Italia Ricci Talks “Chasing Life” Christmas Special Airing Tonight – Read the Q&A!

Tony Rivetti/ABC Family

April’s grandparents come to visit, and April gets a chemo makeover in the holiday special of ABC Family’s Chasing Life.

In the episode titled “Locks of Love,” April’s grandparents (guest stars Ed Asner and Marion Ross) stir up trouble when they pay a visit, and the Carvers celebrate an early family Christmas. The full contents of Leo’s cryptic voicemail are revealed, leading April and Leo to rethink their last goodbye. In an attempt to help her friend cope with the effects of chemo, Beth helps April with a makeover, or two. The episode was written by Executive Producers Susanna Fogel and Joni Lefkowitz and directed by Lee Rose.

Italia Ricci spoke to us about what we can expect from tonight’s episode, what it was like filming for the holidays in the summer, on April’s progress, her advice for April, and what we can expect from the January premiere.

Chasing Life’s holiday special airs tonight, December 9th at 9:00 p.m. ET/PT on ABC Family. Clips from “Locks of Love” and stills under!

On tonight’s Christmas episode: “You get to see the dynamic with that side of the family and especially how they feel about Grandma who lives with us. It’s one of my favorite, favorite bits we’ve done all season.  Fans can look forward to that! You will see what happens to Leo and whether or not he has the surgery and how that goes, if it does go.  You get to see April go through a few different hairstyle looks before she finally loses it all.” 

On what was it like filming for the Christmas episode during the summer: “It was very strange because that was the last episode that we filmed all season, even though it’s in the middle of the season.  I believe we filmed it in August. It was all inside for me since April is in the hospital room.  It wasn’t supposed to be Christmas outside, so it didn’t feel too weird but it got prematurely in the spirit.  I was humming Christmas carols when I was coming home and everybody thought I was a bit nuts. It definitely just got me in the spirit a little too early.”

On April’s progress in her treatment and recoveryWe see this is the end of her chemo, the tail end of her chemo in the Christmas episode.  We see how it finishes and you get an idea of how she’s going to recover, if she’s going to recover and who’s going to be there with her during it.

What fans can expect from the January premiere: “We’ll see the second half of the season as April gets back to where she left everything off. We see how she deals with everything now after having been through what she’s been through, with the chemo. You see how she deals with the physical aspect of chemo — the things that happen to you physically after you finish chemo. Mentally, she becomes forgetful and dealswith trying to get back to where she was even before she was diagnosed.  She just wants to be normal again.  You see her battle with not being able to do certain things and try to figure out ways to make them happen. She makes mistakes and just wants to be a girl in her twenties again, and have fun and live her life.  You’ll see her trying to do that but having some of those obstacles stopping her and how her friends react.”

Her advice for April: “You look great bald [laughs]! I would tell her—because it definitely gets hard and her family is there for her and sometimes that still doesn’t feel like enough.  I would tell her to not give up and stay strong.  There is light at the end of the tunnel. I would tell her to keep holding on, never give up, stay strong, and keep believing that you’ll be okay, because if you don’t have that, then what are you holding on to?”


Chasing Life – Christmas Special Preview

Photos: ABC Family

Juliet Schroder

Written by Juliet Schroder

Juliet is the founder and executive producer/host of Celeb Secrets and Celeb Secrets Country. When not reporting on the latest news in pop culture and country music, she enjoys traveling, spending time with friends and family, and exploring the latest fashion trends.

Juliet holds a B.S. in marketing from St. John's University.