Tag Archives: Cottage Life

Blue Ant Media celebrates 10-year anniversary with 10 new and returning original productions for its Canadian broadcast channels

From a media release:

To mark Blue Ant Media’s 10-year anniversary this September, the international producer, distributor and channel operator announced today 10 new and returning originals to premiere on its portfolio of Canadian specialty networks. The new premium programming lineup includes outdoor lifestyle and survival shows, paranormal anthology series, compelling documentaries and relevant specials with several programs available for licensing globally by Blue Ant International. Overseen by Sam Linton, Head of Original Content, Blue Ant Media, the new commissioning slate will begin airing on the media company’s Canadian channels this fall and into 2022, with several series premiering during nationwide free preview events.

Cottage Life’s highest-rated original, Life Below Zero: Canada (Season 2; World Broadcast Premiere), has been renewed for a second season. Based on the Emmy® Award-winning format Life Below Zero, created and produced by BBC Studios’ Los Angeles production arm, the Canadian adaptation follows a diverse group of individuals surviving in the coldest and most remote regions of Canada. The second installment is co-produced by Blue Ant Media, Quebecor Content and APTN. Also returning to Cottage Life, the Blue Ant Media and APTN co-production Merchants of the Wild (Season 4; Broadcast Premiere) has been renewed for a fourth season. The series follows six Indigenous Adventurers who spend 25 days living off the land in the vast territory known to the L’nu (Mi’kmaq) people as Kespukwitk (lands end), and known to non-Indigenous people as the Southern Nova Scotia. They must use the teachings from the L’nu Elders and Knowledge Holders, who they meet along the way, to help them on their journey and reconnect to who they are as Indigenous Peoples. Finally, Blue Ant Media has greenlit a third installment of Ice Vikings (Season 3; World Broadcast Premiere), which follows fearless descendants of Icelandic Vikings as they battle the elements to keep ice fishing alive on Manitoba’s Lake Winnipeg, reeling in big fish and fat paycheques along the way. Blue Ant Media has also acquired Seasons 1 and 2 of the Ice Vikings franchise to air on Cottage Life. Both Life Below Zero: Canada, Season 2 and Ice Vikings, Season 3 are scheduled to premiere on Cottage Life during the channel’s nationwide free preview event in spring 2022.

On T+E, Canada’s home to paranormal programming, the new original anthology series Eli Roth Presents: A Ghost Ruined My Life (Season 1; Canadian Broadcast Premiere) examines horrifying real-life stories of hauntings experienced by everyday people. Executive produced by the award-winning film director, producer, writer and actor Eli Roth (Inglourious Basterds, Hostel, The Last Exorcism) and Cream Productions, the Blue Ant Media and discovery+ co-production features chilling eyewitness accounts and dramatic reconstructions reminiscent of Roth’s vivid cinematic masterpieces. Also new on T+E, The Lost Colony of Roanoke (Season 1; Canadian Broadcast Premiere), follows a team of archaeologists as they dig for evidence that could help solve one of America’s oldest and most controversial mysteries: what happened to the English colony on Roanoke Island? Featuring exclusive interviews, never-before-seen archaeological evidence and cutting-edge scientific analysis, the series offers compelling theories on the fate of the first European colony in the Americas, who settled on Roanoke Island in 1587 and suddenly vanished without a trace. The Lost Colony of Roanoke will premiere in spring 2022 during T+E’s nationwide free preview event.

The new documentary series Griff’s Great Canadian Adventure (Canadian Broadcast Premiere) marks the first original commission for BBC First in Canada since Blue Ant Media launched the channel in partnership with BBC Studios in March 2021. The six-part series, co-produced by Nikki Ray Media Agency and EQ Media Group, in association with Blue Ant Media, Channel 4, Abacus Media Rights, Quiver Entertainment, Australian Broadcasting Corporation and The History Channel (NZ), follows Welsh comedian and travel enthusiast Griff Rhys Jones on an epic journey across the commonwealth country as he explores Canadian cultures and traditions.

Blue Ant Media has greenlit two new Canadian documentary specials, The Digital Divide (working title) (Season 1; World Broadcast Premiere) and Strange Creatures (working title) (Season 1; World Broadcast Premiere), for its premium factual channel, BBC Earth. This is the first time Blue Ant Media has commissioned originals for BBC Earth in Canada since the channel launched in partnership with BBC Studios in 2017. The Digital Divide (working title) explores the growing chasm between the have and have-nots of digital, mobile and satellite technology. The timely documentary special looks at how COVID-19 exposed the underlying reality that not everyone can afford essential digital devices and examines the significant implications it has on society when there is not an equal playing ground to access technology. The special will have a digital premiere on the MobileSyrup website, a Blue Ant Media-owned company and Canada’s leading technology news website, before airing on BBC Earth. Strange Creatures (working title, a nature and wildlife documentary, is a one-hour spinoff special to Blue Ant Media’s hit YouTube series, Animalogic. Hosted by Animalogic’s scientific illustrator, Danielle Dufault, the special explores Canada’s unusual and fascinating creatures. Both documentary specials are scheduled to premiere in spring 2022 on BBC Earth during the channel’s nationwide free preview event.

On Smithsonian Channel in Canada, the Blue Ant Media and Channel 5 co-production, World’s Most Scenic River Journeys (Season 2; Canadian Premiere) has been renewed for a second season. Narrated by Golden Globe®, Tony and BAFTA award-winning actor Bill Nighy (Love Actually, The Best Exotic Marigold Hotel), the documentary series takes audiences on a visually stunning trip alongside some of the most beautiful and famous rivers around the world. Also new is History by the Numbers (Canadian Broadcast Premiere), an energetic, fast-paced 20-part series about the extraordinary and often overlooked numbers that help us decode world history. Each episode delves into the numbers to give audiences unimaginable numerical facts and top stats behind a different subject – from the massive growth of the global fast-food empire to the wealth and bloodshed of the world’s top crime bosses, the herculean numbers behind Mount Everest, the lives of the richest people on earth, and so much more. The series offers a fresh perspective on how the world adds up today. History by the Numbers is scheduled to premiere in winter 2022 on Smithsonian Channel in Canada during the channel’s nationwide free preview event.

Additional original commissions will be announced by Blue Ant Media in the coming months.

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Preview: Cottage Life revisits extreme storms with The Weather Files: Total Impact

January 2020 marked a historic day in Newfoundland weather history. A blizzard event with 140km/hr winds was quickly dubbed “Snowmaggendon,” when it dropped 76 inches of snow on the province. That, and more, are revisited in Season 2 of The Weather Files: Total Impact.

Returning Monday at 9 p.m. ET/PT on Cottage Life, the events highlighted in The Weather Files: Total Impact are truly fascinating and terrifying. Told through the eyes of survivors, scientific experts and first responders, it brings harrowing true human stories to wild weather.

Monday’s first instalment of eight episodes digs deep into the blizzard that pummeled Newfoundland early last year. What began as a southern winter storm tracking northward from the U.S. slammed into the colder North Atlantic air, triggering a true monster. Original footage shot on cellphones shows the devastation, as wind and snow paralyzed the region with feet of the white stuff. Though snow is a way of life in this part of the country, they weren’t prepared for this much.

Not just a recap accented by shaky cell footage, The Weather Files: Total Impact focuses on the human stories on Monday, like a young mother-to-be who went into labour as the blizzard was kicking in, and the Wall family, whose son, Josh, ventured out into the gloom. Pair that with experts describing the hows and whys of blizzards—and an analysis of snow, its benefits as well as dangers—and this Saloon Media project is compelling stuff.

The Weather Files: Total Impact, airs Mondays at 9 p.m. ET/PT on Cottage Life.

Image courtesy of Blue Ant Media.

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Hope For Wildlife warms hearts and homes with its 10th season on Cottage Life

From a media release:

The highly-anticipated 10th season of Hope for Wildlife (10×60’) offers Canadians the perfect indoor distraction during self-isolation, with heart-warming stories, tears and plenty of happy endings. Cottage Life’s fan-favourite program follows nature advocate Hope Swinimer and her team as they rescue animals at her Halifax-based wildlife refuge and release them back into the wild. The world broadcast premiere of Hope For Wildlife airs Friday, April 24 at 10 p.m. ET / 7 p.m. PT on Cottage Life, during the channel’s nationwide free preview event running until May 3 across 10 million Canadian households.

When wildlife collides with the human world, Hope and her team spring into action to restore the natural order. In this brand new season, there are more animals than ever – seals, beavers, foxes, fawns, eagles and owls. Hope battles government red tape to save a black bear and a Category 2 hurricane slams straight into Hope For Wildlife, putting hundreds of wild lives in danger.

The first two episodes include:

  • Episode 1 – Frozen Hope
    April 24 at 10 p.m. ET / 7 p.m. PT
    The rehab is flooded with orphaned seals and surrounded by solid ice following a brutal bone-chilling winter, providing an additional challenge to the team. Then, a Mountie saves a beaver, with Hope’s help, in what could be the most Canadian wildlife rescue ever. 

  • Episode 2 – Lila The Bear
    May 1 at 10 p.m. ET / 7 p.m. PT
    When an orphaned black bear cub needs help, Hope puts everything on the line to save it and two bobcats are ready for release, but they don’t leave easily.

Hope For Wildlife is a Cottage Life original series, produced by Arcadia Entertainment. Overseeing the series for Cottage Life is Sam Linton, Head of Original Content for Blue Ant Media. Blue Ant International oversees international licensing for Hope For Wildlife.

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marblemedia announces launch of Restaurants on the Edge

From a media release:

Leading global entertainment producer marblemedia, in association with OutEast Entertainment, is thrilled to announce the launch of its new premium unscripted series, Restaurants on the Edge, which will premiere on Blue Ant Media’s Cottage Life channel in Canada on January 2, 2020 with two back-to-back episodes at 8:00 pm ET/PT and 9:00 pm ET/PT.

Each hour-long episode invites viewers into a new restaurant located in a stunning location—on the edge of an ocean, a mountain, or desert. But despite their outstanding views, these eateries are struggling to create an experience that lives up to their incredible surroundings.

A team of experts lead the way in restaurant transformations that span 10 countries across the 13 episodes: chef Dennis Prescott, designer Karin Bohn and restaurateur Nick Liberato. By tapping into the soul of the restaurant’s surroundings and its community, and by incorporating local tastes, flavours and textures, each expert embarks on a journey to transform not just the restaurant, but the owners’ outlook as well.

Featuring breathtaking locations and diverse ways of life, Restaurants on the Edge focuses on creating outstanding restaurant experiences by making connections with local communities and cultures. Co-produced by marblemedia, with executive producers Matt Hornburg and Mark J.W. Bishop, and OutEast Entertainment, with executive producers Courtney Hazlett and Steven Marrs. Produced in association with Blue Ant Media, series producers and directors Rob Brunner and Justin Harding and supervising producer Donna Luke.

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The Brigade: Race to the Hudson paddles into the past on Cottage Life

I’ve made no bones about my love of Canadian history on this website. From slightly fictionalized stories in Frontier to documentary series like Future History, 1491: The Untold History of the Americas and even The Other Side, I love it all. But would a program retracing the route of The York Factory Express, the 19th-century fur trade route, pique my interest?

Heck yeah.

Airing Tuesdays at 10 p.m. ET/PT on Cottage Life, the eight-part The Brigade: Race to the Hudson, follows 750 miles of the 2,600-mile fur trade route linking waterways from the coast of Oregon, through two states, four Canadian provinces, two mountain ranges and five river systems before ending on the icy shores of Hudson Bay in Manitoba. As an added bonus, the series cast 10 participants and placed $500,000 to split at the finish line. The catch? Working together as a team, just like the traders of the past, is key. And, with 750 miles of the route to cover in 28 days—from Castlegar, B.C., to York Factory—the task proved to be tough.

In last week’s debut, we were introduced to the participants, told no modern-day things like GPS or cell phones were allowed, and headed out. Food and other key supplies were planted along the way and the only way out was to quit or be medically evacuated. And, with military veterans, noodlers and folks used to the outdoors, spirits were high. But, as the miles passed by, bugs descended and dehydration became a concern, reality set in. This was going to be immensely difficult.

In Tuesday’s newest instalment, concerns surrounding Vincent are swirling. Will he be the first to go? Meanwhile, reaching the first cache successfully bolsters everyone’s spirits and gives them some much-need energy via vittles. But some bright yellow helmets hint at the white water coming up and navigational mistakes threaten to derail the team.

And while there is a cache of cash at the end of this journey, this isn’t Survivor or The Bachelor. People aren’t voted off. You have to work together to survive, success and cash in.

The Brigade: Race to the Hudson airs Tuesdays at 10 p.m. ET/PT on Cottage Life.

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