‘Holiday in Santa Fe,’ starring Mario Lopez, set to air on Lifetime on Dec. 10 - Albuquerque Journal

‘Holiday in Santa Fe,’ starring Mario Lopez, set to air on Lifetime on Dec. 10

Mario Lopez stars as Tony in the film, “Holiday in Santa Fe.” (Courtesy of Mark Roberts)

Santa Fe is ready for its holiday close up.

In April, production on the Lifetime film, “Holiday in Santa Fe” was taking place.

At 6 p.m. Friday, Dec. 10, the film starring Mario Lopez, Emeraude Toubia and Aimee Garcia will premiere on Lifetime. It will also air again at 10 p.m. Friday, Dec. 10.

Mark Roberts served as producer, alongside Lopez, for the film.

Roberts says it was the film given the green light from the Lifetime.

“This film is a mixture of American culture as well as Mexican culture,” Roberts says. “We want to tell stories that speak to a bigger audience by not leaning into the culture that people just don’t understand.”

“Holiday in Santa Fe” tells the story of a family-owned business, Casa de Milagro, dreamed up by matriarch Milagro, and her beloved husband Manuel Ortega.

Emeraude Toubia as Belinda Sawyer and Mario Lopez as Tony in a scene from Holiday in Santa Fe. (Courtesy of Mark Roberts)

Together the tight-knit family creates ornaments and decorations inspired by Mexican Christmas traditions. The award-winning creations have become collectors’ items and the unique pieces are highly sought after each holiday season. Siblings Tony, played by Lopez and Magdalena, played by Garcia, help run the shop in Santa Fe, but when Milagro unexpectedly dies, the family struggles to find its heart.

Enter Belinda Sawyer, played by Toubia, an executive at Warm Wishes Inc., which is one of the largest greeting card/holiday décor chains in the United States.

Warm Wishes has had its eye on the Milagro company for a sometime and sees an opportunity.

As Tony fights for the future of the company, Belinda comes into town set on acquiring Casa de Milagro, but when she meets Tony, sparks fly, and she realizes that there is more to Casa de Milagro than meets the eye.

The film is written by Cristela Alonzo.

During the month of filming in Santa Fe, Marks and the cast and crew were able to see a lot of Santa Fe — and New Mexico.

“We enjoyed staying at the Drury and the crews were going out and traveling to Taos and the places around here,” he says. “The museums are great. It’s been a beautiful experience. I think that’s one of the greatest things about filmmaking is that you go in and sort of take over a town and you learn about that town. You make a movie and it becomes the backdrop of your movie. It’s been fun to do it in Santa Fe.”

Downtown Santa Fe was used heavily for the film, “Holiday in Santa Fe.” (Courtesy of Mark Roberts)

Marks says the film was planned purposely to be filmed around the Plaza.

“The majority of where we shot was within walking distance of the town square,” he says. “Mario and myself planned it that way so we would be able to streamline production.”

According to the New Mexico Film Office, the production employed approximately 20 New Mexico crew members and 50 New Mexico background talent.

SEND ME YOUR TIPS: If you know of a movie filming in the state, or are curious about one, email film@ABQjournal.com. Follow me on Twitter @agomezART.

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