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Lori Loughlin returns to acting in sneak peek of 1st post-prison project

Loughlin was let go from "When Calls the Heart" and "Fuller House" amid her involvement in the college admissions scandal.
Lori Loughlin appears on NBC's \"TODAY\" show on Feb. 15, 2017.
Lori Loughlin on NBC's "TODAY" show on Feb. 15, 2017.Nathan Congleton / TODAY

Lori Loughlin is returning to acting in her first gig since the 2019 college admissions scandal, reprising her “When Calls the Heart” character, Abigail Stanton, in the second season of the spinoff series “When Hope Calls.”

GAC Family released a sneak peek of the a two-part season premiere for "When Hopes Calls." In the 35-second clip, Abigail (Loughlin) walks up to a large Christmas tree in town alongside her son Cody (Carter Ryan) to admire its beauty before they have a heartfelt exchange.

Comments were turned off on the YouTube clip.

It was announced last month that Loughlin, 57, would return to the small screen for the first time in years. She will be seen in the two-part season premiere airing Dec. 18. “When Hope Calls” aired its first season on Hallmark’s streaming platform, Hallmark Movies Now, but it was moved to a new network, GAC Family.

Loughlin’s daughter Olivia Jade expressed her happiness this month about her mom’s return to acting.

“I’m super excited for her,” she told Entertainment Tonight. “That’s all I have to say.”

Loughlin last portrayed Abigail on the sixth season of Hallmark’s “When Calls the Heart” before she was let go amid her involvement in the admissions scandal. When the Hallmark Channel cut ties with her in March 2019, its parent company, Crown Media, said in a statement, "We are no longer working with Lori Loughlin and have stopped development of all productions that air on the Crown Media Family Network channels involving Lori Loughlin, including 'Garage Sale Mysteries,' an independent third party production."

She was also let go from the final season of Netflix’s “Full House” reboot, “Fuller House.”

Loughlin and her husband, Mossimo Giannulli, admitted to paying $500,000 to help their daughters, Olivia and Isabella, get admitted to the University of Southern California by falsely portraying them as rowing recruits.

Loughlin, who pleaded guilty to a federal charge of conspiracy to commit wire fraud and mail fraud, was sentenced to two months in prison and 100 hours of community service upon her release and fined $150,000. She was released at the end of December and will remain under supervised release for two years after having served her sentence.

Giannulli, who also pleaded guilty to an additional charge of conspiracy to commit honest services wire and mail fraud, served five months.

“Desperate Housewives” star Felicity Huffman also served a short prison sentence for her involvement in the college admissions scandal. She landed her first television role since the scandal in November, set to star opposite actor Zack Gottsagen in a coming baseball-centric comedy.

CORRECTION (Oct. 25, 2021, 5 p.m. ET): A previous version of this article misspelled the first name of Lori Loughlin's husband. He is Mossimo Giannulli, not Mossomi.