Tag Archives: CBC

Lucky 13! Cameras roll on Season 13 of #1 Canadian drama Murdoch Mysteries for CBC and UKTV

From a media release:

Shaftesbury announced today that #1 Canadian drama* MURDOCH MYSTERIES has begun production on Season 13, for CBC and UKTV, distributed by ITV STUDIOS Global Entertainment. With 18 new one-hour episodes, Season 13 will see the beloved series celebrate its 200th episode. Starring Yannick Bisson, Hélène Joy, Jonny Harris, and Thomas Craig, the internationally acclaimed series averaged 1.1 million viewers each week on CBC in Season 12,** and in the U.K. remains one of Alibi’s top-performing shows. MURDOCH MYSTERIES Season 13 will film on location in Ontario until November 2019, and premiere on CBC this fall, with international dates to follow.

With personal and professional changes for some of the Station House No. 4 team last year, Season 13 will continue to explore new developments in the lives of Detective William Murdoch (Bisson), Dr. Julia Ogden (Joy), Inspector Thomas Brackenreid (Craig), Constables George Crabtree (Harris) and Henry Higgins-Newsome (Lachlan Murdoch), and Detective Llewelyn Watts (Daniel Maslany) as they tackle Toronto’s toughest mysteries, from the serious and historic to the comical and unusual. Returning cast also include Shanice Banton, Arwen Humphreys, and Siobhan Murphy. Season 13 guest stars include Colm Feore (The Umbrella AcademyHouse of Cards) and Claire Goose (The CoronerCasualty).

Yannick Bisson returns to the director’s chair for a Season 13 episode. Other episodes will be directed by showrunner Peter Mitchell, Harvey Crossland, Gary Harvey, Mars Horodyski, Sherren Lee, Mina Shum, and Craig David Wallace. Season 13 episodes are written by Mitchell, Paul Aitken, Noelle Girard, Maureen Jennings, Simon McNabb, Mary Pedersen, and Dan Trotta.

One of Canada’s most successful and longest-running dramas, MURDOCH MYSTERIES (13 seasons; 207 total episodes – 204 x one-hour episodes, 3 x two-hour specials) has become a staple for CBC and broadcasters around the world with its winning formula that brings together compelling mysteries, unique slices of turn-of-the-century history, ingenious inventions and personal moments for each character. The series is licensed to broadcasters in 150+ countries and territories including the U.S., U.K., France, Finland and China.

The MURDOCH MYSTERIES brand continues to grow and evolve – brand licensing deals include an all-ages immersive game experience, The Murdoch Mysteries Escape Series, a collaboration between Shaftesbury and Company & Co. that launched in early 2017 in Toronto, and recently relocated to historic Casa Loma in Toronto.

MURDOCH MYSTERIES is based on Maureen Jennings’s popular Detective Murdoch series of novels and premiered in Canada in January 2008.

MURDOCH MYSTERIES is executive produced by Christina Jennings, Scott Garvie, Yannick Bisson, Hélène Joy, and Peter Mitchell, who also serves as showrunner, and produced by Stephen Montgomery and Julie Lacey.

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The women of Frankie Drake Mysteries jump back in action as filming on season three begins for CBC and UKTV

From a media release:

Shaftesbury today announced that production is underway on the third season of the award-winning drama series FRANKIE DRAKE MYSTERIES, for CBC and UKTV, distributed by Kew Media Distribution. A top-rated drama for CBC and Alibi, the 10 x one-hour episode third season of the hit series set in 1920s Toronto kicked off production with a shoot in London, U.K. in April; the series will film on location in Ontario through to the fall. The third season sees Frankie face a family secret while episodes bring her and the Drake Private Detectives team into the world of British aristocrats, illegal boxing, the supernatural, and political fundraisers.

Nominated for “Best Debut Drama Series” at the 2018 Content Innovation Awards, FRANKIE DRAKE MYSTERIES was nominated for five 2019 Canadian Screen Awards including Best Drama Series. One of CBC’s most-watched dramas since it first launched in Canada in 2017, the series launched on UKTV’s Alibi channel in January 2018 and season two remains one of Alibi’s top-performing shows of the year alongside Shaftesbury’s Murdoch Mysteries.

FRANKIE DRAKE MYSTERIES stars Lauren Lee Smith (The Shape of Water, The Listener) as the private eye with a mysterious past, Frankie Drake; Chantel Riley (Wynonna Earp, Pearson) as Frankie’s fearless and clever partner, Trudy Clarke; Rebecca Liddiard (Departure, Alias Grace) as morality officer, Mary Shaw; and Sharron Matthews (Mean Girls, Odd Squad) as morgue attendant, Flo Chakowitz. Returning guest stars include Wendy Crewson (The Detail, Slasher, Saving Hope) as Frankie’s occasional-con-woman mother, Nora; and Grace Lynn Kung (Mary Kills People, The Carmilla Movie, Star Trek: Discovery) as café and speakeasy owner, Wendy Quon; new guest stars this season include Honeysuckle Weeks (Foyle’s War, The Five) as Agatha Christie.

Set in 1920s Toronto, FRANKIE DRAKE MYSTERIES follows the city’s only female private detectives, Frankie Drake (Smith) and her partner Trudy Clarke (Riley) as they fight crime with the help of keen police morality officer Mary Shaw (Liddiard) and spirited morgue attendant Flo Chakowitz (Matthews). In a time of change and hopefulness, their gender is their biggest advantage as they defy expectations and rebel against convention. The Drake Private Detectives take on cases that explore every cross-section of Toronto, from gospel church choirs, bathing beauties and the early cinema scene, to the homes and private parties of the city’s elite. Frankie and Trudy’s fearless sense of adventure gets them into all kinds of trouble, but they always manage to find a way out. They are new detectives for a new world – but is the world ready for them?

Created by Carol Hay and Michelle Ricci, FRANKIE DRAKE MYSTERIES is executive produced by Christina Jennings, Scott Garvie, Peter Mitchell, and Carol Hay; Peter Mitchell also serves as showrunner. John Callaghan and Julie Lacey are co-executive producers, and Teresa Ho serves as producer.

A CBC original series, FRANKIE DRAKE MYSTERIES is developed and produced by Shaftesbury in association with CBC and UKTV, with the participation of the Canada Media Fund, the Canadian Film or Video Production Tax Credit, and the Ontario Film and Television Tax Credit. Kew Media Distribution is the global distributor of the series.

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Detention Adventure bursts on to CBC Gem

I had the honour of moderating the panel for a very cool new series that’s debuted on CBC Gem. On Friday, May 3, cast, crew, friends and family of Detention Adventure packed Toronto’s vintage theatre, The Royal, to watch the first five episodes of the digital series on the big screen.

Co-created by Joe Kicak and Carmen Albano, written by Kicak, Albano and Karen Moore, executive-produced by Moore, Lauren Corber and produced by Ryan West, Detention Adventure summons Goonies, Stand By Me and the Harry Potter franchise in its tone. Legend says inventor Alexander Graham Bell built a secret lab under a school attended by three nerds. Raign (Simone Miller), Joy (Alina Prijono) and Hulk (Jack Fulton) are determined to find the entrance, which is supposed to be located somewhere in the old library that now serves as a detention room. The trio’s plan? Get into trouble, go to detention and find that entrance. The problem? Raign, Joy and Hulk have to include the school bully, Brett (Tomaso Sanelli), in their plans.

I’ve been a fan of Detention Adventure since last spring when Kicak, Albano and Moore were seeking Independent Production Fund money to help get it made. Now, one hot summer later, and the 10-episode spectacle is available for all to see

And truly enjoy.

Detention Adventures is touted as CBC’s first original kids scripted series for CBC Gem and is aimed at the tween crowd. That makes sense; after all, a quartet of kids putting teachers and a principal in their place and solving cool puzzles rates with that crowd. But there is a lot for adults to like as well. The writing is razor-sharp, the performances spot-on and the production values are stellar. Detention Adventure is chock-full of Easter eggs adults will revel in, including a nod to The Shining.

The science used in the series is sound (Hulk’s science class antics are what land him in detention) and the sets are incredible (the show’s tunnel sets were built in a high school gymnasium), but it’s the message that most impressed me. Everyone is different, everyone comes from a different background, but we can all work together to solve problems.

Detention Adventure is available for streaming on CBC Gem.

Images courtesy of CBC and Joe Kicak.

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CBC announces the return of Battle of the Blades

From a media release:

CBC today announced the return of hit competition series BATTLE OF THE BLADES (Season 5, 8×60), from Insight Productions. Returning this fall, the revitalized series combines athletes from two of Canada’s favourite sports — figure skating and hockey — as they pair up in a live, high-stakes figure skating competition. In this new iteration of the hugely popular format, teams will once again compete for the charity of their choice. Further details will be announced later this spring.

First launched in 2009, BATTLE OF THE BLADES was broadcast on CBC from 2009 – 2013 (4 seasons, 57 episodes) and remains the highest-rated original English-language Canadian format of all time.*

A CBC original series, BATTLE OF THE BLADES is produced by Insight Productions. The series is executive produced by Insight’s John Brunton, Lindsay Cox, Erin Brock, and Mark Lysakowski and is co-created and executive produced by Olympian and World & Canadian Figure Skating Hall of Famer Sandra Bezic. For CBC, Sally Catto is General Manager, Programming; Jennifer Dettman is Executive Director, Unscripted Content; and Susan Taylor is Executive in Charge of Production.

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Links: Schitt’s Creek, Season 5 finale

From Chris Harnick of EOnline:

Link: Schitt’s Creek lets Catherine O’Hara be ridiculous—and she’ll be forever grateful
“When it’s a word like ‘amazing’ or like ‘astonish,’ it’s just fun to break up the syllables with way too much pausing in between, like, ‘a-stonish,’ just for no good reason…There are certain words that beg to be stretched out or beg to be destroyed.” Continue reading.

From Carrie Courogen of Garage:

Link: How ‘Schitt’s Creek’ turned Catherine O’Hara into a couture queen
“Moira Rose is such a wonderful example of how fashion has no age limit. This is a woman who loves her legs and has no qualms about showing them off. She knows what she likes and is so free in her approach to how she gets dressed every day. I love Moira for that.” Continue reading.

From Christine Linnell of the Advocate:

Link: Emily Hampshire shines in Schitt’s Creek season finale
“Speaking for myself, this show has changed my life — not just in terms of getting a job that pays and being on a TV show, but my life has just opened my heart in ways I didn’t think existed.” Continue reading. 

From Lea Palmieri of Decider:

Link: Emily Hampshire on her huge ‘Schitt’s Creek’ moment: “I got my dream in the best way possible”
“Stevie breaks my heart. Mr. Rose breaks my heart. When I read it, and just even reading on the page, it just gets me. All of her relationships really hit a nerve for me. So I was glad that she got to express herself more rawly.” Continue reading.

From Justin Kirkland of Esquire:

Link: For Dan Levy, the end is just the beginning
“I stand behind the idea of never taking advantage of the audience you’ve built and putting 110 per cent into the show until you’re finished.” Continue reading. 

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