Lori Loughlin played the role of Abigail Stanton on When Calls the Heart. She initially planned to help out with the TV movie, but ended up becoming a series regular before her departure. Many fans wonder if Loughlin could return (producer Brian Bird hints that it’s possible). In this interview, she looks back on her time as a central When Calls the Heart cast member.
How did Lori Loughlin get involved with When Calls the Heart?
Producer Brad Krevoy asked me to do one day of work on the WHen Calls the Heart movie. He said there was potential for it to get picked up as a series. So I guess the movie was a back door pilot so to speak. When they got the pick up he offered me the role as a series regular.
Did Lori Loughlin’s parents support her desire to be a child actress?
I’ve wanted to be an actress since I was five years old. My folks thought it was just a kid talking and that I’d outgrow the desire. Needless to say I didn’t outgrow it. When I was 11 years old I attended an open call at a modeling agency and they took me on the spot. That was my gateway in to the entertainment business.
My parents were of course instrumental in those early years. Without their help I wouldn’t have realized my dream.
How are fan reactions different today than in the 1980s?
I’ve always had a nice fan base throughout my career. I think now with social media you get to connect with your fans on a more personal level. It’s the one thing I love about Twitter, Instagram & Facebook.
What does the support of #Hearties mean to Lori Loughlin?
“When Calls the Heart” has an incredible fan base who created the hashtag #Hearties during season one. Their support means the world to us. Without fans you don’t have viewers and without viewers you don’t have a show.
The Hearties have been instrumental in spreading the word to others about “When Calls the Heart.” We couldn’t ask for a better marketing/ publicity team to support us. They’re the best!
Does Lori Loughlin ever get nervous?
I don’t typically get nervous on set or when I’m working with people. However, when I did a guest spot on Blue Bloods, I definitely had some butterflies working with Tom Selleck! He was fantastic and put me right at ease.
I’m not sure if people are nervous about working with me. If they are I’m sure it passes quickly. I’m very friendly and easygoing. Especially on set.
Why does Why Calls the Heart resonate with so many viewers?
It’s hard for me to put in to words why “When Calls the Heart” is so successful. I can only say that there is something about our show and its message that resonates so deeply with the fans. It’s moving to see and hear how much the show touches them.
Do real-life friendship impact the chemistry viewers see between When Calls the Heart actors?
One hundred percent. I believe the chemistry and love that a cast has for each other is palpable to the viewer.
And I think it definitely contributes to the success of a show. People at home pick up on the energy and they find themselves wanting to sit down and spend time with those characters.
Does Lori Loughin think Abigail ever gets lonely as a widowed single mother?
I believe Abigail practices what she preaches. She feels blessed to have Cody and Becky in her life. And I think the greatest gift she’s been given is her friendship with Elizabeth.
If she ever feels lonely I think it passes quickly once she takes inventory of all the good that has come in to her life.
What is an aspect of Abigail’s character that Lori Loughlin would like to better emulate?
Patience. She has an endless amount of patience. I’m patient but not to the same degree 😉
Tell us about the costumes on When Calls the Heart.
I love the costumes on our show and Barbara Gregusova does a phenomenal job. Yes, putting on the costume definitely helps to transport you back in time. My costumes are comfortable because I don’t wear a corset.
The one thing I do miss from season one are the hats. I’d love it if we could add some back here and there.
Julie Ridings (Texas, USA) asks: What inspires Lori Loughlin to continue acting and how do she feel about her children becoming actors?
Quite simply I continue to act because I LOVE it! As far as my children, I want them to be happy and find their passion. If that happens to be acting then so be it. I’ve certainly made them aware of the pitfalls and rejection. But if that’s their destiny then they have my support.
Life is short, fight to make your dreams come true.