The iZombie actor has joined the cast of the Hallmark Channel drama ahead of its Season 5 premiere, which is set for Sunday, Aug. 15, Deadline reports.
In addition, Emmy winner Phoef Sutton (Cheers, Terriers) will take over as showrunner, replacing John Tinker (Judging Amy).
The casting news comes just two weeks after it was reported that original series star Jesse Metcalfe (aka Trace Riley) would depart Chesapeake Shores midway through Season 5. Buckley’s character, Evan McKenzie, is described as a successful entrepreneur who brings a new development project into town.
“We are thrilled to bring back Chesapeake Shores for a long-awaited fifth season with Phoef Sutton’s brilliant voice leading this new chapter for the O’Brien family,” Hallmark EVP of Programming Michelle Vicary said in a statement. “As for Robert Buckley joining the cast, he has been part of the Hallmark family for years — most recently he starred in and produced The Christmas House — and I know that the show’s fans will thoroughly embrace him in this new role.”
Buckley joins returning series regulars Meghan Ory, Treat Williams, Diane Ladd, Barbara Niven, Laci J. Mailey, Emilie Ullerup, Brendan Penny and Andrew Francis.
Before Chesapeake Shores returns, Hallmark diehards can look forward to the return of Good Witch, which kicks off its seventh season on Sunday, May 16. On the cancellation front, the network recently confirmed that Home and Family would end with Season 9.
Are you looking forward to Chesapeake Shores‘ return? Intrigued by Buckley’s casting in the wake of Metcalfe’s departure? Drop your thoughts in a comment below.