All posts by Greg David

Prior to becoming a television critic and owner of TV, Eh?, Greg David was a critic for TV Guide Canada, the country's most trusted source for TV news. He has interviewed television actors, actresses and behind-the-scenes folks from hundreds of television series from Canada, the U.S. and internationally. He is a podcaster, public speaker, weekly radio guest and educator, and past member of the Television Critics Association.

Corus Entertainment bids farewell to Big Brother Canada

From a media release:

After 12 incredible seasons, Corus Entertainment has made the decision to end Big Brother Canada.  The series has been a leader in the reality TV space, always prioritizing the rich diversity of Canada in front of and behind the camera, and Corus is extremely proud of its unprecedented success across our platforms over the last 12 seasons.

“Today as we say goodbye to the beloved series, we celebrate the great success and impact Big Brother Canada has had in our country and in the Canadian media landscape for over a decade. Global will always be proud to have been home to Big Brother Canada for 12 seasons, and we are grateful to our partners at Banijay Rights for their support and guidance, and Insight Productions for their passion, dedication, and creativity. We would like to thank Executive Producer Erin Brock and Host and Executive Producer Arisa Cox for always leading thought-provoking conversations, telling uniquely Canadian stories, and the diverse culture of Canada in one of television’s biggest social experiments. This series, and the production team behind it, have truly set the bar in creating entertaining unscripted television. And finally, to our #BBCAN fanbase, you have all kept the series thriving and we thank you for joining us on this journey for the last 12 seasons.” – Troy Reeb, Co-Chief Executive Officer, Corus Entertainment

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AMI-tv announces second season of Access Tech Live

From a media release:

Accessible Media Inc. (AMI) is thrilled to announce the renewal of its hit AMI-tv show, Access Tech Live, for a second season. Hosted by Steven Scott and Marc Aflalo, Access Tech Live focuses on the intersection of technology and accessibility.

Following an incredibly successful first season, Access Tech Live has become a platform for important conversations about accessibility and inclusivity. The show has featured interviews with some of the biggest names in tech, including Jay Blahnik, Vice President of Fitness Technologies at Apple; Stephanie Cadieux, Canada’s Chief Accessibility Officer; Caroline Casey, founder of The Valuable 500; Google’s Head of Accessibility and Disability and Inclusion, Christopher Patnoe; and Sarah Herrlinger, Senior Director of Global Accessibility at Apple; amongst many others.

Access Tech Live‘s mission is to tell tech stories from the point of view of people with disabilities and has had important conversations around Global Accessibility Awareness Day, Autism Awareness Month and Parkinson’s Awareness Month.

The show has broadcast live from locations around the globe, including CES 2024 in Las Vegas, the Zero Project Conference in Vienna, CES Unveiled in Amsterdam, the CSUN Conference in California, and, most recently, a special episode for International Albinism Awareness Day in Halifax.

“We aren’t afraid to push the boundaries on the places we go and conversations we have,” says host Steven Scott.

Access Tech Live has connected with AMI-tv viewers in an unprecedented way,” says John Melville, Vice-President of Content Development and Operations of AMI-tv/AMI-audio. “We’re looking forward to a new season of Steven and Marc’s conversations discussing how technology can benefit people of all abilities.”

Stay tuned for more exciting discussions and interviews in the second season of Access Tech Live, only on AMI-tv. Stream past episodes for free and on demand at AMI+.

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AMI-tv announces 2024-25 production slate

From a media release:

Accessible Media Inc. (AMI) is pleased to announce its 2024-25 production slate for AMI-tv and AMI+. Telling a wide range of authentic stories about Canadians in the disability community through positive portrayal, these new and returning projects promise to be favourites with viewers.

AMI is currently in production on new scripted and docuseries from Big Time Decent Productions, Canadian Content Studios, Flow Video, Summerhill Media Inc., Border2Border Entertainment, Prairie Cat Productions, Bone Vault Inc. and Catapult Pictures.

“We are thrilled to offer over 100 hours of programming to Canadians of all abilities,” said Cara Nye, Director, Content Development and Production at AMI. “The upcoming broadcast season sees the expansion of our scripted stable of shows and provides, for the very first time, a children’s series to our schedule.”

New Series

After Dark (working title) – 8 x 30 digital series
After Dark is a documentary digital series exploring sex, love, dating and relationships relevant to people with disabilities. From sex surrogacy, virginity, manufacturing ergonomically designed sex toys, and sex parties to navigating online dating and the sharing of romantic/sexual wants and needs with family and friends, After Dark dares to illuminate your world of possibilities. After Dark is produced by Border2Border Entertainment (Womb EnvyAvocado Toast, Drag Heals).

Collar of Duty Kids – 8 x 30 children’s docuseries
Collar of Duty Kids takes young viewers into the lives of amazing kids who’ve been matched with extraordinary service animals. It’s all about these brand-new partnerships and the adventures they get up to. If you are thinking just dogs, you’re in for a surprise because we are talking about creatures from parrots to pigs! Collar of Duty Kids is produced by Summerhill Media Inc. (There’s Something You Should Know, Collar of Duty) in association with Fifth Ground Entertainment.

The Crip Trip – 6 x 60 docuseries
The Crip Trip is a punk-rock, gonzo, road trip comedy following the misadventures of artist, filmmaker, and quadruple amputee Daniel Ennett and his producer/friend/caregiver Frederick Kroetsch as they drive from Edmonton to Toronto. Their goal: to secure employment for Daniel in the television industry thereby saving him from long term care. Along the way, the duo will meet with other artists in the disability community to hear their stories. The Crip Trip is produced by Catapult Pictures (The Secret Society, Blind Ambition: The Wop May Story).

Get Hooked – 7 x 30 docuseries
This isn’t your dad’s fishing show. In partnership with OutTV, Get Hooked is a fresh take on how members of the queer, Black, Indigenous and disability community turn the mental health benefits of fishing into pure joy. Get Hooked is produced by Heidi Lynch of Bone Vault Inc. (Avocado Toast, Finding Green) and will feature the British disability advocate and comedian Rosie Jones along with other diverse nature lovers. Other partners include the Bell Fund, Ontario Creates and CAMH.

Low Vision Moments (working title) – 6 x 30 scripted comedy
Based on the life of Jennie Bovard, the candid host of the AMI podcast Low Vision Moments, viewers are in for a blurry ride, as Jennie fumbles and finds her way through everyday life as a person with albinism and low vision—work, friendship, love, and waving at mailboxes. Low Vision Moments is produced by Jennie Bovard, Jonathan Torrens’ Canadian Content Studios (Vollies, Roll With It) Club Red Productions (Who’s Yer Father?, A Small Fortune) and Flow Video Inc. (DarkVision, Accessing Pleasure).

Underdog Inc. – 8 x 60 docuseries 
Underdog Inc. follows Dale Kristensen (Backroad Truckers), a Little Person, as he navigates life in a mountain town, juggles the ups-and-downs of fatherhood and runs a small business with his sister. Dale’s business, Underdog Inc., offers a variety of services to customers in the region, including backroad trucking, hotshot delivery of urgent cargo, salvage and rescue calls, construction and handyman services. Whether he’s transporting heavy loads up and down treacherous backroads or tackling a long list of repairs for demanding homeowners, Dale is making a name for himself as a trucker, handyman and all-around good guy. Most importantly, he’s showing his son—and the world—that life is not about first impressions… it’s about lasting connections. Underdog Inc. is produced by Big Time Decent Productions (Rust Valley Restorers, Backroad Truckers).

We Were Broncos – 6 x 30 docuseries
We Were Broncos is the story of Ryan Straschnitzki’s life beyond the horrific Humboldt Broncos bus crash in 2018. As an athlete, Ryan wanted to be a professional hockey player. But after the crash, he had to adapt to a new athletic goal of becoming a Paralympic sledge hockey player while completely changing his lifestyle. We Were Broncos is about perseverance in life and adaptive sport. We Were Broncos is produced by Prairie Cat Productions (Humboldt: The New Season, Talent).

Returning Series

Returning series include Season 2 of Access Tech Live, Season 9 of Our Community, Season 3 of Disrupt, Season 3 of Healthy at Home, Season 5 of Dish with Mary, Season 4 of Mind Your Own Business, Season 6 of Postcards From… and a brand new All Access Comedy special.

All AMI-tv originals are available post-broadcast on demand at AMI+.

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Accessibility takes centre stage in Season 2 of Roll With It

From a media release:

Helmed by Canadian comedian and Trailer Park Boys legend Jonathan Torrens in the director’s seat, Roll With It returns for a second season on the heels of two Screen Nova Scotia nominations for Best Ensemble and Best Scripted Series. Inspired by real-life experiences of award-winning actor and ‘sit-down’ comedian Brian George, the show follows Brian as he navigates life on wheels in inaccessible cities and surrounded by well… jerks – including his own family. Fed up with not living life on his own terms, he takes matters into his own hands in this gritty Canadiana comedy written by comedian Peter Anthony (This Hour Has 22 Minutes, Just for Laughs). Season 2 of Roll With It lands on Bell Canada’s Fibe TV1 channel on June 19, 2024, with one episode airing each Wednesday for six weeks.

“The great thing about a second season is you don’t have to pause to introduce every new character, so you can go full throttle on the story,” says director Jonathan Torrens. “The incredible actors in this cast know their characters inside out. Our crew led by DP Tim Mombourquette is world-class. Peter Anthony’s scripts are tight and funny. And we’ve added Canadian comedy legend Mike Wilmot to the mix. Fibe TV1 viewers are going to love this season!”

In Season 1, audiences became acquainted with Brian (played by Brian George) and his kooky family, always on the cusp of ‘something big’. Fed up with their antics, Brian takes his fate into his own hands and tries to get them onto some quick cash. A man on wheels with big dreams, Brian decides to rob his boss to fund his own business venture. That is, until things go awry.

“Our TV1 audience responded with such love and enthusiasm for the first season with Brian and his flawed but very funny family unit,” says Paul Gardner, Senior Producer, Fibe TV1. “We are very excited to see Roll With It return to continue Brian’s journey.”

“I used to see ableism as a negative,” says award-winning actor, comedian and star of Roll With It, Brian George. “But after working on Roll With It, that negativity has turned into therapy. People have always asked me how I keep my sense of humour in such an inaccessible world, but truthfully, if I didn’t have one, I don’t know where I’d be today.”

Roll With It is rounded out with a hilarious and celebrated cast including show creator and writer Peter Anthony, comedian Kenny Robinson (The Umbrella Academy, Coroner), Fiona Highet (Murdoch Mysteries, Law & Order Toronto), Katelyn McCulloch (Bystanders), award-winning actor Kirstin Howell (Moonshine, Queen of my Dreams) and Steven Lund (Who’s Yer Father?, Schitt’s Creek). New to Roll With It this season are Canadian comedy legend Mike Wilmot and Leah Pritchard as Brian’s love interest Nina. 

Season 1 is available to stream on Bell Fibe TV, channel 1 and the Fibe TV app.

About Canadian Content Studios
In five short years, CANADIAN CONTENT STUDIOS has emerged as one of the busiest small production companies in Atlantic Canada. Building on the personal brand of owner Jonathan Torrens, it specializes in making good things with good people. Credits include Vollies (3x Canadian Screen Award nominee, 3x Nova Scotia Screen Award winner), Trapped (2x Nova Scotia Screen Award nominee) and the co-pro 1 Man’s Treasure (2x Canadian Screen Award nominee). 

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Rogers inks blockbuster deals with NBCUniversal and Warner Bros. Discovery

From a media release:

Rogers Communications today announced blockbuster multi-year deals with NBCUniversal and Warner Bros. Discovery to bring the most watched lifestyle and entertainment content to Canadians on their platform of choice.

 “Rogers invests to bring Canadians the most coveted sports and entertainment,” said Colette Watson, President, Rogers Sports & Media. “We’re evolving our business to reflect where consumers are going, bringing the best mix of U.S. and Canadian content to audiences in the way they want to watch it. This investment also advances our position as a strong Canadian broadcaster that can compete with foreign streamers.”  

 Starting September 2024, the company is launching NBCUniversal’s Bravo channel in Canada and will become the English-language television content rights holder in Canada, featuring the best of unscripted programming, which will include new seasons of Bravo’s hit franchise series.

Starting January 2025, Rogers will be the home of Warner Bros. Discovery’s suite of English-language U.S. lifestyle and factual brands, including HGTV, The Food Network, and much more.

Rogers will work with Canadian distribution partners to make the content widely available, so viewers can continue to watch the programs they have come to know and love.  The content will also be available on Citytv+, complementing the award-winning lineup of programming from Citytv, OMNI, FX, and FXX.  

“We’re already home to Canada’s #1 sports network, and these partnerships solidify our leadership in entertainment with a diverse media portfolio of TV’s most iconic brands,” added Watson. 

The company’s investment in leading entertainment brands and content follows Rogers recent announcement with Comcast to bring the latest award-winning Xfinity products and technology to Canadians across the country. Its entertainment platform integrates live sports, entertainment and news, on-demand, and streaming apps into one, simple viewing experience so customers spend more time watching and less time searching with the award-winning voice remote and integrated interface. 

 With the new U.S. licensing deals, Rogers will increase its investment in original Canadian content and collaborate with Canadian independent producers. Over the last 10 years, Rogers has invested $6.9 billion in Canadian content, part of its commitment to bring Canadians the best content.  

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