.”
The Holiday Sitter premieres Sunday, December 11 at 8pm on Hallmark.