Starring Dolly Parton, Christine Baranski, Jenifer Lewis, Treat Williams and directed and choreographed by three-time Emmy and Golden Globe winner Debbie Allen, Christmas on the Square features 14 original Dolly songs in what is sure to become a new holiday classic.
In these one-on-one interviews from The Front Porch, the cast and crew share special memories from on and off the set. Director and Choreographer Debbie Allen was overjoyed to slip back into her musical theater shoes. Christine Baranski welcomed the role of yet another "Christmas Scrooge" as long as it was opposite an angel played by Dolly Parton. And Jenifer Lewis hopes this film will fill everyone's hearts with some Christmas joy during a time when we may need it most. Everyone has a "Dolly Story" and within these interviews, this loveable cast shares how they forged lasting friendships while making the film.
Sam Haskell is the founder of Magnolia Hill Productions. Partnering with Dolly Parton, Magnolia Hill produced Christmas on the Square and Dolly Parton's Heartstrings for Netflix. He also produced two television movies for NBC, Dolly Parton's Coat of Many Colors and Dolly Parton's Christmas of Many Colors: Circle of Love. Coat of Many Colors drew more than 16 million live viewers making it the most viewed film on broadcast TV in over six years. Christmas of Many Colors: Circle of Love garnered 14.5 million live viewers and received an Emmy Nomination
Matthew Johnson has an impressive resume of background vocal appearances with the likes of Pharrell, John Legend, Jennifer Lopez, Childish Gambino and Stevie Wonder. And he has spent the better part of a decade under the expert tutelage of Debbie Allen honing his acting and dancing skills. Now, Matthew finds himself playing Mack, a devoted father and upstanding member of the community in Dolly Parton’s Christmas on the Square. He says he relied on the positive influences of his father for the role. Matthew, whose parents are celebrating 50 years of marriage, says he was honored to portray the role. When describing Mack, he says,
“He’s a ‘best of both worlds’ type of guy. He is a business owner and then he also manages to be a great father at the same time.”
Coming from a big family, Matthew has many memories from his childhood. His extended family includes 30 cousins and several aunts and uncles. According to Matthew, he comes from a talented family of singers and musicians. So it’s no surprise that music was always a huge part of family gatherings and holidays. He said,
“I can always remember my family around a piano, just singing together. My whole family sings!”
Pulling from his wholesome childhood, Matthew really connected to not only his character, but the themes surrounding him. Christmas on the Square includes 14 original Dolly Parton songs, one of which Matthew was honored to perform. In talking about the number, Matthew said,
“I sing a song that’s really dear to me called ‘A Father’s Prayer’ in this film. And I think it’s something that a lot of people can connect to, especially at this time. And I think they will be able to connect to it beyond this time.”
Matthew is somewhat of a vocal chameleon and has appeared on some of the world’s most-watched television shows including American Idol, The Voice, X Factor and Late Night with James Corden.
Seasonal cheer comes to a screeching halt when a cold-hearted woman tries to sell her hometown’s land. Can music, magic and memories change her mind? Find out in Dolly Parton’s Christmas on the Square coming to Netflix on November 22, 2020. Starring Dolly Parton, Christine Baranski, Treat Williams and Jenifer Lewis, this new holiday musical features 14 original Dolly songs. It’s sure to become a holiday hit for years to come.
"Dolly Parton’s Christmas on the Square" is an all-new holiday musical premiering on Netflix on November 22, 2020. A rich and nasty woman, Regina Fuller, returns to her small hometown after her father’s death to evict everyone and sell the land to a mall developer - right before Christmas. However, after listening to stories of the local townsfolk, reconnecting with an old love, and accepting the guidance of an actual angel, Regina starts to have a change of heart. This is the story about family, love, and how a small town’s Christmas spirit can warm even the coldest of hearts. Starring Dolly Parton, Christine Baranski, Jenifer Lewis, Treat Williams, and directed and choreographed by three-time Emmy and Golden Globe winner Debbie Allen. Featuring 14 original songs by Dolly Parton.
"Dolly Parton’s Christmas on the Square" is produced by Magnolia Hill Productions and Sandollar Productions in association with Warner Bros. Television for Netflix. Executive Producers include Sam Haskell, writer Maria Schlatter, Debbie Allen, and Dolly Parton.
Nine-time Grammy winner DOLLY PARTON will play “ANGEL.”
A funny, strong, loving and “in charge” Angel, made of blonde hair, white chiffon, light, and love. Angel enters Regina Fuller’s life to help her find forgiveness, the truth and ultimately happiness.
CHRISTINE BARANSKI (The Good Fight; Mamma Mia!) will play “REGINA FULLER.”
A force of nature and owner of the town of Fullerville, where the story's set. Regina's an embittered scrooge, who is shown by Angel, the truth of her past, which leads her on a path to redemption.
JENIFER LEWIS (Black-ish, What’s Love Got to Do with It) will play “MARGELINE.”
A spitfire with a great sense of humor, she's the owner of Le Beauty Shop on the town square, and is the closest thing Regina has to a friend.
TREAT WILLIAMS (Hair; Everwood) will play “CARL.”
The proprietor of the square's General Store, who has had a soft spot in his heart for Regina since high school. He loves his town and hopes to bring it back to its former glory.
JOSH SEGARRA (Arrow; AJ and the Queen) will play “PASTOR CHRISTIAN HATHAWAY.”
The resident man of the cloth who is married to the love of his life Jenna. As they struggle to have a baby, he leads the town's resistance against Regina's selfish plans.
JEANINE MASON (Roswell, New Mexico; Grey’s Anatomy) will play “FELICITY.”
An angel-in-training who needs to "earn her wings" in the spirit of Clarence Odbody from It's a Wonderful Life.
MARY LANE HASKELL (Dolly Parton’s Heartstrings; Coat of Many Colors ) will play “JENNA HATHAWAY.”
A resilient wife and calming voice within the town of Fullerville, she's married to Pastor Christian and always counts her blessings.
MATTHEW JOHNSON (American Idol; Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater) will play “MACK.”
A single father who owns the town bar, The Lamplighter Inn. He loves his daughter Violet, and does his best to raise her on his own.
SELAH KIMBRO JONES (Hidden Figures; Star) will play “VIOLET.”
Mack's daughter who, like Regina, was raised without a mother.