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A Waltons Thanksgiving - What We Know So Far

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In 1971, viewers across the country got introduced to "The Waltons," a memorable family struggling to make it in Depression-era rural Virginia. The television film "The Homecoming: A Christmas Story" premiered and brought with it a heartwarming story that resonated with so many. "The Homecoming" began the lengthy and award-winning run of "The Waltons," television series from 1972 to 1981. Audiences couldn't get enough of budding author John-Boy Walton (Richard Thomas) and the rest of the Walton clan. The show proved so popular that during the '70s, we would have regularly heard the ending phrase, "Goodnight, John-Boy," uttered nearly anywhere by fans (via BBC Radio 4).

After the series ended, besides the occasional reunion movies, the Waltons took a break from television. That all changed with its 50th anniversary in 2021. The CW brought the family back with "The Waltons: Homecoming, " a modern retelling of the first television movie that began the entire franchise. And it appears that last year's reintroduction wasn't a one-off appearance. The CW is bringing the Waltons back again this year with "A Waltons Thanksgiving." Here's everything we know so far about the upcoming movie.

What is the plot of A Waltons Thanksgiving?

2021's "The Waltons: Homecoming" is a Christmas-themed film told from the perspective of John-Boy. With Christmas around the corner, the family becomes worried as it appears John Walton Sr. might miss out on spending the holidays at home due to a snowstorm. As a result, on Christmas Eve, John Boy ventures on a life-altering journey to find his father and bring him home. As the title suggests, "A Waltons Thanksgiving" will follow the previous film in having a story set against the backdrop of a significant holiday. However, the official synopsis via Variety reveals the added twist of the family celebrating together during the Great Depression and a mysterious young boy somehow forever changing the family.

Per Deadline, in "A Waltons Thanksgiving," the family prepares for Thanksgiving together and some country fair fun. John Walton Sr. has tried to take care of his family through work on the family farm and some outside work. Meanwhile, we should see the rest of the family engage in carnival games and rides while also learning some valuable life lessons at the Annual Harvest Festival Fair. Thematically, "A Waltons Thanksgiving" should mirror that of its recent predecessor, "The Waltons: Homecoming," as well as much of the entire franchise.

Who is starring in A Waltons Thanksgiving?

"A Waltons Thanksgiving" will include many returning lead roles from "The Waltons: Homecoming." Per TV Insider, "A Waltons Thanksgiving" will once again star Teddy Sears as John Walton Sr., Bellamy Young as Olivia Walton, Rebecca Koon as Grandma Walton, and Logan Shroyer as John Boy. In addition, the television movie will also have Christian Finlayson, Tatum Matthews, Samuel Goergen, Calloway Corrick, and Alpha Trivette rounding out the rest of the Walton family. Marilyn McCoo and Billy Davis Jr., both formerly with the iconic pop/R&B vocal group The Fifth Dimension, are also set to guest star.

Richard Thomas, who played John Boy in the original "Waltons" series, is again returning in "A Waltons Thanksgiving" as the narrator. Thomas' inclusion in the revival of "The Waltons" is an excellent callback to the original cast. Yet if executive producer Sam Haskell if has his wish, more of Thomas' original castmates could join him in the CW's version. Haskell told Deadline, I want to bring every original cast member in as a guest — to play a teacher or a nurse or a doctor. I want to integrate the original cast into the series and future movies." So fans should probably keep their eyes peeled for other surprise guests in "A Waltons Thanksgiving."

What's the release date for A Waltons Thanksgiving?

Earlier in May 2022, The CW announced their plans to release "A Waltons Thanksgiving" sometime during the fourth quarter of 2022, according to Variety. But recently, the network finally provided a specific date. Mark those calendars and find some family time around the television away from that hectic holiday shopping. Per TV Insider, "A Waltons Thanksgiving" is scheduled to premiere on November 20, 2022. It is similar to the schedule for last year's "The Waltons: Homecoming," as that movie came out on November 28, 2021. "The Waltons" has the winning recipe for cozy family viewing, but there is a more technical reason why The CW regards November as that magic month.

Per Deadline, "The Waltons: Homecoming" was the second most watched special for the network's 2021-2022 season. So, The CW hopes to repeat that type of success this year. Depending on how "A Waltons Thanksgiving" fares, we could be looking at an annual holiday release for future projects. The fact that "The Waltons: Homecoming" was a popular hit is a testament to the surprising longevity of the franchise. Thomas may have said it best when he told the Associated Press, "It's kind of astonishing that we're still talking about a show 50 years later."

Where to watch The Waltons: Homecoming?

"A Waltons Thanksgiving" is meant to be a direct follow-up to "The Waltons: Homecoming." It's essentially "The Waltons" for a new generation, featuring new actors in the familiar roles of established characters. November is still some months away, so there's plenty of time for anyone who wants to catch up on this family return by watching "The Waltons Homecoming." Although it premiered as a special television event, a few great paid options are available for "The Waltons Homecoming." The best option may be streaming the movie on Amazon Prime

If you prefer another streaming option other than Amazon, there are other available avenues. However, you can still expect to pay a small price. "The Waltons Homecoming" is also on YouTube, Google Play, and Vudu. Last year, The CW featured "The Waltons Homecoming" on their site for free at least a day after its premiere date. But it appears that they've currently taken it off. But, you may want to keep a close eye on their site as we get closer to the showing of "A Waltons Thanksgiving." The CW could feature the previous film once again to get fans ready.