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TV,eh? What's up in Canadian television

Little Mosque on the Prairie premiere date

From CBC:

Ground-Breaking New Comedy Series Little Mosque on the Prairie Debuts Tuesday, Jan. 9 at 8:30 p.m. on CBC Television

Welcome to Mercy, small town Canada with a little Muslim twist! LITTLE MOSQUE ON THE PRAIRIE, an unabashedly comedic look at a small Muslim community living side by side the residents of a little prairie town, premieres Tuesday, Jan. 9 at 8: 30 p.m. on CBC Television, following The Rick Mercer Report. An encore presentation will air Wednesday, Jan. 10 at 8 p.m. And beginning Monday, Jan. 15, the anticipated series moves to its regular timeslot at 9 p.m., repeating Wednesdays at 8 p.m.

This highly entertaining, witty comedy leaps into uncharted waters by openly addressing Muslim and Canadian stereotypes for the first time on Canadian television. The story unfolds in the fictional community of Mercy, as the town tries to cope with the little mosque that recently opened its doors inside the local Anglican parish hall. At its heart, LITTLE MOSQUE ON THE PRAIRIE is a humorous look at relationships, family, love, the generation gap and balancing Muslim beliefs and traditions in a prairie setting.

The inspiration for the storylines come from the personal experiences of the show’s creator, Zarqa Nawaz, a Muslim and mother of four who moved west to Regina with her family a decade ago. A former CBC Radio producer, Nawaz began making short comedic films about Muslims in 1996. Her highly acclaimed 2005 documentary Me and the Mosque aired earlier this season on CBC Newsworld.

“The best rule in comedy is write what you know, the more serious the issue, the more fun I try to have with it,” said Nawaz. “A television series provided a perfect vehicle to explore the dynamics of the Muslim and non-Muslim community in Canada.”

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US Syndication sales for Degrassi: The Next Generation

From Thunderbird Films:

CTV’s Hit Original Drama Tops 60% Clearance for September 2007 Launch

Thunderbird Films and its U.S. distribution partners, Program Partners, today announced several major U.S. market and station group clearances for CTV’s acclaimed original dramatic series, Degrassi: The Next Generation. These deals take the hit half-hour series past the 60% mark including all 5 of the Top 5 markets; 8 of the Top 10; with 15 of the Top 20 and 18 of the Top 25 for its launch as a syndication strip for Fall 2007. This news follows closely on the heels of the two companies’ successful U.S. launches of Canadian dramas Da Vinci’s Inquest, Cold Squad and Stone Undercover into weekly syndication.

The Degrassi launch is anchored by a Tribune Broadcasting group-wide commitment, with additional clearances from stations in the Belo, Clear Channel, Granite, Gray, Hubbard, and Pegasus groups and The CW PLUS stations.

“We are thrilled to have such an honored Canadian series receive such enthusiastic support from U.S. broadcasters,” commented Michael Shepard, President, Thunderbird Films. “It confirms the production quality and universal appeal of Canadian product in the world market.”

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Upcoming episodes: Degrassi: The Next Generation, CTV, Dec. 12

From CTV:

8 p.m. ET – Degrassi: The Next Generation – “Eyes Without at Face, Part 1”
Peter, hoping to join the Spirit Squad, links Darcy’s personal web page to his. Darcy is thrilled with all the attention and hits she gets, and even posts some racy pictures of the Spirit Squad. It seems like a great way to raise money for new uniforms – but how far will it go?

8:30 p.m. ET – Degrassi: The Next Generation – “Eyes Without at Face, Part 2”
Darcy’s online admirers take up more and more of her time, and her relationship with Spinner suffers. As Darcy posts increasingly sexy photos of herself, she’s surprised when her favourite online fan decides to introduce himself.