Katie Cassidy teased that her A Royal Christmas Crush costar Stephen Huszar’s facial features convinced her to act alongside him — and later date in real life.
“Who doesn’t want [to] be swept off their feet by Prince Henry? Or Jawline. Prince Jawline,” Cassidy, 36, exclusively told Us Weekly while speaking about what drew her to playing Ava Jensen in Hallmark’s newest “Christmas in July” feature.
Cassidy noted that her A Royal Christmas Crush character’s career as an architect also drew her to the part. In the movie, Ava gets an opportunity to work at the Royal Ice Hotel, where she meets Prince Henry and finds her own happily ever after.
“She’s a boss. But I love that she had a past,” Cassidy explained while promoting the Saturday, July 8, release. “I love that she kind of rose above the fact of her past and her ex-husband. And she is sort of, like, on this new path. … I think that I loved that she was filled [and complex]. There was some substance there.”
Cassidy — who announced her real-life romance with Huszar, 39, via Instagram in June — added: “And I love a love story. It’s a very sweet, cute love story.”
Huszar, for his part, gushed to Us over his scene partner and revealed how Cassidy’s presence on set made the work even more fun. “We’re dealing with such an incredible actor here. For me it was such a gift to be able to work off someone who’s so present and has just so much to offer,” the Chesapeake Shores alum told Us during a joint interview. “I think there’s a lot of layers to the film.”
Huszar pointed out that the 2023 Hallmark rom-com is “very timely with a royal sort of twist to it as well” amid all the changes in the U.K. following the death of Queen Elizabeth II in September 2022.
“There’s so much pressure on the royals, especially with the handing off of the crown, but also with what’s going on with the princes,” he told Us, referring to King Charles III taking over the throne and his sons, Prince William and Prince Harry, being at odds over the past few years. “So, I think it’s just a good — I think people will be able to identify with it. It’s for the times really. I think that’s what differentiates it.” (Tension between William, 40, and Harry, 38, grew in January when Harry’s memoir, Spare, came out and slammed the royal family.)
Cassidy chimed in and called the project a “feel-good movie” that made her feel wonderful while filming. “[It] made me feel good too,” Huszar gushed. “[It’s] still making me feel good.”
In addition to finding love off camera — the twosome met in March while shooting the Hallmark romance — both Cassidy and Huszar were over the moon about working for Hallmark.
While the Arrow alum is new to the Hallmark family, Cassidy told Us she loved “the spirit” and how “light and loving” everyone was on set. “Everyone has each other’s back, I feel like,” she said. “Everyone is just wonderful.”
Huszar, who appeared his first Hallmark project in 2011, agreed with his girlfriend. “It really feels like family,” he told Us. “It’s always nice to work with people you’ve worked with before and that, as Katie says, has your back.”
A Royal Christmas Crush premieres on Hallmark Channel Saturday, July 8, at 8 p.m. ET.
Sign up for Us Weekly’s free, daily newsletter and never miss breaking news or exclusive stories about your favorite celebrities, TV shows and more!
With reporting by Kat Pettibone