The Good Witch

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The Good Witch
Cover of the movie The Good Witch.jpg
Written byRod Spence
Directed byCraig Pryce
StarringCatherine Bell
Chris Potter
Country of originUnited States
Canada
Original language(s)English
Production
Producer(s)Orly Adelson
Ian McDougal
Frank Siracusa
Editor(s)George Roulston
Running time89 minutes
Release
Original networkHallmark Channel
Original release
  • January 19, 2008 (2008-01-19)
Chronology
Followed byThe Good Witch's Garden

The Good Witch is a television film that aired on the Hallmark Channel on January 19, 2008. It stars Catherine Bell as Cassandra Nightingale and Chris Potter as Chief of Police Jake Russell. The film has spawned ten sequels and a television series.

Plot[edit]

Grey House—an old, abandoned building in the town of Middleton—is infamous for being haunted by its former owner, known as "The Grey Lady". Police Chief Inspector Jake Russell decides to investigate when rumors start to spread of someone occupying the house. He enters the building, accompanied by the town mayor's wife Martha Tisdale, and is welcomed by a mysterious, beautiful woman who introduces herself as Cassandra Nightingale. She tells them she had just moved in, and plans to open a shop on Main Street.

Later, Jake Russell's children Brandon and Lori are chased by a dog on their way home from school. They end up in the front yard of Grey House and Lori falls and bruises her knee. Cassie appears and makes the dog stop just by looking at it. She talks to the dog, and tells it to behave better and go home. The dog does as told. She invites the children into her house to take care of Lori's knee. The kitchen is full of vials and bottles containing various herbs, which leads Brandon to believe that Cassie is a witch.

The new shop on Main Street is also filled with elixirs and herbs from around the world. This leads many townspeople, especially Martha Tisdale, to believe Cassie practices Black Magic.

As Jake Russell investigates mysterious occurrences, he and Cassie frequently interact. A mutual attraction evolves, leading him to ask her out on a date.

As time passes, some people in Middleton continue to be hostile toward Cassie and she considers leaving town. However, she postpones the date when Jake convinces her to stay. The couple spend a romantic evening at Grey House where they kiss.

Cast and characters[edit]

  • Catherine Bell as Cassandra Nightingale. A mysterious woman who moves into Grey House. She seems to have multiple strange abilities, the extent and origin of which are mostly unknown. These include communicating with animals, and suddenly appearing out of nowhere. Born Sue-Ellen Brook, Cassie's parents died in a car crash when she was a child, and she was raised in foster care. Cassie has a shop in Middleton called Bell, Book & Candle, where she sells various curious objects. Towards the end of the film she begins a relationship with Police Chief Jake Russell.
  • Chris Potter as Chief of Police Jake Russell. Jake is the father of Brandon and Lori. Since the death of his wife Jennifer three years ago, he gets help raising them by his father-in-law George. Since his wife's death he has become overly protective of his children. Jake is fascinated by Cassandra, but as opposed to her intuitive decision-making, he relies mainly on facts. Toward the end of the film, the two begin a relationship.
  • Matthew Knight as Brandon Russell. The son of Jennifer and Jake Russell. Brandon spends his free time playing video games. He cares for his younger sister, despite often being annoyed by her. He gets bullied by another boy in school, but after learning the boy comes from an abusive home, the two boys become friends. Brandon tells his father about the abuse, and helps get his friend away from the situation.
  • Hannah Endicott-Douglas as Lori Russell, Jake's youngest child. Since her mother's death, she has been haunted by nightmares about monsters. She receives a dreamcatcher from Cassie and is told not to dream of bunnies, which makes her nightmares disappear.
  • Catherine Disher as Martha Tinsdale, a strong willed member of city council. Martha is afraid of Cassandra ruining the good image of Middleton, as the town is looking for new investors. Convinced that Cassie practises Black Magic, she petitions for the shop to be closed.
  • Paula Boudrea as Nancy, also a member of city council. Nancy buys a parfum in Bell, Book & Candle that increases her husband's attraction to her. At the end of the film, she is revealed to be pregnant, after having tried for a long time. She befriends Cassie and makes some effort to defend her.
  • Noah Cappe as Deputy Derek Sanders, a laid back and easygoing police officer. In addition to Jake being his boss, the two men are also friends. Derek is surprised when he first sees Cassie, as she does not look like the witch townspeople have called her.
  • Peter MacNeill as George O'Hanrahan.
  • Nathan McLeod as Michael, son of Martha Tinsdale.
  • Jesse Bostick as Kyle.

Promotion[edit]

On January 15, 2008, Hallmark Channel and Limbo, the mobile entertainment community, teamed up to create and launch the cable network's first-ever mobile interactive initiative. The campaign "enhanced viewers' experience of the premiere of the network's original movie ... through 'Limbo Unique' – a game played via cell phone or online". The grand prize was $2,000 and a portrait of the "Grey Lady" that was featured in the movie.[1]

Production[edit]

Although set in Middleton, USA, it was filmed in Hamilton and Niagara-on-the-Lake, in Ontario in Canada. In the sequel, The Good Witch's Charm, the map on the wall in the police station shows Middleton located northwest of Chicago, in the vicinity of DuPage County. The names of the suburbs and interstates that are west of Chicago can be clearly seen.

Reception[edit]

The movie had great success on Hallmark Channel on the night of its premiere, making it the second-highest-rated original movie to that date. It premiered with a 3.8 HH (household) rating and was in nearly 3.2 million homes.[2] It also was #1 in its time period, propelling the channel to the #4 spot in weekly ranking.[3]

Home media[edit]

The Good Witch (Region 1) DVD was released on January 5, 2010.

The Good Witch Collection (Region 1) DVD was released October 14, 2014.[4]

Sequels[edit]

In addition to the original TV movie the Hallmark Channel has aired ten sequels.

  1. The Good Witch - January 19, 2008
  2. The Good Witch's Garden [5][6] - February 7, 2009
  3. The Good Witch's Gift [7] - November 13, 2010
  4. The Good Witch's Family - October 29, 2011
  5. The Good Witch's Charm - October 27, 2012
  6. The Good Witch's Destiny - October 26, 2013
  7. The Good Witch's Wonder [8] - October 25, 2014
  8. Good Witch: Halloween (Something Wicked) - October 24, 2015
  9. Good Witch: Secrets of Grey House - October 22, 2016
  10. Good Witch: Spellbound - October 22, 2017
  11. Good Witch: Tale Of Two Hearts - October 21, 2018

Television series[edit]

In February 2014, the Hallmark Channel announced that Good Witch had been green-lighted for a ten-episode series, starring Catherine Bell, to premiere on February 28, 2015.[9][10] Production for the first season began on October 29, 2014, in Toronto,[11] with Sue Tenney as showrunner. Bailee Madison and James Denton also star.[11][12]

Characters[edit]

  • A dark grey cell indicates the character was not in the film or the series season/special.
Character Title
The Good Witch Garden Gift Family Charm Destiny Wonder Season 1 Halloween Season 2 Secrets of Grey House Season 3 Spellbound Season 4 A Tale of Two Hearts Season 5
Cassie Nightingale Catherine Bell
Jake Russell Chris Potter
Martha Tinsdale Catherine Disher
George Peter MacNeill Peter MacNeill
Brandon Russell Matthew Knight Dan Jeannotte Dan Jeannotte Dan Jeannotte Dan Jeannotte
Lori Russell Hannah Endicott-Douglas
Derek Noah Cappe
Tom Tinsdale Paul Miller Paul Miller Paul Miller Paul Miller Paul Miller
Michael Tinsdale Nathan McLeod Edward Ruttle Edward Ruttle
Gwen Elizabeth Lennie Elizabeth Lennie
Abigail Pershing Sarah Power Sarah Power
Tara Ashley Leggat Rebecca Dalton Rebecca Dalton Rebecca Dalton Rebecca Dalton
Grace Russell uncredited uncredited Lily-Fay Mowbray Bailee Madison
Jarod Randal Edwards Randal Edwards Randal Edwards
Sam James Denton
Ryan Anthony Lemke Anthony Lemke
Stephanie Kylee Evans
Nick Rhys Matthew Bond
Anthony Shane Harte
Linda Gabrielle Miller
Ben Jefferson Brown
Eve Kate Corbett
John Dover Dan Payne
Courtney Alanna Bale Alanna Bale
Liam Seann Gallagher
Noah James Swalm[13] James Rittinger
Nurse Arrington JaNae Armogan
Vincent Gianpaolo Ventua
Adam Scott Cavalheiro
Donavan Davenport Marc Bendavid

References[edit]

  1. ^ Hallmark Channel Press Site: Company Milestones Archived December 22, 2008, at the Wayback Machine
  2. ^ "Breaking News - Catherine Bell and Chris Potter to Star in Sequel to "The Good Witch," Hallmark Channel's Second-Highest-Rated Original Movie Ever - TheFutonCritic.com". Retrieved 1 May 2016.
  3. ^ Hallmark Channel Press Release 1/23/2008 Archived October 9, 2008, at the Wayback Machine
  4. ^ "Amazon.com: The Good Witch Collection (The Good Witch's Garden / Good Witch's Gift / The Good Witch's Family / The Good Witch's Charm) (Hallmark): Catherine Bell, Craig Pryce: Movies & TV". Retrieved 1 May 2016.
  5. ^ Hallmark Channel Press Release 12/8/2008[dead link]
  6. ^ The Good Witch's Garden Archived March 23, 2014, at the Wayback Machine at Hallmark
  7. ^ "Breaking News - Hallmark Channel 2010 Fall TV Preview - TheFutonCritic.com". Retrieved 1 May 2016.
  8. ^ "Breaking News - Catherine Bell and Chris Potter Reteam for the Spell-Binding Seventh Installment in "The Good Witch" Series - TheFutonCritic.com". Retrieved 1 May 2016.
  9. ^ Hallmark Channel's Good Witch Movies To Spawn Drama Series Starring Catherine Bell
  10. ^ Join Us Saturday, February 28 8/7c for the Two-Hour World Premiere Event of Good Witch, A Hallmark Channel Original Primetime Series
  11. ^ a b James Denton to Star in Hallmark Channel's 'The Good Witch' Archived October 27, 2014, at the Wayback Machine
  12. ^ "Details". Retrieved 1 May 2016.
  13. ^ According to his Instagram, his twitter and IMDB, James Swalm and James Rittinger are the same person, with "Rittinger" being his middle name.

External links[edit]