Hallmark is putting autism front and center in its signature holiday movie lineup with a film starring an actor on the spectrum and an actress with well-known ties to the autism community.

Production is set to start on a film that Hallmark says is its first to feature a character with autism.

The movie currently titled “The Christmas Bond” stars Holly Robinson Peete and Nik Sanchez, an actor with autism.

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“In the story, as a single mom (Peete) and her teenaged son with autism (Sanchez) come to a crossroad during Christmas, she must learn to let go so he can flourish and finds her own heart healing in unexpected ways,” Hallmark said of the film.

Robinson Peete, who is also an executive producer of the movie, has a son on the spectrum and has long been active in the autism community. She said the “The Christmas Bond” has special meaning for her.

“I am making this movie for my son RJ, others with autism and their families,” Robinson Peete said. “I am grateful to Hallmark for bringing this story to screen with authenticity, respect and hope.”

“The Christmas Bond” will air later this year on Hallmark Movies & Mysteries as part of the network’s “Miracles of Christmas” event.

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