Brad Harder Talks About “The Christmas House” and the NEW “The Christmas House 2: Deck Those Halls

By Kurt Schmierer

Holidays can have a different meaning for each family, whether that  is bringing family together for a time or how a family shows their spirit to a neighborhood and town. Traditions can make the holidays more than just a day off or the gifts given.

Last year one TV family wanted to relive a custom they shared with the town they lived in.  The Christmas House is one family’s tradition helping them to find their way in life as it inevitably changes.

Brad Harder plays the husband, Jake, to Jonathan Bennett’s Brandon, a young couple coming home for the holidays. The Christmas House is a long held family tradition where every room and every floor is turned into a Christmas wonderland for all ages. This year is full of change for all of the family. There is an adoption, house for sale, show cancellation and old flames rekindled.

As tradition goes I have watched this show now for the second year and am excited to see this year’s sequel called The Christmas House 2: Deck Those Halls available  on The Hallmark Channel.

Without spoilers let’s hear from actor Brad Harder to find out what it is like being part of seasonal history as the character of Jake in The Christmas House and The Christmas House 2: Deck Those Halls.

You have now been part of 2 Hallmark holiday specials that are a continuation of the story and evolution of the characters.  What is it like through the filter of a gay man being part of this?

It truly is an honor to be at the start of LGBTQ representation for hallmark. There’s so many unnecessary barrier for LGTBQ performers face when reading and playing different roles, and I’m so thankful Hallmark cast 2 gay men playing to play Jake and Brandon.

As a Husband and father, how do you view the show and its message for the holidays?

This is the type of family that I wish for all people in our community. That their sexual orientation isn’t even a thing. That they are a part of the family and their family support, loves and accepts them unconditionally. For me, in real life unfortunately this isn’t how my family is and for so many other gay couple, so this time of year can be hard. That’s why playing this character and telling this story is so important as it shows what is possible. For me as a parent, this is the type of family my husband and I are building and I envision for our future when our kids come home for the holidays.

I loved The Christmas House that came out last year. It was a wonderful story and very family friendly. What drew you to taking part with this show?

What drew me to it was to finally get to represent our community on hallmark and this family love for each other.

How much of Jake do you draw from real life or is he someone you want to be?

I drew quite a lot of myself in jake, but maybe Jake is a bit more grounded and calmer than I am myself. He’s definitely is someone I strive to be more so.

Without spoilers what is the biggest difference between The Christmas House and The Christmas House 2:Deck those Halls?

The first one is the first glimpse and picture of This family, and it’s sweet, cute and funny but it doesn’t get as deep and funny as the second one.

The Christmas House has a phenomenal cast. Can you tell us who you knew before being part of the show? After the first movie, The Christmas House, did you all stay close friends?

I didn’t know anyone of my cast mates before the movie. When we all met we started a group chat that has never stopped. This truly as become a family.

For The Christmas House 2: Deck those Halls, was it like coming home again?  Did anything feel different?

It  was just like coming home. It was surreal. The cast and most of the crew for the movie where the same which made it even more special. We were just all excited to see each other and it was aa if we hadn’t missed a beat.

This is a question for “Jake” , what is it about Brandon that drew you to him?

Brandon is a larger than life guy, he’s very charismatic, ambitious and the total ying to jakes yang. 

Behind the scenes there are always funny happenings or outlandish stories. Is there something you can share with us that happened on each of The Christmas Houses?

Jonathon and Rob kept trying to Sabotage each other’s diets by sending each other unhealthy …but tasty food simultaneously. This year I had broken my foot right before shooting so unfortunately not to many shenanigans. Of course Jonathan tried to carry me to brunch that ended quickly as he discovered I am fairly heavy hah. Last year Jonathon, Sharon and I did the mean girls Christmas dance and that was so fun and blew up online.

Do you have a favorite cast member of The Christmas House movies or maybe more diplomatically, what do you love about your castmates?

I LOVE each and every single one of these people and all for different reasons. We all compliment each other and have so much fun together. Jonathan is the most incredible movie husband. We connected immediately and had to much fun getting to know each other, and FaceTime our spouses together. He’s a friend I will have forever. We got to share this story and has deeply impacted us and our connection to the Christmas house.

Rob… he is just like my brothers, of course another Taurus. I’m so comfortable with him and love finding food to eat together. His heart is on his sleeve and I recognize and love that.

Ana…is a deep soul. I love nothing more than to connecting with someone at that level. Her integrity and authenticity is so important to her. I just feel connected to her as a human.

Treat, God I love him. His stories, his personality, having dinner with him We call each other to check in from time to time and nothing makes me happier.

Sharon is just an incredible person. How she holds herself, the actor she is just put me in awe all the time. She has a wonderful heart. I love doing ghost tours with her!!!

Now I just want to see them all and have dinner together or some adventure.

Who would “Jake” identify as his favorite?

Jake for sure loves Phylis & Bill. They are the grandparents!!! On top of being adored by both of them they love their grandkids and give Jake and Brandon much needed breaks.

As a father are there any special holiday traditions you share each year?

We are trying to establish our own traditions that are fun and special for us. Graham and I both love decorating our tree and so that’s something we did this year with Kael and next year Tegan will join.

Do you think The Christmas House will have a 3rd movie?

I hope so! We could do a movie learning to knit mittens for all I care it’d be hilarious.

If the opportunity arises, would you do another LGBTQ holiday show?

100% without question


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