(Update: “Project Christmas Joy” debuted on Tuesday, Dec. 10. It will be rebroadcast on Friday, Dec. 13 at 6 p.m.; Sunday, Dec. 15 at 9 a.m.; and lastly on Christmas Day at 8 p.m. Scroll to the bottom of this story for viewing information.)
The 2019 Millard Fuller Legacy Build that took place Sept. 29-Oct. 4 in tornado-ravaged Lee County, Alabama, was notable for many reasons — for the 11 new homes that rose quickly, for the hundreds of volunteers from the local area and from afar, and for the hope it brought to families who had been devastated by the March 3 EF-4 tornado.
Also notable was the touch of Hollywood provided by a film crew producing a special for Hallmark Drama about some of the families and others who helped make the project possible. Their work will be revealed on Tuesday, Dec. 10, in the one-hour special “Project Christmas Joy” that airs at 9 p.m. EST on the Hallmark Drama channel.
“The Hallmark Channel donated $150,000 to fund three of the houses, so they already played a huge role in the success of the build,” noted Fuller Center Vice President of Communications Chris Johnson, who assisted the film crew in setting up shots and interviews. “While this is sure to be an emotional special with a lot of focus on personal stories and on Hallmark’s generosity, it also will be a good showcase for The Fuller Center for Housing’s work. It won’t exactly be a promotional video, but these are Fuller Center homes, Fuller Center partner families, Fuller Center leaders and Fuller Center volunteers you’ll see in the special.”
Among Fuller Center leaders interviewed during the week were co-founder Linda Fuller and Kim Roberts, the Executive Director of the Chattahoochee Fuller Center Project, which coordinated The Fuller Center’s work in the community — work that has resulted in 18 new homes that now stand as symbols of resilience, hope and faith.
“It was an incredible week, and I know they came away with hours and hours of footage,” Johnson said. “It’ll be interesting to see what they will be able to fit into a one-hour show and what makes the cut. Obviously, some great stuff had to wind up on the cutting-room floor.
“I do know that the producers were very impressed with what they witnessed at the build and were very pleased with the results of their filming,” he added. “They were amazed by the progress made in just a few days as projects were transformed from skeletal frames to completed homes — especially considering that the work was being done in record-shattering heat all week. The producers were from Minnesota, and I’m pretty sure they left thinking that Lee County, Alabama might be the hottest place on Earth!”
Hallmark Drama is not carried by every cable provider, but you can check your local listings or enter your zip code at this Hallmark Drama channel locator page. On satellite, Hallmark Drama airs on DirectTV channel 564 and Dish channel 186. Click here to find out where you can find other services, such as Sling, that offer Hallmark Drama.
After the premiere at 9 p.m. EST on Tuesday, Dec. 10, the special will be rebroadcast on Friday, Dec. 13 at 6 p.m.; Sunday, Dec. 15 at 9 a.m.; and lastly on Christmas Day at 8 p.m.