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TV,eh? What's up in Canadian television

Upcoming series: Rumours premieres Oct. 9 on CBC

From a CBC media release:

The Rumours are True – Sexy, Funny and Irresistible New 20-Episode Series Rumours Premieres on CBC Television, Monday, Oct. 9 at 9 p.m.

The much anticipated television series RUMOURS debuts on CBC Television, Monday, Oct. 9 at 9 p.m. with half-hour back-to-back episodes. The series offers a modern look at hip urban living through the eyes of the staff at a Toronto-based women’s gossip and lifestyle magazine. Sinfully funny, the show explores sex, love, friendship, family and business, and the amusing way the lines between them blur and collide.

Viewers will get hooked on the funny and fresh characters that inhabit the world of RUMOURS: ambitious, but neurotic Sarah Barnaby (Amy Price-Francis), the “intellectual caveman” Ben Devlin (David Haydn-Jones), the straight-shooting, free-spirited Helen (Sadie LeBlanc), and the icy publisher Michelle Lawrence (Jennifer Dale). The talented cast also includes magazine staffers Frank (Phil Jarrett), Charles (Anthony Lemke), Sandra (Cindy Sampson) and Emily (Lucinda Davis), plus Ben’s sister Katie (Stephanie Anne Mills) and son Felix (Elliott Larson).

RUMOURS comes to English television with an excellent pedigree. Rumeurs, the French version on Radio-Canada, has been a mega-hit in Quebec and is entering its fifth season. Creative head of CBC Television Comedy Anton Leo said, “When executive producers Moses Znaimer and Jocelyn Deschnes approached the CBC about producing Rumours, I was delighted. The characters are sexy, cheeky and are entwined in funny, provocative storylines. Along with their impressive track record, Jocelyn and Moses have delivered a fabulous cast, an award-winning writer and stylized look that should have audiences across the country addicted to RUMOURS.”

RUMOURS is written by Isabelle Langlois and directed by Éric Tessier. Executive producers are Jocelyn Deschnes and Moses Znaimer. It is a Sphere Media/MZTV production in association with CBC Television.


Canadian Idol Champ Wins by Just 3% in Closest Race Ever; Winner Announced Sunday on CTV

From a CTV media release:

It’s a Nail-Biter: Canadian Idol Champ Wins by Just 3% in Closest Race Ever; Winner Announced Sunday on CTV

Toronto, ON (September 14, 2006) – Is it Craig or Eva? This year’s Canadian Idol champion has won by a nose in the closest vote ever, CTV announced today as preparations continue for this Sunday’s blockbuster season finale.

— Western Canada determines winner as voting details announced —
— African Children’s Choir join Nelly Furtado and Melissa O’Neil as special guests —

With three days still to go before the winner is revealed, CTV is taking advantage of the opportunity to reveal voting data from Monday’s final vote that demonstrates it’s a horserace like never before. And unlike most federal elections, the West, for once, has had the final say, playing king-maker – or queen-maker – in Canada’s biggest popular vote this year.

By the time the eastern voting window closed at 11 p.m. EDT following Canadian Idol’s final performance episode on Monday, votes for Top 2 competitors Eva Avila and Craig Sharpe had resulted in a virtual tie. It was votes from Western Canada during the second voting window that determined the winner, with Sunday’s eventual champ edging out the runner-up by only 131,000 votes out of a total of nearly four million cast, a margin of just 3.3 per cent. The identity of the winner still remains a closely-guarded secret, secured in a sealed envelope under lock and key until Sunday night’s show.

Continue reading Canadian Idol Champ Wins by Just 3% in Closest Race Ever; Winner Announced Sunday on CTV


Upcoming series: Jozi-H premieres Oct. 13 on CBC

From a CBC media release:

Hard-Hitting New Series Jozi-H Combines Cutting Edge Medicine with Riveting Drama Beginning Friday, Oct. 13 at 9 p.m. on CBC-TV

Ancient customs and cutting-edge medicine square up for a head-on collision in JOZI-H, a gripping new 13-part medical drama premiering Friday, Oct. 13 at 9 p.m. on CBC Television.

Set in Johannesburg, South Africa, JOZI-H is about the personal struggles faced by a varied team of international doctors, surgeons and nurses, dedicated to saving lives at the world’s highest profile emergency medicine facility-Johannesburg Metropolitan Hospital. Filled with complex characters and intriguing storylines, the series is set in an intense crucible of culture clashes that sets it apart from any medical series ever produced.

JOZI-H’s reputation for trauma work is legendary. Overseas professionals would give anything for the privilege of training there. It’s where modern western medicine meets traditional African healing; where ground-breaking HIV/AIDS research leads the way in search of a cure; where diseases no longer found in the western world remain a deadly challenge; and the volume of violent crime forces interns to become world experts on trauma in weeks, rather than years. Most of the medical team-originally from Canada, the U.S. and Britain-are on their own personal “tour of duty”. They struggle to deal with the challenges of life, love and medicine against an intense, ever-changing landscape.

Vincent Walsh (Hemingway vs. Callaghan) stars as Dr. Russ Monsour. Hiding the fact that he’s half native, the recently divorced Winnipeg doctor wishes to disappear into a place where no one knows him. Sarah Allen (Booky Makes Her Mark) is Jenny Langford, a paediatric surgical registrar posted for six months in South Africa. With an inflexible bureaucracy standing in the way, Dr. Langford has to fight for the drugs to treat her young HIV/AIDS patients, while acting as single mother for her own child born with spinal bifida. These foreign surgeons, along with a local mix of doctors and nurses, band together to form an overworked, underpaid and over-dedicated team of health care workers. Their backgrounds are diverse and their pasts incomparable, yet each is united in an effort to heal all those who enter the hospital.

Continue reading Upcoming series: Jozi-H premieres Oct. 13 on CBC


In the news: Corner Gas radio broadcasts

From a CTV media release:

Cross-Country Radio Stations Descend Upon Dog River to Celebrate Corner Gas Season Premiere, Sept. 18

– National radio campaign supports Season 4 premiere of Corner Gas

Toronto (September 13, 2006) – Canada wakes up in Dog River this coming Monday, September 18 when eight radio stations from across the country broadcast live from the set of Corner Gas in advance of the series’ season premiere that night on CTV. It is the latest in a series of innovative marketing outreach campaigns by CTV that have contributed to Corner Gas becoming Canada’s favourite homegrown TV program and Number 1 comedy series. Led by star Brent Butt, the entire Corner Gas cast will begin a marathon seven-hour national radio broadcast beginning at 3 a.m. local time with C100 in Halifax and continuing until 10 a.m. when Vancouver’s Jack FM wraps up their morning show. In between, the Corner Gas crew will be live on-air with additional radio stations from Ottawa, Toronto, Winnipeg, Regina, Calgary and Edmonton. The eight stations will broadcast live from the Corner Gas set at Regina’s Canada / Saskatchewan Production Studios.

Never attempted before, the radio campaign gives fans a chance to experience the prairie charm of Corner Gas by tuning in to some of Canada’s most listened-to radio shows on the morning of the fourth season premiere. Complete morning teams and correspondents will set up right inside the familiar Corner Gas sets of The Ruby, Oscar and Emma’s house, the Dog River Police Department and Mayor Fitzy’s office as Brent Butt and his Corner Gas cast mates stop and visit with each morning crew. The day prior to the broadcast, the radio station representatives will visit neighbouring Rouleau, Saskatchewan (aka Dog River), and receive a special tour of the series’ on location sets.

“Taking the Corner Gas experience to the radio platform represents a novel and innovative outreach effort to find even more viewers for Canada’s Number 1 comedy series,” said Mike Cosentino, CTV Vice-President of Communications.

Other elements of the campaign include listen-and-win contesting with the radio stations where Corner Gas fans can win a walk-on role in Season 5 of the series. The campaign is being supported by 30-second on-air promos on CTV in each local market driving viewers to tune in to the participating radio station for contest details. The campaign was created in-house at CTV.

The eight radio stations participating in the event are C100 (Halifax), 93.9 BOB-FM (Ottawa), The New Country 95.3 (Toronto), Hot 103 (Winnipeg), 104.9 The Wolf (Regina), 96.9 Jack FM (Calgary), CISN Country 103.9 (Edmonton) and 96.9 Jack FM (Vancouver).

Viewers can fill-up with a whole new fourth season of laughs when Corner Gas returns with 19 half-hour episodes on Mondays at 8:30 p.m. beginning Sept. 18 on CTV (check local listings). The new season will also air Saturdays at 8 p.m. ET/PT, beginning Sept. 23 on The Comedy Network.

In the Season 4 premiere, the laughter continues as Karen makes Emma mad when she agrees to cut Brent’s hair. As well, Davis is after Oscar to replace his muffler, which is as loud as it is old.

For everything Corner Gas, visit