2020 may have been a year that saw a lot of uncertainty and turmoil, but one thing that has stayed the same is the lineup of brand-new holiday movies on both Hallmark Channel and Lifetime. With fans eagerly awaiting the much-needed respite from daily life that these films provide, the two networks have revealed the airdates and titles for each film they’re airing, but this year they are making things more diverse than ever before.

Both Hallmark and Lifetime are premiering films with a core of diverse leads and storylines, straying from their standard norms of films that typically only showed white heterosexual couples in the lead roles. This time, people of color and different nationalities will take the lead in several titles—and storylines will also reflect more diverse cultural and religious backgrounds as well.

Lifetime broke new ground with the announcement that they had cast real-life married couple Ben Lewis and Blake Lee to play the leads in their first Christmas romance film to feature a gay lead couple, “The Christmas Setup.” That came with the announcement of their first movie focusing on a Chinese-American family as well, “A Sugar & Spice Holiday,” starring Jacky Lai and Tony Giroux.

The network is also once again bringing interracial couples to the forefront with their films, a move that was made in the past with titles including “No Time Like Christmas” (Kyla Pratt and Ed Ruttle), “Christmas in Louisiana” (Jana Kramer and Percy Daggs III), “A Very Vintage Christmas” (Tia Mowry-Hardrict and Jesse Hutch), “My Christmas Inn” (Tia Mowry-Hardrict and Rob Mayes) and “Wrapped Up In Christmas” (Tatyana Ali and Brendan Fehr). This year’s titles featuring interracial couples will include “The Christmas Edition,” starring Carly Hughes and Rob Mayes, and “A Christmas Exchange,” starring Laura Vandervoort and Rainbow Sun Francks.

Hallmark is also bringing a gay couple to the forefront in their new lineup in “The Christmas House,” where Robert Buckley and Jonathan Bennett play brothers summoned home for Christmas. Bennett’s character is married to one played by Brad Harder, and the two are also involved in an adoption storyline as well.

The network will also once again be shedding some light on the Jewish holiday of Hanukkah, with a film starring Mia Kirshner and Ben Savage, titled “Love, Lights, Hanukkah!”

Both networks kick off their 24/7 holiday programming events on Oct. 23. The first new films of the season will air that night on Lifetime and on Oct. 24 on Hallmark channel respectively.

Hallmark and Lifetime Christmas 2020
Both Hallmark Channel and Lifetime are bringing diversity to the table in their 2020 Holiday programming. L: Hallmark Channel Facebook Page; R: Lifetime Facebook Page