‘The Waltons’ Remake Star Marcelle LeBlanc Talks Filming Winter Scenes in the Georgia Heat

by Chase Thomas
(Photo by Wil R/Star Max/GC Images)

The Waltons is back with The Waltons: Homecoming. In a recent interview with Judy Norton, star Marcelle LeBlanc talked about filming Winter scenes in the Georgia heat. It was a stark contrast to Norton, who revealed when they filmed in November it was rather cold still. That was not the case for LeBlanc and the cast for the remake who had to battle the Georgia heat for their winter scenes.

LeBlanc said it was “about 115 degrees” outside where they were filming in Covington. This was a tough ask for the stars of the program, as they were dressed in wool and winter items. LeBlanc described it as “so, so hot” while filming these scenes.

Interestingly enough, though, Outsiders, the cast were wearing vests of some sort under their clothes, because as LeBlanc revealed the crew could slip ice packs in there to keep the actors cool in the hot conditions down there in Covington, Georgia.

‘The Waltons: Homecoming’ with LeBlanc

LeBlanc plays an iconic role in the remake. She spoke with Pop Culturalist about the remake and described it as, “set in 1933 during the Great Depression around Christmas time. We’re all getting ready for Christmas and we find out that our dad may be coming home. It’s very exciting.”

This brings us back to the interview where LeBlanc recalls filming those holiday scenes in that blistering Georgia summer heat.

She continued, “Mary-Ellen is a fun character. I loved, loved, loved getting to play her and learn more about her. She’s definitely strong-willed, especially for someone who is fourteen in 1933. She defies what people expect a woman to be. Her dream is to be a pilot. She isn’t going to let anybody tell her that her dreams are unreasonable and that she can’t aspire to them because she’s a woman. I love that about her.”

Mary-Ellen is an interesting character and it’s one that LeBlanc is clearly excited about playing. The character is a free-thinker on The Waltons. She has big dreams and it contrasts with her family’s expectations. Still, the character is strong-willed and dead-set on following her dreams.

She concluded, “Now I’m in contact with Judy Norton, the original Mary-Ellen. We talked a lot about this character, and I actually found out that we had the same audition scene. The scene where we’re cracking walnuts in the barn. 50 years ago this was her audition scene. 50 years later it was my audition scene. That’s such a fun little connection.”

Norton interviewed LeBlanc about the role, and it’s clear the two share a connection over it. It’s also smart of LeBlanc to work with Norton over the character and how to get it right. Even though so much time has passed between the two iterations, The Waltons lives on and LeBlanc cleared wants to get it right.