Tag Archives: Amber Marshall

Links: Heartland, Season 14

From Eric Volmers of Postmedia News:

Link: Amber Marshall opens up about the heartbreaking season opener of Heartland
“I understood the journey he was on and that nobody should stand in the way of someone who wants to pursue what their true heart’s desire is.” Continue reading.

From CBC:

Link: Graham Wardle’s Message to Fans
Here is in an exclusive interview with Graham as he discusses his appreciation for the fans, his love of the show, and why he felt it was time to move on. Continue reading.

From Leora Heilbronn of Brief Take:

Link: Interview: Heartland’s Amber Marshall
Heartland season 14 begins on CBC with its biggest season opener yet. Continue reading.


Heartland: Amber Marshall addresses Season 14’s emotional return

[Spoiler alert: Do not continue reading until you have watched the Season 14 episode, “Keep Me in Your Heart.”]

Midway through last fall, TV, Eh? began getting emails. There were rumours among Heartland fans that Ty Borden (Graham Wardle) would not return to the show. We the rumours true, those emails asked? I don’t like rumours, so I didn’t address them. Instead, I let the Season 14 premiere of Heartland speak for itself.

And, sadly, as those rumours were true. On Sunday night, viewers learned that Ty succumbed to the gunshot injury he received in Season 13. “Keep Me in Your Heart” was an emotional hour with a memorial for Ty as its centrepiece, a year-later goodbye for the characters that was truly emotional. Here, Amber Marshall answers our questions about Ty’s death and what it means for Amy and the rest of the family moving forward.

Congratulations on Season 14 of Heartland. Can you believe it’s been 14 seasons already?
Amber Marshall: It seems like only yesterday we were all meeting for the first time. The beautiful thing is the excitement we all shared to be a part of that first season, is still strong over a decade later. We genuinely love and respect one another. The cast and crew have remained close and all have each other’s best interests in mind.

COVID-19 threw a wrench in everyone’s lives. How difficult was it for you and the Heartland family to adapt to filming during the pandemic?
AM: Being such a close and social workplace, it took a while to become consistent with a new routine. We are a group that hugs when we meet in the morning and when we leave at the end of the day. We spend many hours on set in close quarters and typically in between scenes and setups we usually all huddle together and run lines, or chat socially. This all had to change in season 14 to allow for COVID protocol to be followed. Lunches were now spent alone in our trailers or vehicles and any time we had in between setups or scenes was usually spent the same way. In some ways it allowed me to get more ‘homework’ done during the day, but the social side of Heartland looked very different.

Sunday’s episode revealed that, unfortunately, Ty developed complications and passed away. As a cast member and friend of Graham’s, how hard has it been to not have him around on-set?
AM: The story of Amy and Ty has been very prominent since Heartland’s beginning. Graham and I have had many beautiful stories on Heartland over the years and have remained very close friends off-set as well. This year was a strange new reality on all fronts. In a way, the longevity of the Amy and Ty story gave me inspiration as an actor to be able to feel the grief and sorrow of losing that character. Graham and I still spoke often throughout the season and I was able to visit him recently as well.

What would you say to fans who are upset Ty is no longer on the show? He and Amy have been the centrepiece of this show since Day 1.
There are things in our lives we can never prepare for. And when something devastating happens it feels as though our world is ripped apart and could never be put back together. I know fans of the show will be deeply saddened by the loss of Ty and I hope that they can join Amy and the Heartland family during this season of healing. There will always be events in our life that are out of our control and upset us. Instead of attacking them, or shutting down, we experience the most growth when we remain open and understanding.

When we pick up with the new season, a year has gone by. How do you feel about the time jump?
AM: Heartland was supposed to begin filming Season 14 in April of 2020. At that time the scripts were written to be six months after Ty’s passing. When the pandemic caused us to push our start until September is was a beautiful thing for our story. Now, instead of ‘six months later’ we have a more powerful story of a whole year passing. I believe this added immensely to the journey of our characters. The memorial on the one-year anniversary of his death was so much stronger than if it was only six months later. Also, the seasons and backdrop to the stage we were setting was far more tailored to the events. To me, the colder climate and fall/winter landscapes make the audience feel the grief so much deeper than a spring/summer backdrop.

Ty leaves a huge hole in the family. How will Amy adapt to this new life, especially being a single mother?
AM: Amy is no stranger to loss. The series begins with the death of her mother and her journey forward down a new road which she must travel without Marion. It is the horses that have always grounded Amy and as she works to heal their traumas, they, in turn, heal her. When Amy loses Ty, she goes through a wide range of emotions. She is numb to it for many months, then has strong guilt for not doing more to prevent it. With Jack’s help and understanding, she accepts that it was out of her control and the best way to honour Ty is to move forward and be present for their daughter. Amy leans on what has always comforted her in times of sorrow: horses. She includes her daughter in this form of healing and together they share some beautiful moments.

What can fans expect from the new season of the show?
AM: As always, be prepared to laugh, cry and maybe throw something at your TV – perhaps all at the same time! This season is undoubtedly an emotional one, but the strength of the Heartland family coming together and the beauty of the cinematography brings so much to the hearts of the viewers who join us on this journey.

Heartland airs Sundays at 7 p.m. on CBC.

Images courtesy of Michelle Faye Fraser for Rescued Horse Season Fourteen Inc.


CBC’s family drama Heartland heads into shorter Season 12

For Heartland fans, the most obvious change for Season 12 is the episode count. We’re so used to 18 episodes of life on the Heartland ranch that it’s been a shock to wait until January for new stories contained in just 11 episodes.

That change affected the actors, writers and producers as well. But, as stars Amber Marshall and Graham Wardle told me, it meant a tightening up of storylines and the strongest possible tales involving Amy (Marshall), Ty (Wardle), Tim (Chris Potter), Jack (Shaun Johnston), Lou (Michelle Morgan) and Georgie (Alisha Newton). We spoke to the pair during CBC’s winter media day back in November.

What were your initial thoughts on finding out this season of Heartland was going to be 11 episodes instead of 18?
Amber Marshall: I know that it really sent our writers scrambling. Our showrunner, Heather [Conkie], is very meticulous and she likes to have everything set out far in advance. She had said, ‘I’ve always arced for 18 episodes. I don’t even know how to arc this show for 11.’ For her, she’s like, ‘How do I even tell all those stories in 11 episodes?’ I think that, in the beginning, it sent everybody, especially our writing department, into a bit of a frenzy trying to think, ‘OK, how do I keep these stories great, and start and end a season with a nice arc, but in a much shorter amount of time?’

In a way, I think it was really great for our creative team because it allowed them to think outside of the box and also pick and choose the best episodes that they would have had in 18 episodes and compress them into 11 because they had already arced for 18. They had already figured out what they wanted to do over an 18-episode season and pick and choose what they wanted to bring into 11 episodes.

Graham Wardle: It’s like there’s more refinement. I hope that it shows up on-screen that there are more improvements and there are richer and deeper stories.

I’ve seen the first episode, and, obviously, the biggest change is Tim’s hair.
AM: It was so funny when the first photos were posted of him this year on social media. A lot of people were saying, ‘Who’s the new character?’ Some people didn’t even recognize him. It’s funny how much of a difference just a small change like that can be.

In the first episode, Amy, Ty and Lyndy go on a road trip. Talk about the journey that these two are on this season. Obviously, with a baby, there are a lot of changes, logistically, just behind the scenes, but story-wise, where do these two go now that there’s a baby, and do they want to upgrade? Do they want to move out, because there was talk about that, too?
GW: That’s right.

And this husband that keeps taking off and going to Mongolia and upsetting every fan on Heartland.
GW: No worries. No Mongolia.

AM: I think we’ve sorted that out.

What can you say about these new parents this season?
AM: I think that this really resonates with people that try to raise a toddler in a small home. A lot of people do it, and just living and experiencing the stories that we have on the show, I don’t know how anyone could ever do that, but I think that it’s something that it brings a little bit of comedy into it, as well as showing the struggle and being able to just overcome all of that as parents and as a family, and we’re so lucky with those twin girls who play Lyndy because they really capture the essence of a toddler, and I love seeing the joy that they have on set and different things. There’ll be scripted things for them to do, and maybe they don’t want to do that that day, so we’ll switch it up. We’ll try something else.

The great thing about these girls is they’re at the age where they love to mimic, so a lot of times, if there’s something going on, I’ll mention just before ‘Action,’ ‘Look at the puppy,’ and then ‘Action,’ and they’re like, ‘Puppy, puppy, puppy.’ They love the horses, and they love puppies and all of those things that I think, for our audience watching, is fun. They want to see these kids having fun on screen.

GW: [Ty and Amy are] starting to work together in Season 12, and they have to take on that responsibility and what that means. They’re both involved together, and they’re raising a family. I think, in many ways, we drew from our experiences of both trying to work with this baby and make these things work, and that, too, plays together in the relationship with the characters.

It says in the press materials that this is a season of change and upheaval and that everybody faces that, even Jack, and I always think of Jack as the rock. When everything else is going wrong in everybody’s world, he’s the guy that you can rely on. 
AM: Jack, I think, goes through some emotional experiences that he hasn’t really dealt with in the past, and he’s always been … I don’t want to say the lone soldier. You said, ‘the rock,’ which is great, but he’s always this symbol that stands just off-side and watches everybody and looks over everybody, and I think that shifts a little bit this year, and he still is very much that strong rock of the family, but he goes through his own emotional journey, as well.

Heartland airs Sundays at 7 p.m. on CBC and CBC Gem.

Images courtesy of CBC.Facebooktwitterredditlinkedinmail

Link: Heartland star Amber Marshall says working with a baby is fresh new challenge

From Joe Belanger of The London Free Press:

Link: Heartland star Amber Marshall says working with a baby is fresh new challenge
Having a baby is a life-changing event for new parents.

Having a baby in the pretend world of television brings its own challenges, as London’s Amber Marshall is discovering in the record 11th season of CBC’s hit hour-long drama Heartland. Continue reading. 



Preview: Dates and goodbyes on Heartland

“We’re all going to be OK.” That’s the final line spoken by Georgie in tonight’s new episode of Heartland, and summarizes another week’s storylines fluctuating between funny and infuriating, and tender and tear-filled.

“Reckless Abandon” digs deep into relationships between humans and other humans, horses and humans and horses with other horses. After a couple of weeks of hints, it looks as though Bear is going to fulfill his promising role in the Calgary Police’s mounted unit … and Georgie isn’t happy about it. Georgie, never one to sit back and think things through, allows the possibility Bear might leave to impact her relationship with Amy. Not helping matters? Some bad news from Stephen.


Relationship issues extend to Casey and Tim as well. Tim isn’t the best when it comes to voicing his feelings, and puts his foot in it with Casey, leading to some awkward moments and a possible future that scares the heck out of Tim.

Most Awkward Award of the night, however, goes to Lou. Her attempt to get back into the dating pool with house inspector Carson (Michael Xavier) leads to some laugh-out-loud moments followed by a cringe-inducing situation and Lou jumping to conclusions.

Heartland airs Sundays at 7 p.m. on CBC.Facebooktwitterredditlinkedinmail