The Real-Life Partners Of Hallmark's Leading Men

The Hallmark Channel has been airing feel-good movies for years. Its many Christmas-themed made-for-television films, for example, follow similar plotlines of people trying to find love during the holiday season. And, while we can probably predict what will happen at the end, these flicks make us happier, and who doesn't love cozying up on the couch with a heartwarming movie? 

There are a lot of familiar faces playing these lovey-dovey roles. Some of the network's leading ladies include Erin Krakow, Lacey Chabert, and Holly Robinson Pete. Then, of course, there's "Queen of Christmas" Candice Cameron Bure, who starred in several Hallmark films and the "Aurora Teagarden Mysteries" before she departed from the network to join its competitor Great American Family. However, these women wouldn't be able to find onscreen love without the perfect partner. That's where the many leading men of Hallmark come in. These top stars include Andrew Walker, Cameron Mathison, and Kevin McGarry, who have played love interests in many of these classic films. 

While these men tend to search for their perfect match on screen during the holidays, these actors have already found love in real life. Check out who the real-life partners of your favorite Hallmark leading men are and which of these stars' love stories have played out like a Hallmark film.

Brennan Elliott has been married to his wife since 2011

Brennan Elliott has portrayed several romantic interests in Hallmark films, including "All of My Heart," "A Christmas Melody," and "Marry Go Round." In addition, from 2013 to 2015, Brennan portrayed Warren Saget on the Hallmark series "Cedar Cove." 

This TV star might be capturing the hearts of many women in his roles, but in real life, Brennan has been married to his wife, psychologist Cami Elliott, since 2011, with whom he shares two children. The actor was by his wife's side after she was diagnosed with stage 1 stomach cancer in 2018 and when she was declared cancer free that same year. However, "The Gift of Peace" actor revealed that Cami had stage 4 metastatic gastric cancer in April 2022 on Instagram. In March 2023, Brennan announced his wife was cancer free. "All of the biopsies came back negative, as well as the fluid. It's been such an impossible journey, but today is the day to rejoice in God's mercy and grace," he wrote in part in an Instagram post.

The actor is known for being private but shared his praises for his wife in an interview with My Devotional Thoughts in 2018. "I couldn't do what I do without her. She's the bedrock of our family. She is the one who takes care of our children whenever I'm filming, and without her, I don't know where I'd be," Brennan said. 

Cameron and Vanessa Mathison travel the world together

Cameron Mathison has been a fixture on the Hallmark Channel since 2013. His first movie for the network was "The Christmas Ornament," with plenty of holiday films to follow, including "A Christmas to Remember," "The Christmas Club," and "A Kindhearted Christmas." From 2015 to 2017, Cameron starred in the Hallmark series "Murder, She Baked," and he was also a co-host for the network's "Home & Family" talk show from 2013 until its cancellation in March 2021. 

Basically, Cameron has been one busy actor. When he isn't filming holiday made-for-TV movies, he stars as Drew Cain in "General Hospital." However, with all his roles, he still finds time for his family. Cameron has been married to his wife and former model, Vanessa Mathison, since 2002. When Cameron isn't on set, he and his family travel across the world. On Instagram, fans can see him, his wife, and their two children vacationing in Greece and skiing in Aspen, Colorado. For the couple's 20th wedding anniversary, the Mathison family took a trip to the Philippines, which the actor shared on social media. 

Fans of the TV star have most likely seen a lot of Vanessa, too. She was regularly seen on Mathison's "Home & Family" talk show, and also got to expand her resume when she acted alongside her husband in three episodes of "General Hospital" in 2022. 

Jonathan Bennett married Jaymes Vaughan in 2022

Jonathan Bennett will forever be linked to his "Mean Girls" character, Aaron Samuels, but he's since made history on the Hallmark Channel. Bennett, who is openly gay, starred in the network's 2020 film "The Christmas House," which became its first movie to predominately feature a same-sex couple. Two years later, Bennett made history in Hallmark's "The Holiday Sitter," as it became the first LGBTQ+ led Hallmark Christmas-themed film. The TV movie was nominated for a GLAAD Award, with Bennett taking to Instagram to thank the network for understanding the importance of inclusion in its projects.

Bennett may be stealing loads of hearts on the Hallmark Channel, but in real life, this actor is dedicated to his partner, Jaymes Vaughan, whom he confirmed he was dating in 2017 after sharing numerous joint photos on Instagram. In November 2020, the couple became engaged, and in March 2022, they tied the knot in a stunning wedding in Mexico. Vaughan, who competed on "The Amazing Race," talked about their joyous nuptials with People, stating, "I got to marry my best friend! I knew we'd be emotional, but I don't think either of us realized just how overwhelming that moment would be until we were in it. Seeing him cry only made me cry harder, and then our guests cry harder, and then we'd all start laughing, and then all back to crying." 

Watching their wedding video montage on Instagram made our eyes water, too. 

Colin Donnell and Patti Murin love to share the screen

You don't see many actors working alongside their real-life partners, but Colin Donnell and his wife, Patti Murin, are an exception. Both actors have worked together in the Hallmark made-for-TV movies "Love on Iceland" and "To Catch a Spy." But that's not all. Besides their work for the Hallmark Channel, Donnell and Murin shared the screen while playing Connor Rhodes and Nina Shore on "Chicago Med." Clearly, this couple enjoys seeing each other at work and home. 

Despite acting together, the pair have yet to play a couple on screen. However, Murin shared with People in 2021, "It's nice that people like to have us both around at the same time. But they don't necessarily need to cast us [as love interests]." She explained, "Honestly, it works for us, especially now with a child, because then it's either he's working or I'm working. So it's sort of nice to both work at the same place, but we're not spending 24/7 together constantly, giving each other a chance to be sick of each other."

Before the two stars landed roles on Hallmark, they worked together in the 2013 musical adaptation of Shakespeare's "Love's Labour's Lost." They tied the knot in 2015 and share two daughters, Cecily, born in July 2020, and Lorelai, born in April 2023. 

Chris McNally met Julie Gonzalo on a Hallmark film set

Actor Chris McNally met his partner, Julie Gonzalo, on the set of their Hallmark Channel movie, 2018's "The Sweetest Heart." Gonzalo starred as Maddie, a cupcake maker who gets help from an investment banker for her bakery business. While doing so, the pair strike up more than a working relationship; but that changes when her first love, Nate, played by McNally, unexpectedly shows up in their town. Can you guess how this one ends?

Meanwhile, McNally and Gonzalo — who have each starred in several Hallmark movies over the years, such as his turns in "A Tail of Love" and "Snowkissed" and hers in "Flip That Romance" and "Jingle Bell Bride" — clearly hit it off behind the camera. "At the end of the day, chemistry is about feeling good about the person you're with and knowing their energy," Gonzalo told FanSided, noting how they took time to go over lines and bond off-camera. "... He's such a wonderful, wonderful person and a terrific actor so it was very easy with him."

There's no confirmation if McNally and Gonzalo have wed, as of this writing. McNally and Gonzalo's Instagram feeds show how private this couple is, with close to no photos of one another on either of their accounts. However, they shared some exciting news on Instagram when they announced the birth of their first child in June 2022. Gonzalo posted a photo of their newborn holding onto both of their fingers, captioning it, "Our hearts are full. ... Welcome baby M." 

Kristoffer Polaha's real-life partner is a soap star

Kristoffer Polaha's first Hallmark feature was 2016's "The Dater's Handbook," in which he starred opposite Meghan Markle, the same year she began dating Prince Harry. In an interview with SheKnows, Polaha revealed that he was the one who advised Markle to get out of a previous relationship. "She texted me in January, and she was like, 'I took your advice. I'm single. I'm free. I'm going to see who's out there.' In March, I get this other text, and she's like, 'Well, I met someone.' I said, 'Do you like him?' And she said, 'I kinda do.' And then, of course, it was Harry."

For his part, Polaha had already long been married, having wed Julianne Morris in 2003. They share three sons. An actor herself, Morris is best known for portraying Greta Von Amberg in "Days of Our Lives" and Amy Wilson on "The Young and the Restless."

"It was a really beautiful, innocent two-year courtship where we just took our time to get to know each other, and it was in that time where I was like, 'I don't think that my career is going to amount to anything unless I have someone to share it with,'" Polaha told MovieGuide. "And I loved meeting Julianne when I did because I knew she wasn't marrying me for my money or my fame or anything other than the fact that she just loved me." Having played the leading man in several Hallmark Christmas films, Polaha's most known as Detective Travis Burke in the "Mystery 101" series.

Paul Campbell eloped with Lorie Metz in 2009

Paul Campbell is a familiar face on the Hallmark Channel. His first film with the network was 2013's "Window Wonderland," and he's since starred in several of their feel-good holiday movies, including, "Once Upon a Holiday," "Surprised by Love," and "Three Wise Men and a Baby," which he wrote with fellow Hallmark actor Kimberley Sustad. 

Campbell took a break from acting after he welcomed a son named Kingston with his wife, divorce and life coach Lorie Metz, in 2016. The couple eloped in 2009 but had a traditional wedding two years later. He shared with My Devotional Thoughts in 2018, "So I was out for about eighteen months before I decided it was time to get back on the horse. And that's when I pitched the idea to Hallmark for 'Sun, Sand & Romance.'" Campbell returned to work for the 2017 movie, which he also produced, even bringing Metz and their son on set, as he shared in a family selfie on Instagram. Kingston would become a regular on the set of his dad's films: He paid a visit while Campbell was filming a Hallmark movie in 2019. 

It seems likely that fans will be seeing more of Campbell and maybe even his son in the future. As of this writing, the actor's latest work with the network was 2023's Hallmark's Movies & Mysteries' "The Cases of Mystery Lane." "Hallmark Channel is the perfect place for me to be working right now," Campbell said, adding of the network's family-friendly content, "It's definitely the direction that I feel I'm headed."

Carlos PenaVega married Spy Kids star Alexa PenaVega

Carlos and Alexa PenaVega have been acting alongside one another for years. Before they wed, the acting duo was first seen together in Carlos' Nickelodeon series "Big Time Rush." Alexa starred as her future husband's girlfriend in the series finale in July 2013. Carlos and Alexa announced their engagement two months later and tied the knot in Mexico in January 2014, combining their last names.

The "Spy Kids" actor helped her hubby land a gig on Hallmark after she began appearing on the network in 2016 with "Ms. Matched." The following year, she and Carlos co-starred in "Enchanted Christmas" and again in 2018's "Love at Sea." In 2019, they landed the roles of Allie Adams and Sam Acosta in the Hallmark series "Picture Perfect Mysteries." Alexa has gushed about getting to act alongside Carlos, telling TV Insider, "I love working with my husband. We really know what each other's limits are, and we can be way more playful. I think there's something to be said that's really special about getting to work with your spouse."

The couple is also the parents of three children: two sons named Ocean and Kingston and a daughter named Rio.

Paul Greene is engaged to Kate Austin

Paul Greene has worked with pretty much every leading lady on the Hallmark Channel. The actor's first movie with the network was 2015's "Perfect Match," where he worked alongside Danica McKellar. After that, he starred alongside the "Queen of Christmas" Candice Cameron Bure in "A Christmas Detour," actor Lacey Chabert in "A Wish for Christmas," and Rachel Boston in "Christmas in Angel Falls." Since 2017, Greene has also portrayed Dr. Carson Shepherd in the series "When Calls the Heart." 

Of course, Greene's most important leading lady is his fiancée, actor and life strategist Kate Austin. The pair got engaged in May 2019, with their wedding plans pushed aside because of the coronavirus pandemic. The Australian actor and Greene welcomed a son named Austin into the world in December 2021, making him the Hallmark star's second child: Greene also shares a much older son named Oliver with ex-wife Angi Fletcher.

Before Greene and Austin welcomed their son, Greene gushed to People about becoming a father for the second time. "It teaches me to be kind and patient and is a total learning experience, which keeps me young. I was born to be a dad," he said.

Eric Mabius ended up marrying someone from high school

Actor Eric Mabius became a permanent fixture on the Hallmark Channel thanks to the success of the 2013 series "Signed, Sealed, Delivered." Despite the show only running for one season, its popularity with fans resulted in 12 movies based on Mabius' character, postal worker Oliver O'Toole — as of this writing, the latest film "Signed, Sealed, Delivered: The Vows We Have Made" was released in 2021. Of course, like many of his fellow Hallmark leading men, Mabius has also been in holiday favorites, including "Welcome to Christmas" and "It's Beginning to Look a Lot like Christmas."

Since 2006, Mabius has been married to his wife, interior designer Ivy Sherman, with the couple welcoming two children. In fact, Mabius and Sherman go way back. The two went to high school together and were in the same sex-ed class during their freshman year, but they didn't get together until much later. He told Us Weekly in 2008, "If someone told me I was going to marry someone from high school, I would've told them they're out of their minds!" Shedding more light on their relationship beginnings, Mabius explained to AP News (via 6 ABC), "10 years later when I was in New Orleans working on a project, my best friend put us back in touch. And the rest, as they say... ."

Although Mabius appears to be relatively private about his family life, his Instagram is filled with photos of his Bullmastiff, Louie, as well as scenic images of parks and beaches he has visited. 

Kevin McGarry fell in love on the When Calls the Heart set

Kevin McGarry's first lead role for the Hallmark Channel was 2017's "Love at First Bark," opposite country singer Jana Kramer. From there, McGarry starred in several Hallmark holiday films, including "Winter Castle," "Christmas Scavenger Hunt," and "Winter Love Story." In 2019, he nabbed the role of Nathan Grant in Hallmark's TV series "When Calls the Heart." It was on this set where he met and fell in love with his fiancée, actor Kayla Wallace.

Both McGarry and Wallace joined Season 6 of "When Calls the Heart," with Wallace portraying Fiona Miller. In November 2020, McGarry confirmed that he was in a relationship with Wallace after posting a photo of a series of Polaroids featuring the pair together and captioning it, "Photo evidence," on Instagram. In 2022, they starred in two Hallmark films, "Feeling Butterflies" and "My Grown-Up Christmas List."

That December, the "Heartland" actor proposed to Wallace and shared a video on Instagram of the two kissing while she showed off her engagement ring. The touching post was captioned, "Forever," alongside a heart emoji.

Andrew Walker and Cassandra Troy tied the knot in 2012

When thinking about leading men on the Hallmark Channel, actor Andrew Walker comes to mind instantly. Walker has been working with the network since 2012, when he starred in "A Bride for Christmas" and "Finding Mrs. Claus." In 2017 and 2018 alone, he played the lead in eight Hallmark movies alongside many of the channel's leading ladies, including Danica McKellar and Lacey Chabert. In addition, Walker has been in several other holiday favorites, such as starring in Paul Campbell's "Three Wise Men and a Baby" in 2022.

Walker's Hallmark characters have definitely charmed many women, but the actor is dedicated to his wife, Cassandra Troy, in real life. The couple eloped in 2012 after having known one another for eight years and have since welcomed two sons, West and Wolf. In 2022, the couple celebrated 10 years of marriage and publicly marked the occasion by sharing a vacation photo in a joint Instagram post.

Talking to ET about their successful partnership, Walker shared, "She stays in her lane, I try to stay in my lane. And we just communicate a lot." He explained, "When something is affecting us, we just bring it up to each other and try to remedy it as quickly and efficiently as possible and then get back to doing what we do." Walker and Troy are also owners of the cold-pressed juice company Little West.