My wish list: Fall On Your Knees and other CanLit in development

Remember way back when we did a poll about the Canadian literature adaptations you’d most like to see on CBC? Coppermine by Keith Ross Leckie got the most votes, with a host of other novels making the list.

Some of those books were or are already in development, so now here’s my top 5 list of  those already inching their way to our TV screens, in order of preference.

  1. Fall on Your Knees by Ann-Marie MacDonald 
    An Oprah’s book club pick, this novel by one of my favourite authors has been in development for what seems like forever — though maybe that’s just the watched pot rule. Executive producer Sharon Mustos tells me the latest scoop: “I have partnered with Shaftesbury Films/Christina Jennings to bring this wonderful story to life. We hope to announce a writer and broadcast partner very soon.”
  2. The Orenda by Joseph Boyden
    It feels like the news about this Canada Reads winner in development as a mini-series with Robert Redford should be making a bigger splash. It seems to be an open secret in the Canadian TV world and is referenced on unsplashy websites. I’m told it’s being shopped around US networks by a “very respected Canadian showrunner.”
  3. Solomon Gursky Was Here by Mordecai Richler 
    With money from the Harold Greenberg Fund’s Script Development Program a few years ago, this novel was in development through Serendipity Point Films. Will it ever make it to our screens? You’d need the wisdom of Solomon to know.
  4. Caught by Lisa Moore
    Alan Hawco caught the rights to this books, teaming with Entertainment One for a series announced shortly before the end of Republic of Doyle last fall. The show is being developed for CBC.
  5. John Cardinal mystery series by Giles Blunt
    It’s been a while since news has emerged on this popular book series turning to TV, after the author was quoted a couple years ago saying he’s written the first episode of the series in development for CTV. But stranger mysteries have happened than a series popping up years later.

Do you have news on shows in development? Comment or send me an email.


2 thoughts on “My wish list: Fall On Your Knees and other CanLit in development”

  1. Well, I’d like it if Shaftsbury continued with Gail Bowen’s “Joanne Kilbourn” murder mystery series. They adapted her first six novels and she’s currently up to book #15 in the series, and they could also pick up Maureen Jennings’ new detective series, of which there’s three novels currently. The second book in this series really has a “Bomb Girls” feel to it (although the series is set in England) and it’s no wonder why– she’s the genius behind “Bomb Girls”!!
    Any of Miriam Toews’ novels, I’d watch! Going back quite a ways– I read a couple of years ago a book by Matt Cohen entitled, “Johnny Crackle Sings” — it’s kinda Hard Core Logo-ish, also a dash of “Whale Music” in there as well. Looking at my Goodreads list, I notice I read Douglas Coupland’s “Eleanor Rigby”. It was pretty enjoyable. Another murder mystery I read is entitled “Illegally Dead” and is by a local writer here in Port Alberni, B.C., (though the novel is set in central/southern Alberta). Years ago, I’d heard that David Bergen’s “The Case of Lena S.” was in contention for production, (I’m not sure if that’s fallen through) as well as “Mist On The River” (a novel originally released in 1954). I wonder if Hubert Aquin’s classic “Next Episode” (1965) has crossed any Quebec producer’s mind as being suitable… Alison Gordon’s baseball themed murder mysteries are intriguing…. Laurence Gough’s “Willows and Parker” mystery series reminded me of DaVinci’s Inquest when I read them. (Set in Vancouver). Rawi Hage’s novels are very very very compelling reads, (DeNiro’s Game, Cockroach, Carnival) and years ago when Sparkle Hayter was interviewed on TV about her detective series, she was asked who she thought would make a great Robin Hudson, Hayter replied, drats! I don’t remember now!!

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