As Tvbythenumbers noted earlier today, filming began in Vancouver this week for Christmas Bounty, WWE Studios' upcoming movie for ABC Family. Christmas Bounty will air in December as part of ABC Family's famous "25 Days of Christmas" event.
A high-profile Christmas TV movie is part of the network's tradition: The Mistle-Tones, 12 Days of Christmas and Christmas Cupid are previous examples.
The film stars Mike "The Miz" Mizanin, which explains his hasty Intercontinental title loss to Wade Barrett on Monday's Raw.
As the press release notes, the cast has been filled out, with Francia Raisa (from ABC Family's The Secret Life of The American Teenager), Will Greenberg (The Office) and Chelan Simmons (Malibu Shark Attack) starring alongside The Miz, who will play a bounty hunter.
The plot synopsis reads:
"Christmas Bounty” is an action-filled comedy about Tory (Raisa), a former bounty hunter turned elementary school teacher. Determined to have a normal life with her new fiancé, James (Greenburg), Tory would love to keep her bounty hunter past a secret. She reluctantly returns home for Christmas when a past bounty comes back for revenge. But when James follows her home for the holiday, she struggles to hide her wild family business and Mike (Mizanin), the bounty hunter ex-boyfriend she thought she’d left behind.
Admittedly, the plot is a tad ridiculous. Don't elementary schools do background checks on teachers? How would she even get hired with her past? But, then, it's not like ABC Family is known for its gritty, realistic programming.
Interestingly, it was noted in a profile from Variety earlier this week that Christmas Bounty is WWE Studios' way of appealing to the young female demographic, in stark contrast to many of its male-oriented action movies.
It also marks the first time the division has ever ventured into TV movies. On paper, it makes sense: It's less of a risk and doesn't rely on box office grosses. Presumably, WWE is getting the money up front, too.
Following the success of The Call and The Marine 3: Homefront last month, WWE Studios finds itself in an advantageous position in the film industry for the first time in years. Can it capitalize on this?