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TV,eh? What's up in Canadian television

Link: Schitt’s Creek becomes first Canadian comedy series nominated for a Critics’ Choice Award

From Debra Yeo of the Toronto Star:

Link: Schitt’s Creek becomes first Canadian comedy series nominated for a Critics’ Choice Award
The cast and producers of the CBC comedy series Schitt’s Creek are celebrating the show’s inclusion in the 2019 Critics’ Choice Awards.

The program, about a rich family who go bust and are forced to live in a small town they bought as a joke, is nominated for Best Comedy Series in the annual awards, which honour both film and television. Continue reading.


Smash hit Heavy Rescue: 401 charges into Season 3 beginning Jan. 8 on Discovery

From a media release:

Discovery’s smash hit original Canadian series HEAVY RESCUE: 401 returns with 14 new episodes this winter, chronicling dramatic recoveries along Ontario’s 400-series highways – extending from Windsor in the west to the Québec border in the east. A Top 5 series on Discovery last season, Season 3 of HEAVY RESCUE: 401 airs Tuesdays at 10 p.m. ET / 7 p.m. PT beginning Tuesday, Jan. 8 on Discovery.

From the makers of Discovery’s fan-favourite series HIGHWAY THRU HELL, HEAVY RESCUE: 401 tells the dramatic stories of heavy recovery tow truck drivers who continue the good fight across one of North America’s busiest and most unforgiving series of highways. The stakes are high, every minute counts, and every job is vital…because closure is not an option.

An advanced vehicle safety technology leader, Toyota returns as proud sponsor of the third season of HEAVY RESCUE: 401.

About Season 3 of HEAVY RESCUE: 401:

The new season of HEAVY RESCUE: 401 promises to surprise audiences with nail-biting drama, chronicling familiar characters stepping up to bigger responsibilities, incredible stories of wintery wrecks, and dangerous challenges with new trucks. Storms and freak accidents attack the 401, pushing first responders, heavy rescue crews, and maintenance teams to their limits.

After making a big move to the competition, Sonny Subra faces another major decision about his direction in heavy rescue – and new pressure when he gets the opportunity of his career. In the snowbelt north of the city, Bubba Semple gets an opportunity of his own at Classic Towing – but it’s one that will challenge him at every turn.

At Preferred Towing in Sarnia, Ont., Gary Vandenheuvel’s crew faces a whiteout blitz lasting for days. However, his biggest challenge comes when his son Collin is faced with a dangerous close call.

Down in Windsor, Ont., Eric Goddard of Coxon’s Towing works to train a new generation of heavy operators. And when a raging river destroys a bridge and strands a dump truck, it forces Ross’ Towing to embark on a bigger recovery than anything they’ve ever attempted.

At the eastern end of the province, Scrappy Algonquin Towing enlists 50-year-old hardware in the fight against a frozen pileup, Herb’s Towing works to rebuild after a huge shakeup in the crew, and David Davidson at Unique Towing fights a lonely battle that will ultimately end his career on the road.

HEAVY RESCUE: 401 continues to work closely with the Ontario Provincial Police and Sgt. Kerry Schmidt to execute on-the-spot accident reconstructions, manage pileups, and oversee toxic spills. Once again this season, the series follows the crew at the Ontario Ministry of Transportation’s massive control centre to get a bird’s-eye view of the intricate and high-stakes highway system.

Subscribers can access live streaming of HEAVY RESCUE: 401 through the Discovery app, and stream Season 1 and 2 on demand on the Discovery app and

HEAVY RESCUE: 401 is produced by Thunderbird Entertainment Group Inc. in association with Discovery Canada. Executive Producer is Mark Miller. Series producer is Todd Serotiuk.


Netflix partners with Quebec Cinema on new talent lab

From a media release:

Québec Cinéma is proud to announce a three-year partnership with Netflix to set up a Talent Lab, a brand-new program created expressly to mentor and coach emerging artists and professionals by outstanding world-renowned experts. This unique learning opportunity is designed to both challenge and help the next generation of Québec filmmakers in their career path.

Intended to take place during the Rendez-vous Québec Cinéma, the very first of three editions of the Talent Lab will take place in February 2020. A call for entries will be held to select a group of handpicked young professionals, who will have the chance to develop and refine their skills through mentoring sessions, conferences, discussions and master classes given by Quebec and internationally renowned film industry professionals. Considering its values of equality and diversity, Québec Cinéma will encourage the participation of women and members of Native as well as francophone communities from across Canada.

“Training and mentoring emerging talent has been a part of our mission since our beginnings. This partnership with Netflix allows us to do more in that regard by providing our future filmmakers with real-life experiences and the opportunity to learn from the best minds in the industry,” says Ségolène Roederer, Executive Director at Québec Cinéma.

By creating this unique Talent Lab in partnership with Netflix, Québec Cinéma will allow participants to access concrete tools that will enable them to learn about every aspect of the industry—from creative to marketing strategy and everything in between.

This partnership is part of Netflix’s $25 million commitment to invest in local cultural organizations and events to support new and diverse Canadian talent, including women, francophone and indigenous creators.

“Netflix is delighted to partner with Québec Cinéma to develop a mentorship program created specifically to support emerging artists from here,” said Funa Maduka, Director of International Original Films, Production and Acquisition, at Netflix. “We are always on the lookout for the best stories, which is why we are happy to invest in programs such as the Talent Lab, to support emerging filmmakers who will go on to create stories for Canada and the rest of the world.”


Comments and queries for the week of December 14

When does the new season of Highway Thru Hell start? I live in the States and I like to watch that show and what station will carry the show? —Jack

Highway Thru Hell is currently in production on a new season. Its spinoff, Heavy Rescue: 401 returns for Season 3 of January 8 on Discovery.

[The Det. Watts-centred] episode [of Murdoch Mysteries] speaks to the versatility and depth of a very young and competent actor. The role is very well written and [Daniel] Maslany does each performance more than justice. Everyone is still figuring out where he fits in the Murdoch Matrix. That’s OK. No matter what, this talented young craftsman bears watching. I will be following his career. Daniel, you have yourself another fan. Keep up the good work. —Patricia

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