Actress Lauren Swickard (Dear White People, Roped) has had a result – she has made the not-necessarily-easy transition from front of camera to the writing room with her romantic drama, A California Christmas, which has also sold to Netflix and will stream this December.
A California Christmas is the story of big city executive who is challenged by his boss to convince a reluctant farmer to sell her land to their corporation. Succeed and he will be promoted to President of Acquisitions. Fail and their deal falls apart.
The first obstacle he encounters is the farmer he has to persuade, hoodwink, mislead is a beautiful young woman with doe eyes and a Colgate smile.
Will Joseph overcome his feelings for Callie and get her to sign away the farm, or will love win the day?
The three-week shoot took place in July, one of the first productions in action after the first lockdown.
Lauren told Digital Journal: “I’ve written quite a few scripts. I never thought my first one to go into production would happen during a global pandemic. I feel so incredibly blessed that our team is working together through all of the challenges that come with COVID-19. We lose two hours each day due to our precautionary guidelines and we still make our days without losing a set-up – our team is full of some of the hardest workers I’ve ever met. This is an interesting, uncharted territory and we’re fortunate to be one of the first productions up and running.
“We also know the rest of Hollywood is watching us to see how it goes.”
When is A California Christmas released on Netflix?
A California Christmas is scheduled to hit the streaming network on Monday 14th December.
A California Christmas cast
The couple at the heart of A California Christmas is real-life husband and wife Lauren Swickard and Josh Swickard, who play Callie and Joseph, and who married last December after meeting on the set of Roped, in which the played the lovers at the heart of the drama. So life imitated art imitated life! The beauty of the married couple starring in the new rom-com is that it was filmed during COVID-19 restrictions and as real-life couple, it was simple to isolate.
A California Christmas plot
Joseph works for a corporation in LA and is tasked by his boss with buying a prime piece of land owned by farmer Callie. If Joseph doesn’t manage to convince her to sign in three weeks – before Christmas – the corporation’s deal falls through and Joseph will miss out on his golden promotion.
Joseph makes his into the countryside and changes out of his city duds to appear a bit more down to earth. Only, when he arrives at the farm he’s mistaken for the new ranch hand and is immediately called into action helping Callie deliver a calf.
He is instantly smitten with the beautiful farmer and deceitfully decides to continue pretending to be the ranch hand so he can be close to her. The ruse will, of course, be found out and when it does, how will he explain himself and what impact will it have on their relationship?
Lauren posted on Instagram: “About 4 days ago I wrapped my first movie as producer, writer, and actress. This fulfilled a dream I’ve had in my heart for YEARS. Thank you to my husband for sitting with me through quarantine as I wrote this script. For the hours and hours of “Babe!!! Does this work?” “Am I good enough” – I love you @joshswickard. Thank you to all who helped me to achieve my first “written by” on screen….You know who you are.”