Hallmark Movie Channel Receives Nielsen Present with First Original Holiday Telefilm

'Christmas with Tucker' Marks Network's Top Premiere in Households, Women 25-54

While flagship service Hallmark Channel’s “Countdown to Christmas” original movie gambit propelled it to sixth-place in cable’s primetime ratings during the Nielsen month of November, Hallmark Movie Channel made some news of its own with the genre.

The Nov. 25 premiere of Christmas with Tucker, Hallmark Movie Channel’s first original holiday telefilm, registered a 1.2 household rating to become the most-watched original debut on the service among households and women 25 to 54 in network history.

Christmas with Tucker also ranked as the top-rated cable moved of the day and finished and its rating among women 25 to 54 was the second in cable on Nov.25.

Bolstered by its “Countdown to Christmas” movie gambit, Hallmark Channel was sixth for the month of November (Oct. 28 through Nov. 24) counting 1.78 million viewers on average, a 38% surge from 1.28 million in November 2012. The network’s Nov. 10 and Nov. 16 presentations of telefilms A Very Merry Mix-Up and The Christmas Ornament drew 4.75 million and 4.31 million viewers, ranking 25th and 38th among cable’s top 100, respectively.

The network already has its eye on the 2014 holiday calendar as Hallmark Channel, in collaboration with Hallmark Cards, Inc., will create the original movie, Northpole. Hallmark Channel had previously partnered with its parent company to bring to life Hallmark’s interactive storybook character, Jingle, in 2011’s original animated half-hour special, Jingle All The Way. The award-winning animated special yielded Hallmark Channel’s sequel Jingle And Bell’s Christmas Star the following year.

This time, Hallmark Channel and Hallmark Cards will produce the full-length two-hour Northpole, which  tells tale of a reporter who, with the help of her son and his teacher, recaptures the joy of the holiday season and in the process saves Christmas.

“Hallmark Channel is excited to work with a very talented team to produce the full-length, two-hour original holiday movie, Northpole,’ said Michelle Vicary, executive vice president of programming for Hallmark Channel and Hallmark Movie Channel. “Hallmark Channel is the number one destination on television for holiday programming and we know Northpole will become that instant classic that our audience will want to see every year.”