Tag Archives: Anna Paquin

WGN secures rights to Bellevue

WGN America announced today that it has acquired the exclusive U.S. linear rights to the gripping original drama series Bellevue which was commissioned originally by the CBC network and is being broadcast in French in Canada by V-télé, starring Academy® and Golden Globe® winner Anna Paquin (True Blood).

Produced by Muse Entertainment and Back Alley Film Productions, the eight-episode, one-hour drama also stars Shawn Doyle (House of Cards) and Allen Leech (Downton Abbey). Bellevue will premiere in early 2018 on WGN America.

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Season 2 of Bellevue being developed, but show seeks a new home

It turns out Bellevue‘s fate is as mysterious as the show itself. After reporting last Friday that a second season was being developed for CBC came a troubling update: there is no home for the Anna Paquin-Shawn Doyle led series after all.

Co-creator, Episode 1 director and executive producer Adrienne Mitchell contacted TV, Eh? on Tuesday night with the following information:

“To clarify, though Season 2 of Bellevue has been in development with CBC, unfortunately, production of a follow-up season is currently not moving forward,” Mitchell wrote. “We are incredibly proud of our talented cast and crew who worked so tirelessly to bring this beautiful series to life. We also feel there are more stories to tell and we’ll be looking for other opportunities to bring this to fruition. In a town like Bellevue, the future is never as it seems!”

Fellow Bellevue co-creator Jane Maggs is going to be part of next month’s Writers Talking TV event—find details on how to attend that here—and we’re sure the topic of a new home for the program will come up. Produced by Mitchell and Janis Lundman’s Back Alley Film Productions Ltd. and Muse Entertainment Enterprises, Bellevue was co-created by Mitchell and Maggs with the latter serving as senior writer, executive producer and co-showrunner with Mitchell.

Season 1 of Bellevue starred Anna Paquin as Annie Rider, a brilliant but troubled cop in the town of Bellevue whose past returned to haunt her following the death of a transgender teen. During the course of her investigation, old wounds were opened and secrets revealed, putting her at odds with her ex-husband, Eddie (Allen Leech), her superior, Police Chief Peter Welland (Shawn Doyle) and putting the relationship with her daughter, Daisy (Madison Ferguson) in jeopardy. Season 1 also starred Billy MacLellan, Sharon Taylor, Janine Theriault, Amber Goldfarb and Sadie O’Neil.

Listen to Maggs discuss her career and the creation of Bellevue during our recent podcast and read Carolyn Potts’ reviews; here’s the link to her season finale review.

Where do you think Bellevue should go if it doesn’t return to CBC? Comment below.

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Photo gallery: CBC’s Alias Grace

A full summer of programming is still ahead of us—hello Killjoys, Wynonna Earp, Dark Matter and Orphan Black—but CBC has got us excited for the fall.

The network announced earlier today that Alias Grace debuts Monday, Sept. 25, at 9 p.m. on CBC. Based on Margaret Atwood’s award-winning novel and inspired by true events, the six episodes are written and produced by Sarah Polley and directed by Mary Harron. The miniseries tells the story of Grace Marks (Sarah Gadon), an Irish immigrant and domestic servant in Upper Canada who—along with James McDermott (Kerr Logan), a stable hand—is accused and convicted of the infamous 1843 murders of her employer, wealthy farmer Thomas Kinnear (Paul Gross), and his housekeeper, Nancy Montgomery (Anna Paquin).

Here’s a sneak peek gallery of some of the key cast. Are you as excited about Alias Grace as we are? Let us know in the comments below!

 

Alias Grace debuts Monday, Sept. 25, at 9 p.m. (9:30 NT) on CBC.

Images courtesy of CBC.

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Bellevue: “Love Hurts,” plus a chat with co-creator Jane Maggs

Spoiler alert! Do not read until you’ve watched Episode 8 of Bellevue

[Make sure to check out my chat with Bellevue co-creator Jane Maggs after this review.]

When we last met following last week’s episode of Bellevue, Brady (Billy MacLellan) lay dead across the hood of his truck and Annie (Anna Paquin) was handcuffed inside. Tonight, we find out it is Adam (Patrick Labbé) who saved his little sister. Adam “tried a different way to end the cycle” with Annie, whatever “cycle” means. So even though the man responsible for Jesse’s (Sadie O’Neil) murder is now dead, this final episode solves the Sandy Driver’s murder. We will also learn how that murder is connected to Jesse’s death. And finally, what everyone wants to know: what did Adam tell Peter in the confessional? It becomes Adam’s mission to close the story on Sandy Driver. No one yet understands, but Jane Maggs ties this all up with a great big bow for us.

Police arrive at the scene of the accident, and Peter (Shawn Doyle) confides to Annie he just wants Adam dead. Eddie (Allen Leech), fighting for his family and his relationship with Annie, arrives to take Annie home and tells her to just let it all go—for the sake their relationship and for the sake of Daisy (Madison Ferguson)— to just “walk away.”  But can she? Of course, she doesn’t. If she did, we would not have much of an ending!

Adam plays the Pied Piper and manages to capture his three little rats. First, he lures Tom (Vincent Leclerc) to the path in the woods with a recording of his daughter, and to his trap—literally. Once caught, Adam carves the name “Sandy” into Tom’s chest and leaves him to die … or not. Annie, Peter and Virginia (Sharon Taylor) reach him in time.

Annie and Peter decide to pay a visit to Maggie (Victoria Sanchez) for answers. Maggie reveals the four of them—Tom, Jameson (Joe Cobden) and Mother (Janine Theriault)—and she formed a blood pact in the old New Horizon’s shed. They all had their parts. Tom used the watch Maggie stole to lure Sandy to the woods, Jameson humiliated Sandy—he liked his girls dirty—and Mother did everything. “She planned it.”

Peter then ties the clue, “The lion has come to lay waste to the land,” to the waste that was thrown at Sandy. Adam is leading them to his victims. At the landfill we find Jameson, hanging from a crane, with the name Sandy carved in his forehead. Questioning of Jameson reveals that Lily locked Sandy in the shed because Sandy got the role of Mary, the role Lily felt was hers. “You didn’t take things from Lily back then.”

So now, where is Lily? There are no clues. Annie has the whole story. Lily is not meant to be found. Adam killed Sandy. So why is Adam leading Annie on this path? Because Annie needs to understand why he killed Sandy. Annie has the answer and now we also understand why her father killed himself. He didn’t do it because he couldn’t solve Sandy’s murder but rather because he did.

Sandy’s murder was the first clue, the clue Annie needs to solve in order to find Lily on time. Sandy was posed, pointing to town: “no sin; find me where there is none.” It is not original sin, but no sin. There was “no sin” in Sandy’s death. Adam needs for Annie to understand that Sandy’s death was merciful. And what happens to sit on Mercy Street? The brewery that Mother is trying to get up and running to bring jobs back to Bellevue.

The key players from the department converge on the brewery and discover first a dead lily, and then a crate hidden within piles of dirt. Hops? Barley? At any rate, Peter takes over the dig and reveals the wooden crate. He pries it open to discover Mother alive inside.

All right, so our main players involved in bringing Sandy to the point of wanting to die have been tortured and rescued, but that leaves Adam still out there, misunderstood. Annie still needs to understand. And how best to do so? Daisy. Adam goes to Annie’s while Daisy is home and Daisy lets him in—despite having seen the wall of creepy clues and pictures in her home—and Daisy gets to know her uncle.  She intimates she wishes she had an end to her project and Adam takes her to the forest to show her the ending.

Eddie, realizing Daisy is missing, freaks out and chases Annie down at the brewery. They go on a hunt to find Daisy and Adam in the woods where Peter joins them. Adam lays a trail, in keeping with his doll theme, to lead Annie to Daisy. Once found, Annie sends Daisy back to her father and talks with Adam. He explains that he just wanted Annie to understand how tortured he was to not be a part of things. How betrayed he felt by the actions of their father. And it was whilst in his rage that he discovered Sandy, locked in the shed. It was in Sandy he found someone who was living with just as much pain as he. Sandy’s death was a suicide pact but Adam ultimately could not follow through with that act.

Now, years later, he has come back to finally end the cycle and pretends to attempt to kill Annie, but tells her to “just do it.” Annie does, killing her own brother; finishing the cycle.

In the aftermath, Annie and Eddie pack up to move. Annie can finally leave the family home. And we see Danny (Cameron Roberts) sitting down with Maggie to share his movies of Jesse.  But wait, we still don’t know what Adam said to Peter…

“There is just one thing I would like to say before this all ends happily for you. You love her. You’ve loved her ever since she was a kid, and you have just been waiting and waiting for her to grow up. So you can just…” And that was so very evident on Peter’s face as Annie, Daisy and Eddie drove away.

I caught up with Jane Maggs and asked her to share some thoughts now that Bellevue Season 1 is complete.

First, How do you feel now that you see this come full circle, from project conception to tonight, completion?
Jane Maggs: I feel incredibly thankful for everyone who came together to make this thing that at one point was just a paragraph on a piece of paper. The calibre of people we had in every role was humbling to me daily.

And perhaps if you could share a memory from shooting the show that has not yet been shared, something that will, say 10 years from now still be with you?
On our last day of shooting I was late because I as doing some second unit stuff and I showed up (we were in a studio that day). I walked to the studio door and before I went in one of the crew members told me “Billy [MacLellan] is nailing it in there.” It was the day we were filming the stuff at the end of Episode 7 and he was nailing it. But I was struck mostly by the feeling of unity that our cast and crew felt, really part of something and proud and invested personally. That was underscored by the fact that I went in and there was cast there who were not even shooting that day but wanted to be around, support Billy, Anna, Sadie and Amber who were all shooting some intense stuff. It’s a day I won’t forget.

Well, that is all Bellevue-ites! No word as yet if there is a Season 2 somewhere in the future, but this has been a great ride! And thank you to Jane Maggs to take some time out of her day to touch base.

What did you think of Season 1 of Bellevue? Let us know in the comments below.

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Bellevue: Did you hear the one about the mayor, the priest, and the hockey coach?

**SPOILER ALERT** Do NOT read if you have not watched Episode 7 of Bellevue!

THAT episode of Bellevue was FREAKING INSANE! The kind of blow your mind storyline twists that we have come to expect from shows like The Walking Dead or Game of Thrones. Seriously! Bellevue may not be as epic or grand scale, but the twists are just as effective for dragging viewers down the rabbit hole.

So let’s get it out of the way right now … Brady killed Jesse! WHAT?!? Did ANYONE SEE that coming? To quote Annie Ryder: “ARE YOU FUCKING KIDDING ME?!?” Turns out Brady, in an effort to talk Jesse (Sadie O’Neil) out of leaving town revealed to her that he was secretly in love with his sister Briana (Amber Goldfarb). Jesse’s repulsion sealed her doom, and Brady was forced to kill to keep his secret safe.

But let’s backtrack and sort out how we got there. We know Tom’s (Vincent Leclerc) alibi is blown because of his raving wife Jackie (Marianne Farley), and Peter (Shawn Doyle) calls him in for questioning. Tom finally admits he did pick Jesse up and took him to the church so that he, Lily (Janine Theriault), and Father Jay (Joe Cobden) can “talk some sense into him” and “get him on the right path again.”

Upset by all of this talk Jesse ran out of the church. She never got back into Tom’s truck. So now we know there is another white truck out there and Annie figures out that someone else was present in the church, lurking behind the curtain.

Meanwhile, we learn that The Riddler is Annie’s brother! Somehow she had entirely forgotten about him! Adam (Patrick Labbé) who at the age of 12—when Annie was three—was shunned by his father and sent away to military school because of his obsessive behaviour towards Annie. Now he is back, living in the woods, and keeping tabs on Annie with a police radio. Up until recently, he had been working at the local diner as a dishwasher under the alias Bobby Storms. Peter runs the alias through CPIC and calls up his list of priors including B&E’s, assault and a few counts of arson. Peter and Annie revisit areas in the woods Annie knows her brother frequented. Peter spots a campfire and they find Adam’s shelter. Peter pockets a note Adam intended for Annie, while Annie slips into the shelter and recognizes all of her possessions. Memories of her brother come flooding back.

Peter runs down the latest riddle at the church’s soup kitchen. Here he catches Adam off guard. Now, this is where our producers get a little audacious as they toy with viewers. Words are exchanged and are deliberately garbled for the audience. Adam says something that shocks Peter, but we are not privy to Adam’s message for Peter. Adam makes his escape leaving yet one more clue. Paraphrasing scripture from Jeremiah 4:7, and  loosely translated: “An impending calamity is about to happen; the final act of destruction.” Cheery thought, that.

On the Annie-Eddie (Allen Leech) front, Eddie is planning a move. He intends to take Daisy (Madison Ferguson) with him, and if Annie is not coming with them, he plans on fighting for custody. In the meantime Daisy, while hanging out with Bethany (Emelia Hellman) at the site where Jesse’s body was found, falls into the water. And conveniently, for investigative purposes, it happens a parasitic bacteria is present in the lake that requires a specific course of antibiotics to clear up. This means whoever killed Jesse would also require that same course of treatment. Whoever has recently been prescribed nitazoxanide would be a worthy suspect for Jesse’s murder.

Back at the station, Virginia (Sharon Taylor) picks up on an inconsistency with a CI account, and Brady is that CI’s contact. Annie decides to drop in on Brady and clearly, her spidey sense is tingling. Feigning a need to use the washroom, she checks through Brady’s medicine cabinet and garbage and there it is: nitazoxanide. Brady knows the jig is up and takes off in his truck. Annie looks in his garage and there she spots a white pickup truck, which we later find out belongs to Briana, registered in Sudbury. Unbeknownst to Annie, Brady is doubling back and takes her at gunpoint just as her call connects to Peter’s voicemail. Brady admits to being the man behind the curtain, and that he killed Jesse. And just as he is about to kill Annie, someone shows up in their own truck hitting Brady and sending his body into the windshield. Roll the credits!

Who is in need of some therapy after that episode? Huge shout out to Billy MacLellan for his performance in this episode, I was right there with him, feeling his emotional pain during his confession to Annie. Bravo!

And another shout out to Anna Paquin and Allen Leech for their hot and steamy scene! Beautifully done!

Now we know who killed Jesse, but what is the connection to Sandy Driver? Who killed her and why? We only have one episode left! Let me know your thoughts in the comments below!

The season finale of Bellevue airs Monday at 9 p.m. on CBC.

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