Everything about Seed, eh?


City cancels Seed

It’s the end of the road for homegrown comedy Seed. Rogers made the decision official on Thursday morning via email.

“We are extremely proud of Seed and the two seasons that we were able to bring to our viewers,” the statement reads. “It was a privilege to work with the immense talent behind both the cast and creators involved in this quality Canadian production. It was a difficult decision, but, despite critical acclaim, the series was unable to connect with the audience it needed to continue. We thank Canadians for their support for Seed over the last two years and look forward to bringing them more original content in the future.”

The writing was on the wall. Late last month The CW–which had acquired it and CTV Extend series Backpackers for summer broadcast on the U.S. network–announced it was pulling both off the air for Arrow repeats and the next cycle of America’s Next Top Model. That move erased any chance of grabbing Seed some seed-money to help fund a third season.

Seed starred Adam Korson as Harry, a sperm donor who became involved in the lives of the three families he helped spawn. The cast included Carrie-Lynne Neales, Amanda Brugel, Stephanie Anne Mills, Laura De Carteret, Matt Baram, Vanessa Matsui, Abby Ross and William Ainscough.

Seed was created by Joseph Raso, who served as co-showrunner and executive producer alongside Mark Farrell, John Ritchie, Rob Bromley, Gillian Lowrey, Karen Wentzell and Paula J. Smith. Seed was produced by Force Four Entertainment and Waterstar Entertainment.

Rogers does have original comedies waiting in the wings. Package Deal returns for Season 2 next month, Meet the Family will be back in the coming broadcast season and the company has greenlit production of Sunnyside, a sketch comedy series created by Gary Pearson and Dan Redican and starring Pat Thorton, Lauren Ash and Kathleen Phillips.


Shooting the baby on set with Seed


From John Doyle of the Globe and Mail:

Seed: This baby’s got potential for a Gen Y hit
“We only shoot the baby once a week.” That’s pretty much the first thing I hear on the set of Seed, the comedy series. It’s day 47 of a 52-day schedule. In this emphatically unglamorous building in a Dartmouth industrial park, about 65 people are working on the funny business. Outside it’s pouring rain and there’s a fierce wind blowing. By evening, most flights out of Halifax airport will be cancelled. Continue reading.

Bitten and Seed picked up by US networks

From Lesley Goldberg of the Hollywood Reporter:

Syfy Acquires Canadian Werewolf Drama ‘Bitten’
Based on the best-selling novels Women of the Otherworld by Kelley Armstrong, the supernatural thriller stars Smallville’s Laura Vandervoort as Elena Michaels, the lone female werewolf in existence. The 13-episode drama will unspool on Syfy — and Bell Media’s Space network in Canada — in 2014. Continue reading.

From Greg David of TV Guide Canada:

The CW picks up Canadian ‘Seed’
We weren’t sure if Seed would be planted for another season in Canada, but not only will it return for Season 2, it’s growing. City and Entertainment One confirmed they are spreading Seed south of the border, now that The CW has picked up the rights to broadcast Season 1 of the Canadian sitcom.
Continue reading.


Industry Update – Rogers Media/City 2013 Upfront


Rogers Media’s 2013 upfront was held June 4, 2013, at the Metro Toronto Convention Centre. Before the upfront, Rogers announced the renewal of Seed, as well as the rescheduling of Package Deal to fall 2013. This stuff you already know, so I won’t waste time typing about it.

The interviews started shortly after 2:30 PM ET. Surprisingly, five of the seven interview segments focused on Canadian shows. Seed and Package Deal featured cast interviews, though a majority of Seed‘s questions were answered by executive producer Mark Farrell and star Adam Korson. Eva Longoria was on hand for Mother Up! Also interviewed were the cast of OLN/City’s Storage Wars Canada, and Ray Zahab from OLN/City’s The Project: Guatemala. Rounding out the bill were James Wolk from The Crazy Ones, and Lauren Ash from Super Fun Night.

The Score, which joined the Sportsnet family as soon as the CRTC approved Rogers’ takeover of the channel, will become Sportsnet 360 on July 1. This doesn’t mean The Score is dead – the website and mobile businesses Score Digital owns still carry The Score’s lineage, and name.

Rogers promised Sportsnet 360 would retain The Score’s personality, and I hope Sportsnet 360 makes the cut. I just hope it doesn’t become a clearinghouse for Sportsnet 590 The Fan simulcasts. It’s nice Tim Micallef and Sid Seixeiro are back on The Score/Sportsnet 360, but the Tim and Sid simulcast is there for three hours of easy weekday CanCon.

The Rogers upfront presentation was typical of its kind: a rundown of Rogers’ properties, with a visible countdown displaying the number of minutes until free bar access. The most genuine surprise was two performances by Tegan and Sara, in service of City obtaining Canadian broadcast rights to the Grammy Awards. Professional wrestler Ron Killings (d/b/a WWE’s R-Truth) and IZOD IndyCar driver James Hinchcliffe shepherded The Score into the Sportsnet family.

Rogers was especially interested in Mother Up!, showing unfinished and behind-the-scenes clips of the show during the upfront presentation. The clips were rough – backgrounds weren’t cleaned up and painted in. It struck me as odd to showcase Mother Up! in beta mode, yet it’s obvious Rogers has high hopes for it. Package Deal clips were also screened, while Breakfast Television formally announced a Montreal edition with a “surprising” host.

One notable thing about City’s 2013-14 fall schedule is the return of Great Canadian Movies, which will air Saturday at 9:00 PM ET, after an “encore presentation” of The Project: Guatemala. The Canadian movie block was temporarily retired in 2012-13, in favour of The Bachelor Canada, Less Than Kind and Murdoch Mysteries “encores”.

The Rogers upfront promoted OMNI’s Bollywood Star. Mohawk Girls, an APTN/OMNI series, wasn’t mentioned. It was a curious omission. CityNews Channel’s immediate termination last week was also ignored. Granted, upfronts deal in “happy news” moments, and don’t focus on the failures. I would have liked to see Rogers mention CityNews Channel; it was an integral part of Rogers’ 2011 upfront.

To promote Storage Wars Canada during the free bar, advertisers were handed “Rogers Cash”. The completion of activities – e.g., having a caricature drawn at the Mother Up! booth, playing a racing simulation and/or meeting R-Truth at the Sportsnet 360 booth, getting a Cityline beauty makeover – allowed participants to earn more “Rogers Cash”. It was a departure from standard protocol – Canadian television upfronts don’t usually have a gaming element. This was mainly for the advertisers’ amusement, but it was effective enough promotion.

In the end, Rogers Media had a relatively modest 2013 upfront, even though it was more lavish than the 2012 upfront. While not much actual news was offered, at least Rogers didn’t oversell itself. The countdown-to-free-bar display was a bit much, though.