Hallmark Criticized for Christmas Movies Being 'Too White'

Crown Media United States LLC/Photographer: Allister Foster

Chad Michael Murray in 'Write Before Christmas'
Crown Media United States LLC/Photographer: Allister Foster

Representation on TV and in movies (basically, everywhere) is everything, but it sounds like Hallmark Channel has definitely been slacking -- especially when it comes to its famous Christmas movies. In fact, Hallmark's getting called out for its Christmas movies being "too white," and as much as we love them, we've gotta admit that this is true. 

So what happens next?

  • Out of 24 new Hallmark Christmas movies this season, only four of them have black leads. 

    Chaley Rose, Rome Flynn A Christmas Duet
    Crown Media United States LLC/Photographer: David Dolsen

    We're living in 2019, y'all -- this is kind of embarrassing. Four movies with black leads and 20 with white leads? Yeah, that's not representative at all of what America looks like ... and believe it or not, people of all colors celebrate the Christmas season and want to see people who look like them on TV -- even when it comes to delightfully cheesy romantic movies like the ones on Hallmark. 

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  • However, the Hallmark Channel CEO doesn't seem concerned about it. 

    Sam Page, Maggie Lawson The Story of Us
    Crown Media United States LLC/Photographer: Vance Beaupre

    In an interview on The Hollywood Reporter's podcast, Bill Abbot, who heads up Crown Media Family Networks, says that the company is just making movies that have the most potential. And apparently, those are mostly movies with white leads. 

    (Sigh ...)

    "In terms of broadening out the demographic, it's something we're always thinking about, always considering and we'll continue to make the movies where the best scripts are delivered to us and what we think have the most potential," he said.

  • We've heard this excuse before, but honestly, Hallmark can do better.

    Ali Liebert, Peter Porte Cherished Memories A Gift to Remember 2
    Crown Media United States LLC/Photographer: David Astorga

    Don't get us wrong. We can't get enough of seeing Candace Cameron Bure find love in wacky situations at Christmas time -- and we get that the movies are popular. But there's also room for her and for leads who don't look like her. Wouldn't it be better (and create more interesting, different movies) if we had a little variety in what the leads look like -- instead of people of color playing the best friend, the assistant, or the random people staying in the inn? 

    Come on -- not everyone is white! 

    Streaming services like Netflix, and even networks like Lifetime, are doing better when it comes to diversity, so why can't Hallmark jump on board too? 

  • We can only hope Hallmark makes changes next year.

    Larissa Wohl, Candace Cameron Bure Countdown to Christmas 10th Anniversary Preview Special
    Crown Media United States LLC/Photographer: Kim Nunneley/Alexx Henry Studios

    Hopefully, if we make our voices heard, they'll make diversity among leads more of a priority. Otherwise, they're going to stick to their current strategy ... which, for a large part of the population, just isn't very representative.