From a media release:
Canwest Broadcasting announced today that Global’s new Canadian miniseries “The Last Templar” from Muse Entertainment Enterprises has been picked-up by U.S. network NBC and will be simulcast with Global this December. The romantic adventure stars Oscar(R) winner Mira Sorvino (“Mighty Aphrodite”) and Canadian Victor Garber (“Alias”).
The four-hour-long exotic miniseries, based on Raymond Khoury’s best-selling novel, is being revised for the screen by multiple award-winning Canadian writer and producer Suzette Couture (“Million Dollar Babies”, “Road to Avonlea”) – her first production for Canwest. Shooting will begin on location in Montreal and Morocco next month.
“Global is thrilled to bring this incredible story to Canadian audiences – and delighted that Americans will also have the chance to see it on NBC,” said Barbara Williams, Executive Vice President, Content, Canwest Broadcasting. “This partnership with Muse Entertainment underscores Canwest’s commitment to work with the Canadian independent production community and create exciting, high quality and popular original programming for our audiences.”
Today’s announcement follows an exceptional year of successful original productions for Canwest. Global’s homegrown version of the hit international game show, “Deal or No Deal Canada” (Insight Productions) was seen by over 2 million viewers last winter – making it the most-watched Canadian series on any network in 2007. Since the fall, Canwest has also had tremendous ratings success with original series, “The Guard” (Halifax Film Company and Brightlight Pictures), “‘da Kink in my Hair” (Barna Alper Productions), and the wildly popular “Are You Smarter Than A Canadian Fifth Grader?” (Insight Productions).
In “The Last Templar”, Mira Sorvino stars as Tess Chaykin, a Manhattan archaeologist who is drawn into a fast-paced mystery concerning the lost secrets of the medieval Templar Knights. Victor Garber co-stars as the Monsignor De Angelis.
“The Last Templar” opens with the fall of the Latin Kingdom’s reign in the Holy Land in Acre in 1291. As the burning city falls to the Sultan’s forces, a lone galley escapes out to sea, carrying a young Templar knight, Martin of Carmaux, his mentor Aimard of Villiers, and a mysterious chest entrusted to them by the Order’s dying Grand Master. But the ship never reaches its destination.
Later, in present-day New York, Chaykin (Sorvino) witnesses four masked horsemen, dressed as Templar Knights, who storm into the Metropolitan Museum, scattering Manhattan society gathered for the gala opening night of an exhibition of Vatican treasures. She watches in silent terror as the leader of the horsemen hones in on one piece in particular – a strange-geared device that he grabs as he disappears into Central Park.
As the horsemen’s dead bodies start turning up – and the importance of the stolen device becomes more apparent – Tess and FBI Agent Sean Reilly are drawn into the dark, hidden history of the crusading Knights, and of the last surviving Templars’ fateful journey from Acre. The pair is propelled into a treacherous adventure that takes them through the sewers of Manhattan, across continents to desolate Turkish highlands to a violent storm on the Mediterranean that shipwrecks them onto a remote Greek island – and into the very heart of an incredible Vatican secret.
Sorvino, who won the Best Supporting Actress Academy Award for her performance in “Mighty Aphrodite” in 1995, first attracted attention for her early work in such feature films as “Barcelona”, “Quiz Show” and “Beautiful Girls”. Sorvino’s television movies include “Norma Jean & Marilyn”, “The Great Gatsby” and “Human Trafficking”.
The six-time Emmy Award-nominated Victor Garber is best known for the role of Jack Bristow in the series “Alias”. His other credits have included “Ugly Betty” and “Will and Grace”. Film credits include “Titanic”, “Legally Blonde” and “Tuck Everlasting”.