Tag Archives: Corus

Nelvana and Kids Can Press announce Blackwrite.ca for emerging Black storytellers and illustrators

From a media release:

Corus Entertainment Inc.’s (TSX:CJR.B) (“Corus Entertainment”) Nelvana, a world-leading international producer, distributor, and licensor of children’s animated and live action content, and Kids Can Press, an award-winning, internationally acclaimed children’s book publisher, announced today the Nelvana/Kids Can Press Talent Incubator: Black Write Edition, an initiative designed to discover, support, and mentor emerging Black storytellers and illustrators.

“Our goal with this talent incubator is to match promising Black creators with industry professionals from two of Canada’s leading children’s content companies in order to develop original work,” said Athena Georgaklis, Head of Development, Nelvana. “We want to give budding creators, particularly those currently outside of the children’s content ecosystem, the chance to develop their work and make essential connections in the television, animation, and publishing industries.”

“Stories for children can be a powerful space to explore new ideas and tackle compelling topics, while inspiring and educating,” said Naseem Hrab, Associate Publisher, Creative, Kids Can Press. “We know there are new stories and illustrations out there that should be shared and deserve a wider audience. It is our hope that this talent incubator reaches Black storytellers who are looking for that opportunity.”

Black storytellers and illustrators are invited to submit their story proposals or illustration portfolio through the blackwrite.ca website. Candidates who are selected will be paired with creative advisors in animation production or book publishing to develop and fully realize their work.

The outcome of the first edition of the incubator is to develop at least one original concept each for TV and book publishing as well as to foster community among new voices and industry professionals.

The deadline to submit is November 30.

Future editions of the talent incubator will focus on other underrepresented communities.

This initiative is part of Corus Entertainment’s comprehensive, multi-year Diversity, Equity and Inclusion (DEI) Action Plan that aims to support diversity, equity and inclusion in the company’s workforce, business and content as well as industry partnerships.

The launch of blackwrite.ca will be supported by television and radio advertising on Corus’ network of TV and radio stations across Canada, starting today, September 15 and running until November 30.

To submit, check out blackwrite.ca.

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Corus expands Canada’s #1 entertainment show with greenlight for ET Canada Weekend

From a media release:

Entertainment Tonight Canada, Canada’s #1 entertainment news series*, is expanding with the newly greenlit hour-long weekend edition of the show, ET Canada Weekend hosted by Sangita Patel. Airing Saturdays at 7:30 p.m. on Global, ET Canada Weekend premieres September 18th delivering in-depth celebrity interviews and exclusive features, while bringing Canadian audiences the biggest news stories of the week. The show will also stream live and on demand with the STACKTV or the Global TV App, in addition to full episodes of the weekday edition of ET Canada.

Since joining ET Canada in 2014, Sangita has been delivering entertainment news and travelling the globe to interview the biggest stars in Hollywood, including Julia Roberts, Dwayne Johnson, Viola Davis, George Clooney, Helen Mirren, and more. In 2019, Sangita was named as the face of COVERGIRL’s Simply Ageless Collection, and continues to serve as Canada’s COVERGIRL ambassador. Dedicated to utilizing her national platform to shine a light on organizations close to her heart, she is a supporter of Pathways to Education, Children’s Wish and ONE Campaign. Most recently, Sangita spearheaded ET Canada’s HELP INDIA broadcast special when India was battling the nation’s worst COVID-19 crisis, bringing together some of the biggest names in entertainment to help raise over $135,000 for the Humanitarian Coalition’s emergency response efforts.

Sangita Patel has been upped to host ET Canada Weekend, while continuing to serve as entertainment reporter for ET Canada weeknights on Global. More details regarding the premiere of ET Canada Weekend coming soon.

ET Canada Weekend also presents new opportunities for brands to integrate with the nation’s top destination for entertainment news amongst women 25-54. From on-air to digital, ET Canada offers a full-service suite of innovative integration opportunities with an in-house creative hub, massive reach, top talent, industry-leading insights, and next generation data. For more information on brand integrations, contact tempo@corusent.com.

ET Canada will premiere its 17th season on Tuesday September 7, airing weeknights at 7:30 p.m. ET/ 7 p.m. PT on Global, hosted by Cheryl Hickey.

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Global Announces Casting Details For Big Brother Canada Season 10

From a media release:

The search for Canada’s next batch of houseguests starts now! Today, Global and Insight Productions announced that casting is open across the country for Season 10 of Big Brother Canada. Coming to Global in 2022, Big Brother Canada is calling Canadians far and wide to apply at BigBrotherCanada.ca for their chance to win big on Canada’s award-winning reality show.

Beginning today, Canadians can apply online at BigBrotherCanada.ca for their chance to become a #BBCAN10 houseguest, competing in a series of extreme challenges in one of the most high-stakes social experiments ever. Fans can also nominate friends on social media by tagging @bigbrotherca and using #FutureHOH for a chance to get noticed by Big Brother Canada’s casting team.

Apply in three simple steps:

  • Record a short video of yourself explaining why you have what it takes to be one of the next houseguests on Big Brother Canada
  • Visit the official casting site at BigBrotherCanada.ca
  • Upload a photo of yourself, along with your video and some basic information

To qualify, houseguest hopefuls must be 19 years of age by February 1, 2022 and submit their applications by November 19, 2021. For more information, including a full list of rules and eligibility, head to BigBrotherCanada.ca.

Commissioned by Corus Entertainment, Season 10 of Big Brother Canada is produced by Insight Productions Ltd. (a Boat Rocker company) in association with Corus Entertainment and Banijay. Executive Producers are John Brunton, Erin Brock, Eric Abboud, and Arisa Cox.

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The Hardy Boys: Jason Stone previews YTV’s darker interpretation

I distinctly remember where I was when I read my first Hardy Boys book. It was The Tower Treasure, the first in the series, and I consumed it during a visit to my grandparent’s home in Cochrane, Ont. I was hooked and blew through a pile of others. Just in time for my TV-loving late 70s youth came The Hardy Boys/Nancy Drew Mysteries on ABC with Parker Stevenson and Shaun Cassidy. So, when YTV announced it had picked up Season 1 of the Canadian co-production, I was excited.

Debuting Friday at 9 p.m. ET/PT on YTV, this interpretation of The Hardy Boys is dark and wonderful. Set against the backdrop of the 80s and all of its music and fashion, Frank Hardy (Rohan Campbell), 16, and his brother Joe (Alexander Elliot), 12, move from the big city to their parent’s hometown of Bridgeport. There, the brothers’ quiet summer quickly comes to a halt when they discover their dad, detective Fenton Hardy (James Tupper) has taken on a secret investigation, leading Frank and Joe to take it upon themselves to start an investigation of their own.

We spoke to executive producer and lead director Jason Stone about how this classic was updated for TV, and how it sets itself apart from the sleuthing brothers before it.

How did you end up getting involved in The Hardy Boys?
Jason Stone: The Hardy Boys was actually my first book report I ever wrote as a kid in Grade 2. I wrote my first book report on The Tower Treasure. I still have it in some box at my parents’ house. Cut to 25 years later and I was in Toronto over the winter. I had gone on a general meeting with Kathleen Meek [Manager, Original Content, Drama and Factual] at Corus and we hit it off. She had mentioned at the end of the conversation that they were working on this adaptation of The Hardy Boys and my ears perked up.

I was like, ‘What kind of adaptation?’ She’s like, ‘We’re still figuring it out. Would that be something of interest to you?’ I was like, ‘Yeah, I love The Hardy Boys.’ It’s such an iconic brand with such a deep history. I remember hearing stories about how the books were all ghostwritten by other writers, some of them Canadian even, and that it was all kind of put under the Stratemeyer Syndicate. And it was all just fascinating intrigue both behind the scenes of the books and how they were written and the stories I remember reading.

Kathleen connected me with Joan Lambur, who was working with Nelvana in putting the pieces together to make the show. Joan and I met in her office on a crazy, snowy, frozen January, and totally hit it off. She asked if I would be interested in coming aboard and I jumped at the opportunity. At the time, they had just been developing it as a 30-minute episodic show. Soon after that, we pivoted to a longer format of a one-hour, slightly older leaning, but more serialized as a slightly darker, more adventure, little bit less case of the week and more of a larger one big mystery as the smaller mysteries sort of throw us into each episode each week.

Why the decision to set it in the 80s?
JS: The biggest reason was that it just felt like if we’re going to have stories about teenagers and young adults sleuthing and solving mysteries, we wanted to remove the crutch of being able to just do it all on the Internet. Getting rid of Google and cell phones was just going to make for a more exciting story, because nobody wants to watch a bunch of kids sit on their computers all day long, solving mysteries.

And just reminiscing to the time when myself and the writers and a lot of the crew were in our formative years, in our teens. We used to talk about getting on your bikes and going out for the day and basically, your parents would just wave on your way out and you’d see them after dark. Who knows what you got up to, and the amount of trust and adventure. That freedom when you’re a kid was really palpable and potent to me as memory and something that I really thought would be a good sort of touchstone for the show and really giving that sense of empowerment that these teenagers would be able to take their own fate and their own destiny into their own hands and be the masters of their own domain. It felt really like a good way to do it. And, the less technological influence there is the better, at least for storytelling.

It appears as though the series deals with one case through the arc through the season. Why did you do that instead of doing a different case every week?
JS: We wanted to do something that had a little more scope to it. At the end of the day, what the networks were looking for started to evolve and move into something that was less episodic. So when we moved from the 30-minute to the one-hour, it felt like a natural sort of pivot in terms of the storytelling. When you move into one hour, it really does allow you to do a different kind of thing. You get to spend more time in kind of mining the characters in a different way, and also letting each thing build to a climactic conclusion. If it’s episodic, it’s like standalone. So whether it’s like Law & Order or CSI, which is an adult mystery show, there would have been that version, but it would have been like we’re just watching little cases break, and maybe there’s some character development, but it’s hard to show a larger arc of characters.

We wanted to really push our characters into situations that allowed them to stretch themselves, who they were, discovering who each other were, and learning lessons about themselves and the world around them, and really getting to feel like the scope and the world and the stakes were growing as the season progressed.

A question about the colour palette. There’s that kind of hazy, brownish, 80s kind of look. I guess that was the intention?
JS: Absolutely. Yeah. Yeah. Me and Fraser [Brown], the cinematographer, and Brian [Verhoog], the production designer, and the colourist, Mark [Driver], we all are a part of that conversation. I had a very specific aesthetic that I was aiming for at the beginning. That always evolves and develops as you bring new collaborators in and new eyes in and getting the feedback from Joan and the network, everybody has input that they lean towards. But it didn’t really change all that much. The references that we were doing and the colour palettes were based on look books and photos, paintings that I would pull and work with the designers and cinematographers to dial in the look, and the costume designer, for that matter as well, Judith [Ann Clancy].

Whether it’s about renting furniture or building clothes or the way the lighting comes through the windows, or the kinds of props that are used, we all had a very cohesive plan that we wanted to stick to, to keep the look really specific without being overly stylized. We wanted it to feel very natural and not in your face that it was being handled unless you’re looking for it. It still gives you a sense of time and place, even though both of those were deliberately ambiguous.

The Hardy Boys airs Fridays at 9 p.m. ET/PT on YTV.

Images courtesy of Corus Entertainment.

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Big Brother Canada donates Season 8 grand prize money to charities responding to COVID-19

From a media release:

In an emotional farewell episode for Season 8 of Big Brother Canada, Global and Insight Productions revealed tonight that, in light of an early end to production with no winner crowned, this season’s $100,000 grand prize will be donated to charities responding to COVID-19 via canadahelps.org.

Faced with unprecedented circumstances with regard to COVID-19, production on the season halted early last week under a provincial mandate for all non-essential businesses to close. In the season’s final episode tonight, the 12 remaining houseguests were informed about the decision, leaving them with one final night in the Big Brother Canada house before returning home.

Jointly, Global and Insight Productions conclude their superhero-themed season with an extended thanks to the real heroes of today – the frontline healthcare workers and first responders dedicating themselves to providing healthcare and emergency support during these challenging times.

At this time, Big Brother Canada Season 8 will not resume production at a later date. Stream this season and complete past seasons, along with digital exclusives, at www.bigbrothercanada.ca.

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