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When Calls The Heart Season 9 - What We Know So Far

"When Calls the Heart" is a gentle, pleasing fare which is one part sweet romance and one part family historical drama, featuring a fish-out-of-water heroine and a bustling town filled with spunk and spirit. Think "Dr. Quinn: Medicine Woman" without the medicine.

Based on inspirational historical romance author Janette Oke's book of the same name, which spawned several sequel volumes, "When Calls the Heart" is a staple on the Hallmark Channel and one of its flagship original dramas. Featuring an ensemble cast of characters, the series is set in 1910, and follows neophyte teacher and former high society debutante Elizabeth Thatcher (Erin Krakow) as she tries to fit into life in a small Canadian mining town named Hope Valley. Bit by bit, Elizabeth adjusts to the lifestyle there and charms everyone she meets — except Royal North-West Mounted Police Constable Jack Thornton (Daniel Lissing), who has been assigned to watch over Elizabeth via influence applied by her rich daddy. 

The ambitious Jack is less than pleased with this development, setting up a love-hate relationship between the two of them that culminates in marriage which ends tragically when Jack dies offscreen in Season 5, leaving Elizabeth a widow with an infant son named after his father. This ultimately leads Elizabeth into a tumultuous and recently-resolved love triangle.

In case any of you Hearties were concerned about the show's future status, Hallmark recently renewed "When Calls the Heart" for a 9th season, via an announcement on the show's official website. When can you expect to see it, who will star in it, and what will it be about? Here's what we know so far.

Updated November 18, 2021: This article has been updated to include information regarding the completion of filming for "When Calls the Heart" Season 9, the confirmed returns of Erin Krakow, Chris McNally, Jack Wagner, Kevin McGarry, Andrea Brooks, Pascale Hutton, Kavan Smith, Natasha Burnett, Viv Leacock, and Paul Greene, as well as Lori Loughlin's involvement in "When Hope Calls" and rumors of a wedding between Elizabeth Thatcher and Lucas Bouchard.

When will When Calls The Heart Season 9 be released?

In 2020, "When Calls the Heart" was renewed for its 8th season, which was announced through a video featuring Erin Krakow on Hallmark's website. The announcement of Season 9 arrived in a similar fashion, giving us a frame of reference for when it could potentially premiere. Season 8's reveal came in April of 2020, and the 8th season debuted on February 21, 2021. So, a similar timeframe may presumably be in the cards for Season 9 given that its announcement came on May 9. 

A recent post from the actor behind Bill Avery, Jack Wagner, lent some credibility to this hypothesis. Despite the ever-changing nature of COVID-19 strictures at the show's Vancouver shooting locale, the "When Calls the Heart" mainstay reported via Instagram on November 9 that production on Season 9 is officially all wrapped up. Therefore, we can likely expect the next batch of "When Calls the Heart" episodes to arrive on the small screen in February or March of 2022, but this remains unconfirmed.

Who will star in Season 9 of When Calls The Heart?

When it comes to the "When Calls The Heart" Season 9 cast we know that Erin Krakow will be back, alongside the aforementioned Jack Wagner, Andrea Brooks, Kevin McGarry, Pascale Hutton, and Kavan Smith. Per Natasha Burnett's Twitter, she too will come back with Viv Leacock to once again portray Minnie and Joseph Canfield. As all Hearties know, Dr. Carson Shepherd left town at the end of Season 8, but thankfully, Paul Greene himself has confirmed that Shepherd's story isn't over yet and that he'll return for Season 9.

In Season 8, Elizabeth found herself torn between saloon owner Lucas Bouchard (Chris McNally) and kind town newbie Nathan Grant (McGarry). At the end of the season, she picked Bouchard, so it should come as no surprise that fans will get to see more of McNally in Season 9 as well.

The most interesting bit of casting scuttlebutt surrounds Abigail Stanton, who was written off the show in Season 6 after the actor behind her, Lori Loughlin, went to prison due to her involvement in a college bribery scandal. Fans have been anxious for Loughlin to return to the show since she finished her term, and the powers that be at seem to agree. "Some of the fans have asked what will happen to Abigail's character and shared their opinion that Hope Valley should be an example of forgiveness and grace. As Lori's friend, I could not agree more," the show's creator, Brian Bird, told From the Desk in 2019.

Even if Loughlin doesn't return to "When Calls the Heart" for Season 9, she'll at least pop up on its spin-off series, "When Hope Calls," this December (via Deadline).

What will Season 9 of When Calls The Heart be about?

You can definitely expect to see more of Elizabeth and Lucas' relationship as they enter an official courtship period. Viewers should prepare for some charming dates, and perhaps a bit of tension as they try to figure out how to navigate their romance. In fact, as noted by Cheat Sheet, a wedding may be on the horizon, but this is purely speculation. As to how a growing Jack Jr. (Lincoln and Gunnar Taylor) will react to his mother having a steady boyfriend — or possibly a husband –, that's up in the air.

Elizabeth selecting Lucas leaves Nathan a free agent, and with Faith (Brooks) now partnerless thanks to a break-up with Carson, the show might choose to test pairing this twosome together, which was strongly hinted at in the Season 8 finale. If Carson does return, that might make things quite emotionally sticky for Faith, and result in another love triangle — after all, he had planned to propose to her.

As the show keeps up with its many recurring players and their entanglements, assume you'll see more of Lee (Smith) and Rosemary's (Hutton) relationship as she works to restart the town newspaper, as well as more of Jesse (Aren Buchholz) and Clara's (Eva Bourne) struggle with their financial situation. Hickam (Ben Rosenbaum) and Fiona (Kayla Wallace) appear to be getting closer together too. Expect complications, cross-cast relationships, and oodles of romantic complications, as is the "When Calls The Heart" way.