‘When Calls the Heart’: Chris McNally Almost Played Nathan — Not Lucas — on Hallmark Channel Drama

by Jeremy Spirogis
Chris McNally

Last season on When Calls the Heart, followers have been launched to 2 good-looking new residents of Hope Valley. First got here the dashing however mysterious Lucas Bouchard (Chris McNally), who bought the quaint burg’s saloon, renaming it the Queen of Hearts. Then, new mountie Nathan Grant (Kevin McGarry) rode into city. 

Both males have been positioned as a potential romantic curiosity for widowed schoolteacher Elizabeth Thornton (Erin Krakow). She hasn’t made her alternative simply but, and with each guys possessing loads of allure, it’s onerous to foretell who will win her coronary heart. But if issues had gone a bit in a different way, we do know {that a} totally different actor may very well be taking part in the function of Nathan. 

Chris McNally auditioned for each Nathan and Lucas 

Chris McNally
Chris McNally | Paul Archuleta/Getty Images

Though he solely joined When Calls the Heart final season, Chris McNally’s Lucas has rapidly change into a favourite with followers. But what many Hearties doubtless don’t know is that McNally nearly performed a special character on the present. 

On Friday, Feb. 21, actor Chris McNally was a visitor on Hallmark Channel’s Bubbly Sesh podcast. He informed hosts Shawlini Manjunath-Holbrook and Jacklyn Collier that he initially auditioned for each Nathan and Lucas. 

“I auditioned for Nathan through my Canadian representation,” he mentioned. “I sent a tape. I was in LA at the time; I sent the tape to Canada. And I went in the room and auditioned for Lucas.” 

McNally didn’t precisely hit it out of the park in that in-person audition, he recalled. 

“I didn’t think it went very well at all,” he mentioned. “It was one of those ones where you leave going, ‘Man, I really screwed that one up. I wish I could roll back the clock and try again.’”

He felt he had extra of an opportunity of touchdown the function of Nathan 

Though McNally wasn’t thrilled with the way in which his first audition for Lucas went, he felt higher about his probabilities of touchdown the function of Nathan. After reviewing his tape, the actor was invited to do a learn with Krakow to guage the pair’s chemistry. 

After making an attempt out for the Nathan half, McNally says that the showrunners requested him to stay round and likewise learn once more for Lucas. 

“That time, I felt great about the read,” he mentioned. “I felt like I did what I wanted to do; what I should have done the first time.” 

The When Calls the Heart workforce clearly felt the identical means, since McNally ended up getting solid as Lucas. Now, it’s onerous to think about him because the straight-laced mountie Nathan. 

Lucas exhibits ‘a little more heart’ this season

During the podcast, McNally additionally talked about what viewers can count on to see from Lucas on this season of When Calls the Heart. 

“You can expect to see a little more heart,” he mentioned. “He definitely tries to go out on a limb and show Elizabeth how he feels. So there are a couple more grand gestures, similar to the one you saw in the Christmas episode.” 

In the 2019 Christmas particular, Lucas wowed Elizabeth — and the remainder of Hope Valley — with a vacation competition and beautiful mild show. It’s onerous to think about how he’ll prime that. Hearties will simply must tune in on Sunday, Feb. 23 at 8/7c to search out out what Lucas has up his sleeve when When Calls the Heart Season 7 premieres on Hallmark.

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