Andie MacDowell’s new Hallmark series, The Way Home, strikes a chord for anyone looking to get back to their roots. It’s a time-travel drama (the show flips back and forth between 1999 and the present, thanks to a magical pond) about a family who was rocked by a tragedy over two decades ago. Now, three generations of women are taking a journey to heal that trauma, and not only do they find a way back to each other, but also to their true authentic selves.
MacDowell tells SheKnows that she loves the idea of playing Del Landry, the grandmother she describes as an “earthy woman” who “cares about her community,” but who has so many layers of tragedy — it’s “the complexity of the whole story” that made her say yes to the project. “I love the idea of being on the farm. I envisioned it was like the life I want to be living without the pain,” the 64-year-old actress jokes, “But the deeper I got into it, and I saw the complexity of the whole story of what happens with her daughter, the loss of her son, the loss of her husband, all of this terrible history that she’s been through, and the opportunity to finally meet her granddaughter… I love that.”
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The show also teases a romance for Del, which is a storyline that is often overlooked by writers — yes, women in their 60s do have love, sex, and relationships (and they can be complicated). “I was working with the writers a lot about how I felt about this because I think it’s much harder for Del,” MacDowell explains. “This person has lost the love of her life. How do you find that again? This is a person who’s cut that part off, so I’m hoping that we come back, and we continue to explore this.” So while she loves the idea of her character finding her way back to love, she wants it to happen in an organic way.
“I just think it has to happen in a way that I believe. It’s not like when you’re young and that whole part of yourself is completely open. When you’re older, it’s a little bit more complicated. I think that love is a really hard sell for someone who has struggled and been through so much pain. That’s my experience at least,” she says.
One area of her personal life that isn’t “a hard sell” is being a mom to her three adult children, Margaret, 28, Rainey, 32, and Justin, 37, from her first marriage to Paul Qualley, and grandmother to Justin’s daughter. MacDowell cherishes her maternal role so much that if she could travel to the 1990s like Del, she says she would “go back and spend time with my children over again.” She continues, “I always tell people, enjoy every minute because you won’t believe how fast it goes by. You’ll be pining for it once it’s gone, I share that with mothers all the time.”
However, MacDowell isn’t “pining” away for the days of dying her hair to keep the grays at bay. During the lockdown period of the pandemic, she let her gorgeous brunette color morph into stunning silver locks — and she’s not looking to turn back time. The Hallmark star has been turning heads on the red carpet over the past year for showing off her dazzling gray curls to much applause from her fans, which has allowed her to lean right into the conversation of aging. She shares, “I’m much more comfortable. I think it suits me. It feels correct for me. For instance, I’ll be walking through the airport now and these people will say, ‘You look great.’ I know they’re talking like they really appreciate me being my age, fearlessly being my age.”
If that didn’t feel empowering enough, MacDowell then doubles down on how she loves this season of life. “I think there’s such a fear of age that particularly for women, not so much for men. I want people to contemplate that age is something to be admired and revered and not shamed, there shouldn’t be any shame to it, and we are beautiful as we get older,” she concludes. “That’s what I think.”
The Way Home airs on Sundays at 9/8c on the Hallmark Channel.
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