TV, eh? | What's up in Canadian television | Page 20
TV,eh? What's up in Canadian television

The Amazing Race finale moves to Sunday night

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From a media release:

The finish line is in sight! With only two exciting episodes left to go for Canada’s #1 summer series THE AMAZING RACE CANADA, CTV announced today that Season 2 will conclude with a two-hour special event from 8-10 p.m. ET/PT on Sunday, Sept. 21. First, the hotly anticipated Season 2 finale will air in a special Sunday night timeslot on CTV and CTV GO. Then, immediately following the exhilarating finish is the fan-favourite, one-hour after-show special, AFTER THE RACE. Shot live and hosted by TSN’s James Duthie (@tsnjamesduthie), AFTER THE RACE reunites all 11 teams to re-live their most memorable moments, while also giving viewers a look at the exclusive first chat with the finalists and the newly crowned winners, just minutes after Canada learns who wins the Race. Produced in front of a live studio audience from CTV’s headquarters in Toronto, this is THE AMAZING RACE CANADA’s second after-show special of the season, following the popular midseason special in August.

“This season of THE AMAZING RACE CANADA is like a great summer sport,” said Duthie. “It has drama, the full spectrum of emotion, and we’ve seen brilliant strategy, pure luck, and absolute blunders. AFTER THE RACE will tackle the hard-hitting questions and the moments that left us talking all summer long.”

“Viewers can look forward to an incredible THE AMAZING RACE CANADA finale,” said Phil King, President – CTV, Sports, and Entertainment Programming. “Then, AFTER THE RACE breaks down the finale – and season – with all 11 teams, and helps answer the questions that viewers at home might be thinking.”

Extending the season finale into a two-hour event, AFTER THE RACE host Duthie goes beyond the mat and talks to teams about the most unforgettable moments, the toughest challenges, and strategies. And like the midseason edition, questions and comments will also come from audience members and fans pulled via Twitter and Facebook, who use the hashtag #AfterTheRace. Viewers can also expect a special appearance from host Jon Montgomery and more in this jam-packed special.

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Comments and queries for the week of Sept. 12

How do you go about getting Sebastian Clovis to do your property, especially back yards that are just about totally unusable? He says he also does outdoor spaces.–Linda

You’re in luck if you live in the Greater Toronto Area! Sebastian and the folks at Tackle My Reno are currently casting for projects. Find out more at Sebastian’s website.

[In response to Confessions of a Cord Cutter] Where I live we can only get expensive satellite TV, as there’s no access to cable. I would cord cut myself but my so-called high-speed Internet is not speedy enough to watch shows online. Netflix usually works OK for me and I’m not sure why, but there’s just not enough shows on there for me. And my husband couldn’t live without Wild TV, the hunting channel. The kids are content to watch kids shows on Netflix though.–Ally

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Package Deal tightens up for Season 2

Change is good, and for City’s Package Deal it may end up being great. The Canadian original sitcom is back for a second season on a new night–Fridays at 9 p.m.–a new promotional campaign and an evolution in the creative process.

“The writing is tighter and edgier than it was last season,” Randal Edwards says. The West Coast native is back as lawyer Danny White, straight man to brothers Sheldon (Harland Williams) and Ryan (Jay Malone) and boyfriend to Kim Mattingly (Julia Voth). As with the first season, Danny is still struggling to break free from Sheldon and Ryan and establish his own life with Kim. It doesn’t always work; Friday’s return, “Silverball,” spotlights the reaction the boys have when they discover Danny went to see the newest James Bond flick with Kim rather than keep up the tradition the trio had of seeing the spy movies together.

And while Season 1 of Package Deal was pitched to TV writers and the viewing public as a series to watch because it was a rare Canadian primetime laffer shot with multiple cameras, a rarity here though commonplace in the U.S., Season 2 is a focus on the characters. Now that creator and executive producer Andrew Orenstein and the writers know what the cast can do, Edwards explains, they’ve let ‘em rip. Aside from the main cast, Jill Morrison (When Calls the Heart) has been upped from recurring to a full-time cast member as Nikki, Kim’s acerbic friend and co-worker.

Every series goes through some growing pains, and Season 1 of Package Deal was no different. You could see the cast getting more comfortable in their roles and in front of the live studio audience (a sitcom was a first for both Edwards and Voth) but by the end everyone was firing on all cylinders. Friday’s return is one of a cast that know their characters intimately and are game to play them.

Jumping into the sand box to play as guest stars are Amanda Tapping (Sanctuary) and Jason Priestley (Call Me Fitz).

“Amanda plays my boss, and she’s just fantastic. A total pro,” Edwards enthuses. He laughs when he admits to being a little in awe of Priestley, who comes on board to portray Storm Chambers, a slick, over-the-top TV weatherman.

“In one scene I’m in his face, yelling at him and I just kind of zoned out for a second, and Jason said to me, quietly, ‘I know, I know,'” Edwards recalls. “And he was saying that because he knew I was thrown off by working with him. This guy was on posters in my sister’s bedroom!”

Package Deal airs Fridays at 9 p.m. ET on City.

Link: Writers Guild of Canada: Keep Canada’s TV industry strong

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The Writers Guild of Canada (WGC) urges the CRTC to maintain a vibrant, healthy Canadian television industry. A strong industry will ensure the creation of the high quality programs the Commission has stated it desires.

The WGC appeared at the CRTC’s “Let’s Talk TV” hearing today, representing the viewpoint of talented Canadian writers who create shows that millions of fans watch, shows such as Murdoch MysteriesOrphan BlackDegrassi, and Rookie Blue. Continue reading.

Link: Dragons’ Den rookie Michael Wekerle

From Mary Teresa Bitti of the Financial Post:

Dragons’ Den rookie and former Bay Street bad boy Michael Wekerle isn’t afraid to make deals
Today, the tattooed single father of six is chief executive of fast-growing merchant-banking firm Difference Capital and one of two rookie dragons on Season 9 of Dragons’ Den. Here he shares what motivates him and what it takes to succeed. Continue reading.