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Danica McKellar's adds Valentine's Day movie to resume

Rick Bentley, Tribune News Service on

Published in Entertainment News

Danica McKellar, who won and broke hearts with her portrayal of Winnie Cooper on "The Wonder Years," graduated summa cum laude from UCLA with a bachelor of science in mathematics. She's published papers and written numerous books on the world of numbers.

She took time away from the math world to star in the new Hallmark Channel film, "Very, Very Valentine." McKellar's character, Helen, is a flower shop employee, and her best friend, Henry (Cameron Mathison), works at the botanical gardens. Helen falls for a mystery man at a fancy ball and enlists Henry's help in finding him. How this mystery man will play into the tale of romance and roses is part of Hallmark Channel's annual ode to love through the "Countdown to Valentine's Day."

Because McKellar is an internationally-recognized mathematician, it only makes sense to ask her to discuss in math terms the romantic connection between the characters in her new film.

"Their relationship is an obtuse triangle because Henry and Helen have been best friends and they are both too obtuse to see that they belong together," McKellar says.

McKellar has made multiple movies for the cable channel themes to major holidays but is particularly happy to be part of the Valentine's Day presentations. If you have any doubts McKellar is big fan of Valentine's Day, she will show you all the drawings and doodles she's made since she was little. Doing the Valentine's movie for her was like having a big childhood fantasy come to life.

"The projects done by Hallmark are such feel-good movies," McKellar says. "I love being a part of them because they are happy nice films that will make you feel better after watching them than you did before.

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"I love being able to tell people to tune in and you're going to have a great time."

Right after "The Wonder Years," McKellar, 43, pursued darker roles to break out of the wholesome image she had from the TV family comedy, but eventually decided she wanted to be involved with upbeat projects. McKellar's reached a point in her career where she can pick a project that appeals to her in a variety of ways. There are movies like "Very, Very Valentine" where she knows the work will make her and the viewers feel good, or the voice work in "DC Super Hero Girls" as the voice of Frost, a superhero who is good at math and science, where she can have another outlet to push learning.

She doesn't mind when people still want to talk to her about "The Wonder Years" despite it going off the air 25 years ago.

"When I was about 14 and in the middle of the show, I got a little tired of it. I was a teenager and I wanted to be known for me and not just this one character," McKellar says. "When I got into college, I realized that this was a really loved show. What a wonderful thing to be a part of.

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