Teri Polo On Her Movie 'The Christmas Shepherd'

The actress shares how her Hallmark holiday film is all about second chances

Posted in , Nov 20, 2014

Teri Polo in her new movie A Christmas Shepherd

Love comes at the most unexpected times. That couldn’t be more true in Hallmark’s latest holiday film, The Christmas Shepherd. The next movie in the network’s Countdown to Christmas series stars The Fosters’ Teri Polo as a widower given a second chance at romance thanks to one very special dog.

Polo plays Sally Brown, a children’s book author who lost her husband, an Army Staff Sergeant, only a few years earlier. Before he died, Sergeant Brown returned home with a special package: a stray German Shepherd named Buddy he’d found wondering outside of his barracks while stationed in Afghanistan. With her son also fighting overseas and her husband gone, Buddy becomes Brown’s sole companion, but after a storm causes the pup to run away from home, he ends up being adopted by another family, a father and daughter going through a loss of their own. Polo says the story of Buddy and how he ultimately brings three people in need of healing together for the holidays is a great life lesson for us all.

“Things happen for a reason,” Polo told Guideposts.org about the film. “Even when you’ve been down and heartbroken and you feel as if you can never love again, you’re going to learn an amazing lesson. You can’t bury yourself and not live.”

Polo is a firm believer in second chances and fresh starts. The actress’s art seems to imitate her life in a way.  Mother to son Griffin and daughter Bayley, the Polo is a huge animal lover who doesn’t mind admitting her house could double as a rescue center for seemingly lost causes. “On any given day there’s any number of dogs at my house, which drives my son insane,” (her son is a cat person she later explains). She says, “I’m rescuing dogs left and right.”

Polo’s love for man’s best friend was one thing that drew her to making another movie with Hallmark. The actress, who starred in one of the network's highest-rated shows, Straight from the Heart, says the opportunity to make a feel-good movie for the holiday season was something she couldn’t pass up.

“You watch the news and you look at some of the television shows and you see some of the movies out there; things are apocalyptic and things are so bad. It’s not to say that I think we need to ignore reality but I think that the more positivity we put out in the world the more we’ll get back,” Polo said. “It’s about love, generosity, positivity, caring and forgiveness and Hallmark tries their best to do that and to show the human condition. Their Christmas movies tend to be very uplifting and warm and they make you want to sit by the fire and cuddle with somebody and have hot coca. It’s a good feeling, it’s a good thing.”

The Christmas Shepherd airs at various times throughout November and December on Hallmark Movies and Mysteries. Check your local listings.

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