Road To Avonlea: Season 6 (Buy This Season) | 6.1: The Return of Gus Pike | 6.2: Lonely Hearts | 6.3: Christmas in June | 6.4: Fools and Kings | 6.5: Comings and Goings | 6.6: The Trouble with Davey | 6.7: Great Expectations | 6.8: A Fox Tale | 6.9: The More Things Change | 6.10: Home is Where the Heart is | 6.11: What a Tangled Web We Weave | 6.12: A Time to Every Purpose | 6.13: Homecoming
The majestic, European Countess Polenska has come to the White Sands Hotel to see her son married to a Canadian girl from a wealthy family. All of Avonlea is buzzing in anticipation of so noble a wedding when the indigent Maggie MacPhee arrives claiming to be the mother of Pierre LaPierre – the owner of the White Sands!
A mortified Pierre admits that he hasn’t seen his mother in years and has been lying to her all along, ashamed of only being a cook. When Maggie learns the truth she is inconsolable, announcing that it is her daughter, Pierre’s sister Adele who is to marry the Countess’ son. She is sure that once the Countess learns that Adele’s family is not rich, she will call off the wedding.
Little do they know that the Countess herself is down to her last penny, having lost her entire family fortune. Maggie and the personable Countess are introduced and take to each other right away.
Soon they both admit to their poverty and realize that the love of their family is what truly makes them wealthy.
Notes & Inspirations
- Originally Aired March 19, 1995
- This episode features Oscar winning actress Faye Dunaway as Countess Polenska.
- Faye Dunaway’s driver was involved in a car accident in Toronto after picking her up from a shopping spree in Toronto. Rather than deal with the Police, she grabbed her parcels and hurried to her hotel on foot.
- Maureen Stapleton was nominated for a ‘Cable Ace Award’ for ‘Best Guest Actress in a Dramatic Series’ and an Emmy for ‘Outstanding Guest Actress in a Drama Series’ in 1996 for her role as Maggie MacPhee.
- Maureen Stapleton was good friends with Colleen Dewhurst and was eager to take the role of Maggie MacPhee after hearing how much Colleen enjoyed playing Marilla Cuthbert in both “Anne of Green Gables” and “Road to Avonlea”.
- The shot of the sleigh traveling towards the White Sands was actually filmed in three different places. The close ups were filmed on the grounds at the McLean House in Toronto (as were the various exterior scenes of the Countess at the back of White Sands); the wide shot was filmed on the grounds of Spadina museum in Toronto; and the wide shot of the White Sands was filmed at Dalvay by the Sea in P.E.I. The wide shots of the White Sands and the sleigh were merged together in post using optical effects.
- For scheduling reasons, the exterior main entrance of the White Sands façade was built behind the studio to avoid filming scenes with Faye Dunaway at the Avonlea backlot in Uxbridge. Faye Dunaway was the only guest star not to film scenes on the Avonlea backlot.
- The original title for this episode was “The Daring Deception of Maggie MacPhee”.