Color My World With Love is a 2022 Hallmark original movie starring Lily D. Moore and David DeSanctis. It’s a romantic drama about a young artist named Kendall (Moore) who starts tutoring Jeremy (DeSanctis), a talented pianist with Down syndrome. The movie follows their growing friendship as Kendall helps Jeremy prepare for an important recital while also encouraging him to pursue romantic relationships.
The movie opens with Kendall struggling to start her art career after graduating from college. She takes a part-time job at a nonprofit arts center for people with disabilities called Creative Paths. There, she meets Jeremy, who is preparing to play at an upcoming charity benefit. Jeremy clearly has romantic feelings for Kendall, but she kindly explains that they can only be friends.
Kendall starts helping Jeremy practice piano and build confidence for his performance. Meanwhile, she meets a potential love interest named Adam (Benjamin Ayres), who works at the local aquarium. Kendall and Adam start dating, while she continues supporting Jeremy’s artistic dreams.
As the recital approaches, Jeremy becomes anxious and overwhelmed. Kendall helps him manage his emotions and remember his love for music. On the night of the performance, Jeremy wows the crowd with his piano skills. Kendall is thrilled to see her new friend succeeding.
After the recital, Jeremy musters the courage to ask a female friend named Amy (Emma Oliver) to dance. Kendall is touched to see Jeremy taking a chance on romance, thanks to the new confidence she helped instill in him.
While Kendall’s relationship with Adam is going well, she realizes she has more fulfilling chemistry with Jeremy. She breaks things off with Adam and tells Jeremy she has romantic feelings for him too. The movie ends with Kendall and Jeremy sharing a sweet first kiss.
Here are the main cast members of Color My World With Love:
- Lily D. Moore as Kendall
- David DeSanctis as Jeremy
- Benjamin Ayres as Adam
- Emma Oliver as Amy
Lily D. Moore is best known for her roles in the TV series Find Me in Paris and Spinning Out. This was her first starring role in a Hallmark movie.
David DeSanctis is an actor with Down syndrome who previously appeared in the movies Where Hope Grows and Atypical. Color My World With Love marked his first leading role.
Behind the Scenes
Here are some interesting details about the making of Color My World With Love:
- The movie was filmed in Ontario, Canada.
- David DeSanctis did all his own piano playing in the film.
- Lily D. Moore and David DeSanctis took piano lessons together before filming started.
- The aquarium scenes were filmed at Ripley’s Aquarium in Toronto.
- Benjamin Ayres and Lily D. Moore previously co-starred together in the Hallmark movie Christmas Ayres.
In interviews, Lily D. Moore said she hoped the movie would help break down barriers regarding casting people with disabilities. She said she loved working with David DeSanctis and praised his extraordinary talents.
Color My World With Love premiered on Hallmark Channel on January 21, 2022. It earned strong ratings, with 1.7 million total viewers during its debut.
The movie received largely positive reviews. Critics praised the lead actors’ performances and chemistry. Many also commended Hallmark for telling a more inclusive story featuring a main character with Down syndrome.
Here is a summary of the response from critics:
|Common Sense Media
|“Heartwarming romantic drama sends positive messages about disabilities.”
|Parents via TV Guide
|“Both Moore and DeSanctis shine in this sweet, fulfilling story.”
|“Realistic and thoughtful. The two leads have an undeniable connection.”
Many viewers took to social media to praise the movie’s inclusiveness. On Twitter, multiple people thanked Hallmark for showcasing actors with disabilities in leading roles.
Impact and Legacy
Color My World With Love made several meaningful impacts:
- It presented a character with Down syndrome as a romantic lead, which is extremely rare in mainstream film and TV.
- It highlighted the talents and abilities of people with developmental disabilities.
- It spread awareness to Hallmark’s large audience about dating and relationships among people with disabilities.
- It indicated progress in casting more inclusively in family-friendly programming.
The film’s success proved that audiences respond positively to well-crafted stories featuring disabled leads. Its legacy will hopefully be opening more acting opportunities for performers with disabilities.
Discussion and Analysis
Color My World With Love offered nuance that’s often lacking in portrayals of people with disabilities onscreen. Here are some key points:
- Jeremy was depicted as worthy of finding romantic love, which sends an empowering message to viewers with disabilities.
- Kendall only saw Jeremy’s Down syndrome at first, but learned to focus on his personality and talents.
- Jeremy had relatable goals like any young adult – pursuing his career passions and dating.
- The story realistically showed Jeremy needing support at times but still being highly independent.
- The film didn’t overly dwell on Jeremy’s disability. It emphasized his abilities and relationship growth.
There were a few potentially problematic aspects, like Kendall having to reject Jeremy’s initial overtures. But overall, the movie struck an admirable balance in presenting Jeremy as a well-rounded romantic hero.
Hallmark is known for formulaic storytelling, so Color My World With Love represented a major step forward in terms of diverse representation. It demonstrated that characters with disabilities can carry entertaining romantic films just as capably as anyone else.
Color My World With Love delivered a thoughtfully crafted story of friendship and romance, distinguished by its disabled lead character. Lily D. Moore and David DeSanctis garnered well-deserved acclaim for their performances. The movie succeeded as a heartwarming romance while also making strides in onscreen representation. It provided a platform for the underutilized talents of performers with disabilities. The film will hopefully pave the way for even more inclusive storytelling across the entertainment industry. By depicting characters like Jeremy as fully realized romantic leads, Hallmark and other content creators have an opportunity to spread empowerment to disabled audiences.