Tag Archives: Featured

What the Games Industry is Learning from TV in 2023

The games industry was once far smaller than the TV and movie sectors, but nowadays the tables have turned. All told, the global video game market is worth around $300 billion annually, and it’s increasingly using those new resources to integrate greater immersion and storytelling into its design. In doing this, it’s looking to take a leaf out of the world of TV which has proven such a mass-audience favourite over the past 50 years. Let’s take a look below at some examples of this in action.

Integrating the Live Show Format

One key sector going above and beyond in serving its patrons up a slice of showbiz is of iGaming. In recent years, leading platforms have increasingly sought to integrate live casino game shows into their core feature set. Online gaming establishments have consistently outcompeted their brick-and-mortar predecessors over the past two decades, with tech-savvy gaming fans citing the on-demand nature of these platforms as a major draw.

Though if any criticism could have been raised, it was that digital services often lacked the opportunity for human interaction that is given at a physical venue. Live dealer rooms and game shows are seen as the perfect response to this requirement. Live dealer rooms take the standard table game format familiar to online gaming aficionados and adds in the extra dimension of a live host and dealer.

This boosts immersion and creates a richer experience for patrons. Game shows, as the name suggests, take this a step further by eschewing the classic casino titles in favour of emulating traditional TV game shows. These types of shows are well-loved and have left an enduring impression on Canadian audiences thanks to their memorable combination of trivia, exciting rounds, human interest and exotic prizes. Among the most popular Canadian examples of this genre is Canada’s Smartest Person.

In Canada’s Smartest Person, the traditional trivia show of yesteryear is reimagined along the lines of crucial advances in psychology. It draws upon the ‘multiple intelligences’ theory of psychology Howard Gardner which posits that there are, in fact, 9 separate forms of intelligence and that, distributed among the general population, you will find people who are especially skilled in one or several of these.

In the show, contestants compete across a variety of rounds focused on any one of these distinct intelligences – be that visual, logical, physical, linguistic, musical or social. Whereas a normal trivia show rewards memory retention, to do well in Canada’s Smartest Person requires a diverse and broad intellect capable of adapting to a range of unique tasks. The show has been running with great success since 2014 and is currently in its fourth season.

Due to its success, it’s natural that live casino shows that look to ape its watchable appeal are in the ascendant. A prominent example of a casino show that emulates a popular game show is Dream Catcher, which incorporates a spinning wheel like those made popular by Wheel of Fortune. In doing so, these shows are pioneering a new level of interactive entertainment.

Incorporating Serialization

The rise of prestige TV series in the 21st century validated the medium as an art form in its own right, winning over skeptical critics and encouraging new creators to tell stories with the format. Serialized TV in the 90s, with the exception of soap operas, were typically episodic in their storytelling.

This means that stories and events would typically be contained within each episode, exerting minimal impact on overarching character development or background plot. This is most keenly recognized in the ‘monster of the week’ format that made shows like the original Star Trek series so accessible and popular.

By the time of the year 2000, larger budgets and a growing appetite to tell bigger stories on the small screen gave rise to shows like The Sopranos, Lost, and The Wire which used the medium to tell long-form and intricate stories. These new types of shows could unfold with the pacing of a novel, and incorporate much richer and deeper character development into their design.

Likewise, historically gaming was relatively episodic. A sequel to a game would likely advance the story of the previous title forward, but would seldom be required playing for new users. This is very similar to how movie sequels work. However, it is becoming increasingly commonplace for games to focus on telling richer and more nuanced stories, and even to incorporate season-length story arcs into their design.

This is particularly noticeable with so-called live service games that debut new content every several months. Bungie’s Destiny 2, for example, enjoys several interlocking levels of storytelling. The largest level of these are yearly expansion packs that cost a premium, and introduce new mechanics alongside major new story beats.

But in between these yearly releases, Destiny 2 also runs seasonal storytelling that unfolds in real time over the course of three months each. This gives the developers greater scope to tell backstories, call back to previous plot points, and focus on world-building in between major expansions.


Bell Media announces 2023/24 original programming slate

From a media release:

Ahead of today’s 2023 Upfront presentation, Bell Media unveils its English and French-language original content slate for 2023/24, totalling 96 titles and 1037 hours of original content. Produced in partnership with independent production partners and Bell Media Studios, the impressive programming lineup doubles down on returning fan-favourites and beloved franchises, and adds compelling new series from a diverse roster of well-known and emerging Canadian storytellers.

Among today’s announcements:

  • Based on the hit international format THE TRAITORS, English and French-language versions of the psychological reality competition series are greenlit for CTV (THE TRAITORS: CANADA) and Noovo (LES TRAÎTRES). As announced on Tuesday, in a Bell Media first, Karine Vanasse (CARDINAL) will host both the English and French-language versions of the series.
  • CTV adds new lifestyle reality special THE TAKE BACK, which gives Canadians across the country a second chance at their cancelled celebrations.
  • Celebrated Canadian comedian Russell Peters hosts THE RP4 HOSTED BY RUSSELL PETERS for CTV Comedy Channel, and is the subject of new Crave documentary RUSSELL PETERS.
  • CTV Sci-Fi Channel becomes the exclusive home to comedy horror series REGINALD THE VAMPIRE.
  • New docuseries THE SQUAD unveils the story behind the 1991 arrest of Wanda Holloway in Texas for CTV Drama Channel.
  • Notable names at the helm of Crave Original series include: KIDS IN THE HALL’s Bruce McCulloch who presents the new sketch comedy series THE DESSERT; Nikolaj Coster-Waldau who hosts the new series THE OPTIMIST’S GUIDE TO THE PLANET WITH NIKOLAJ COSTER-WALDAU; Alex Wolff, Thea Sofie Loch Næss, Anna Torv, and Noah Taylor who star in the new international co-production SO LONG, MARIANNE, about the story that inspired Leonard Cohen’s infamous love song; and online legends Jae and Trey Richards who bring hilarious new comedy THE OFFICE MOVERS.
  • More Crave Originals include: new comedy series THE TRADES from the producers of TRAILER PARK BOYS; first-ever short form series NESTING; Indigenous comedy series DON’T EVEN; and a bevy of ground-breaking documentaries.
  • Morgan Kohan, Chad Michael Murray, and Scott Patterson return for Season 2 of the #1 new Canadian drama SULLIVAN’S CROSSING.
  • CTV confirms a new season of FARMING FOR LOVE (Season 2), which joins the previously announced renewals of award-winning and fan-favourite series THE AMAZING RACE CANADA (Season 9), CHILDREN RUIN EVERYTHING (Season 3), and TRANSPLANT (Season 4).
  • CTV Life Channel renews award-winning cooking series MARY MAKES IT EASY for a third season.
  • CTV Comedy Channel leans on the laughs with renewals for hit series ROAST BATTLE CANADA (Season 4) and ACTING GOOD (Season 2).
  • Award-winning Crave Originals returning for new seasons include: Season 4 of CANADA’S DRAG RACE, coming later this year; Season 2 of CANADA’S DRAG RACE: CANADA VS. THE WORLD; a second season of WE’RE ALL GONNA DIE (EVEN JAY BARUCHEL); and Season 2 of docu-comedy series PILLOW TALK.
  • Discovery Networks renews popular factual series including FEAR THY NEIGHBOR (Season 9), HIGHWAY THRU HELL (Season 12), LAST OF THE GIANTS (Season 3), and FORENSIC FACTOR (Season 7) from Bell Media Studios.
  • Originals continue to drive French conventional network Noovo with just announced titles including the return of hit SURVIVOR QUÉBEC for Season 2.
  • Bell Media Studios orders new seasons of CTV YOUR MORNINGTHE SOCIAL, and Canada’s #1 entertainment news program ETALK – along with the just announced new daytime series THE GOOD STUFF WITH MARY BERG hosted by Mary Berg.

Bell Media’s New English and French-Language Primetime Original Entertainment Productions Slate from Independent Producers Includes the Following, With Additional Titles to Be Announced Later This Year.

New English-Language Series:

BATTLE OF THE GENERATIONS – CTV *previously announced

BATTLE OF THE GENERATIONS not only asks how well you know your own generation, but how well you know your rivals’ generations – ultimately resolving the question of which generation has what it takes to win it all. (Bell Media Studios/GroupM Motion Entertainment)

BILLIONAIRE MURDERS – Crave *previously announced

Premiering June 16, the four-part docuseries explores the unsolved murders of Canadian power couple, Barry and Honey Sherman. The series narrative is driven by leading investigative journalist, and the pre-eminent expert on the case, Kevin Donovan. BILLIONAIRE MURDERS features illuminating interviews and compelling details of the case, including an intimate look at the crime scene, and access to key figures connected to the couple, along with information from confidential sources with insight crucial to the unsolved murder mystery. (Entertainment One)

BRIA MACK GETS A LIFE – Crave *previously announced

A half-hour comedy series that follows Bria Mack, a 25-year-old Black woman, as she navigates adulthood in a predominantly white world – which is made all the more difficult, but also more tolerable – by Black Attack, her invisible hype girl. (New Metric Media)


Bruce McCulloch of THE KIDS IN THE HALL presents the next generation of Canadian sketch comedy with an all-out, boundary pushing expedition to the edge of decency. Starring Isabella Campbell, Shane Cunningham (co-creator), and Jillian Smart, with music by Executive Producer Max Kerman (Arkells), THE DESSERT is an audacious and rapid-fire celebration of the absurd. (LaRue Entertainment)

DON’T EVEN – Crave

After a humiliation at her high school grad, Violet wants to make the most of the summer before university as her best friend, Harley, distracts herself from a big dilemma: She doesn’t know what she wants to do after high school. As the lifelong Indigenous BFFs bask in their newfound freedom, cracks begin to form in their once impenetrable bond. It’s awkward. It’s dramatic. It’s friggin’ Winnipeg. (Pier 21 Films, Frantic Films Manitoba, Sekowan Media)


THE GOOD STUFF WITH MARY BERG, a new talk and lifestyle series, hosted by multiple Canadian Screen Award-winning host and author Mary Berg features lifestyle trends, home hacks, audience games, and inspiring stories – all from top experts.  A daily hour of fun, food, and laughs, Berg dives right in from sharing daily, delicious and approachable recipes for the home cook, to cook-a-long sessions with guest chefs, and getting her hands dirty with gardening, DIYs, home renovations and more. As well, Berg welcomes notable guests, including authors, celebrities, influencers, and everyday heroes. (Bell Media Studios)

*not accounted for in total hours of English and French-language content.

I HAVE NOTHING – Crave *previously announced

I HAVE NOTHING follows Carolyn Taylor (BARONESS VON SKETCH) on a quest to choreograph the perfect full length pairs figure skating routine to Whitney Houston’s 1992 iconic hit song “I Have Nothing.” Motivated by a teenaged obsession for the 1988 Calgary Olympics (but with no skating knowledge or ability), Carolyn is aided and abetted on her figure-skating journey by BAFTA-winning actor and comedian Mae Martin (Feel Good) and Emmy-winning figure skating choreographer Sandra Bezic (Battle of the Blades). The season culminates in a live performance of Carolyn’s one-of-a-kind routine for an audience of figure-skating royalty, die-hard skating fans and Carolyn’s teen idols. (Blue Ant Studios in association with Catalyst)

LATE BLOOMER – Crave *previously announced

Created by and starring Jasmeet Raina (Jus Reign), the eight-part series, which is loosely inspired by Raina’s life as a Punjabi Sikh millennial and online celebrity, follows burgeoning content creator Jasmeet Dutta as he tries to balance his ambitions for success with his commitment to his family, community, and culture. (Pier 21 Films)


Anna and Rosa, two unlikely best friends for whom the romantic comedy dream hasn’t panned out – no house, no partner, no baby – try to get knocked-up at the same time so they can parent together in a new version of family. As they clumsily and comically search for a baby daddy to fertilize their drying-up eggs, all while trying to find an affordable home in a totally insane housing market, they find their feelings changing from the simplicity of platonic to the complexities of romantic, turning everything they believed about sexuality and ‘happily ever after’ upside down. NESTING is a provocative, funny, unflinching short-form web series about friendship, fertility, the housing crisis, and love. (Project Undertow)


From the producers of SHELVED and Bell Media Studios breakout stars and online legends Jae and Trey Richards, THE OFFICE MOVERS follows two college dropout brothers who must pull their struggling office moving company from the brink of bankruptcy to secure a potential buy-out offer from an international logistics conglomerate. (Counterfeit Pictures)


THE Optimist’s Guide to the Planet with Nikolaj Coster-Waldau travels the world to find people and projects inspiring hope for the future. (Cream Productions)

PARANORMAL REVENGE – CTV Sci-Fi *previously announced

PARANORMAL REVENGE offers a fresh approach to creepy, hair-raising stories that emanate from the dimension beyond. Each story unfolds from the perspective of a main storyteller – a victim – who has been targeted by a mysterious paranormal entity or entities. What follows is a truly original and compelling approach: a mash-up of the true-crime procedural and terrifying ghost stories. (Sphere Media)


Imagine a world populated by beautiful, fit, and vain vampires. Reginald Andres tumbles headlong into it as an unlikely hero who will have to navigate every kind of obstacle – the girl he loves but can’t be with, a bully manager at work, and the vampire chieftain who wants him dead. Fortunately, Reginald discovers he has a few unrecognized powers of his own. (Cineflix Studios, December Films, Modern Story and Great Pacific Media)


Join Russell Peters for a landmark Just For Laughs event as he hosts four special galas, each with a star-studded line-up of carefully curated comics. Always uncensored and honest, Russell will be at the helm of shows that will be guaranteed to be provocative, funny, and unforgettable. This year will be the first in the festival’s history where all four galas will be hosted by the same artist. (Just For Laughs)

SO LONG, MARIANNE – Crave *previously announced

So Long, Marianne is a new eight-part, co-production from Crave and NRK which tells the legendary love story of Canadian singer and poet Leonard Cohen and his muse Marianne Ihlen. The series is an intimate tale of two, lonely people falling in love during a period of their life when they are trying to figure out who they are and their place in the world, while one is becoming one of the most famous singers of all time. Starring Alex Wolff, Thea Sofie Loch Næss, Anna Torv, and Noah Taylor. (Connect3 SLM Productions Inc.)

STAYING INN: HOTEL JULIE – CTV Life *previously announced

STAYING INN: HOTEL JULIE centres around Creative Director Autumn Hachey as she embarks on the biggest project of her career – the redesign of a 19th century inn into a luxury boutique hotel in Stratford, Ont. In a race to be ready for the world-renowned Stratford Festival, Autumn and her team of collaborators have their work cut out for them. She’s taking it all on – marketing and branding strategy, complete suite redesigns, sourcing the perfect vintage pieces, finding the right trades and, most importantly, striving to create the ultimate luxury guest experience. (Alibi Entertainment)

SIGHT UNSEEN – CTV *previously announced

After losing her vision, former homicide detective Tess Burke is haunted by the unsolved cases she left behind. When she meets professional seeing-eye guide Sunny Patel through a visual assistance app, they decide to take action. Using a hidden camera and earpiece, Sunny steers Tess remotely around life’s obstacles – and life’s crimes – as the two challenge preconceptions about ability, trust, and where to draw the line. (Created by Karen and Nikolijne Troubetzkoy. Produced by Blink49 Studios and Front Street Pictures. Distribution handled by Blink49 in the US and Canada, with FIFTH SEASON handling rest of the world)


THE SQUAD reveals the truth behind Wanda Holloway’s arrest in Texas in 1991 for hiring a hitman to kill her daughter’s cheerleading rival. (Cream Productions)


In this new CTV special, Canadians across the country receive a second chance after a cancelled celebration. THE TAKE BACK team have one week to create a surprise event for unsuspecting Canadians, giving them an experience that will change their ordinary day to an extraordinary lifetime memory. It’s time for a take back! (McGillivray Entertainment Media, Fremantle)


From the producers of TRAILER PARK BOYS, THE TRADES is a comedy series set in a working class community where the stress and high risks of working in a refinery are balanced by the comic, high-wire antics of the plant workers. (Rollercoaster Entertainment, Blink49 Studios)

THE TRAITORS: CANADA – CTV *previously announced

This unscripted competition series, which has become a global TV phenomenon, follows a group of contestants – including some familiar faces – who live together as they complete a series of challenges with the goal of earning a cash prize. The catch? Some of the contestants are traitors who will attempt to deceive and manipulate their way to the prize instead of sharing it amongst the group. In this psychological adventure will the traitors be unmasked in time? (Entourage Télévision. Originally conceived in the Netherlands by IDTV, an All3Media company, the format was further developed with the RTL Creative Unit and produced by IDTV. All3Media International represents format rights for THE TRAITORS.)

New English-Language Documentaries and Specials:

299 QUEEN STREET WEST – Crave *previously announced

Directed by Sean Menard, and with unprecedented access to the MuchMusic archives, the two-hour feature tells the origin story and meteoric rise of the seminal music and pop culture brand, highlighting its beginnings as a scrappy Canadian television upstart. 299 QUEEN STREET WEST is narrated by some of the original trailblazing VJ’s, who at the time had no prior TV hosting experience, received no direction, no scripts, and broadcasted live across the country. The film showcases how MuchMusic’s rise in popularity intersected with rap music entering the mainstream, the birth of grunge and alternative rock, and pop stars caused teenage hysteria at the iconic street level studio. VJ’s and iconic personalities featured include Steve Anthony, Rick Campanelli, Monika Deol, Denise Donlon, Erica Ehm, Namugenyi Kiwanuka, Sook-Yin Lee, George Stroumboulopoulos, Bill Welychka, and Michael Williams. (Menard/Molly Ye)

ANY OTHER WAY: THE JACKIE SHANE STORY – Crave *previously announced

This new documentary tells the tale of the extraordinary life and mysterious disappearance of pioneering soul singer and Black Transgender trailblazer, Jackie Shane. Her story is brought vibrantly to life through intimate recorded conversations with Jackie, and follows her family’s journey to discover her legacy, and the voices of those who were inspired by her tenacity to be herself. Directed by Michael Mabbott and Lucah Rosenberg-Lee, and executive produced by Elliot Page of Page Boy Productions. (Banger Films, National Film Board of Canada)


In a world desperate for hope, THE ART OF DANCE ignites inspiration and dares us to come alive by tracing the evolutionary healing power of movement, music, culture, and community. Innovative and immersive, this cinematic documentary experience awakens our souls, through the beauty and courage of some of the world’s most celebrated dancers on a journey of connection. Featuring Shad, Ken Swift, Lady C, Maria Torres, Maykel Fonts, BBOY Neguin, and Moncell Durden. THE ART OF DANCE is directed and produced by Kevin John Fitzgerald, produced by Anand Ramayya, alongside Executive Producers Lindsay Macadam, Maija Garcia, Aloe Blacc, and Shad. (Hip Hop Films, Karma Film)

AUDIOPHILIA – ADVENTURES IN THE WORLD OF HI-FI – Crave *previously announced

From acclaimed director Ron Mann, AUDIOPHILIA – ADVENTURES IN THE WORLD OF HI-FI is the story about the love of listening to music on the world’s best stereo equipment. The film profiles the inventors, designers, and major-league audiophiles, engaged in the never-ending quest to find audio nirvana. The film is a deep dive into the subculture of sonic obsessives around the world who seek out esoteric electronics that are often visually stunning, and turn their homes into audio sanctuaries. (Sphinx Productions)


Bodybuilding, spray-on abs and gender politics: welcome to the world of BEAUTY KINGS, a documentary exploring the transitioning nature of masculinity through the lives of men from different countries as they compete in a leading international male beauty pageant. Directed by Garry Tutte. Supervising Producer Sarah Fodey, Consulting Producers Evan Wexler and Sarah Sahaigan. Featuring Frankie Cena. (Morro Creative)


From director Nicole Bazuin, MODERN WHORE is a hybrid documentary that reimagines popular depictions of sex work through the lived experiences of writer, performer, and sex worker, Andrea Werhun. Based on her memoir Modern Whore, Andrea grapples with social stigma and reclaims her narrative in a series of funny, heartbreaking, and surprising stories. Directed by Nicole Bazuin and Produced by Lauren Grant, Nicole Bazuin and Andrea Werhun. (Clique Pictures, Virgin Twins)

NAKED: SEX AND GENDER – Crave *previously announced

A documentary feature film about the gender binary. What is it? How does it manifest itself in our minds and our lives? And how can we go beyond? NAKED follows individuals and communities, experts and artists around the globe who right now, are radically and joyfully redefining gender as we know it. Together, they explore their vision of a future beyond the gender binary. Directed by Stephanie Weimar. Executive Producer is Michael McMahon. Producers are Kevin McMahon and Michael McMahon. (Primitive Entertainment)


POSTNATURAL is a provocative feature documentary that travels to the freaky frontiers of a new synthetic biological age. Has “nature” ceased to exist? Mingling pop culture with science and humour with horror, this visually inventive film follows Richard Pell, founder of the world’s first Center for PostNatural History, and meets the visionary scientists, artists, and storytellers who are engineering new life forms and imagining a science-fictional future that few of us can fathom. Directed by Brett Story and co-directed Ben Travers, POSTNATURAL is a timely epic that explores our nostalgia for a world that was, while also finding beauty, possibility, and risk in the weird world that could be. Produced by Stuart Henderson. (90th Parallel Productions)


The Russell Peters documentary tells the story of his humble and adversarial beginnings in Brampton Ontario, to his current standing today as one of the world’s top international comedians. Directed by Thyrone Tommy (Learn to Swim), and executive producers are Randy Lennox and Kevin Barton. (Loft Entertainment)


SINGHS IN THE RING is a feature documentary based on the wildly colourful, outrageously animated, pile-driving phenomenon of the Singh wrestling dynasty. Follow us as we wind back the clock to the infectiously fun 1970s era wrestling and the emergence of a Punjabi immigrant now known as the legendary Gama Singh of Stampede Wrestling, and witness the continuation of that professional wrestling lineage in current day with Gama’s son, Raj. Directed by Akash Sherman and produced by Shane Fennessey, Adam Scorgie, and Sunny Sidhu. (Fennessey Films, Score G Productions, FMT Productions)

SMOKE & GIFTS: IT’S ALL GONNA BREAK – Crave *previously announced

Filmmaker Stephen Chung pulls back the curtain on the Toronto indie music scene through his relationship with his friends in the trailblazing band, Broken Social Scene. This unconventional POV documentary features Chung’s never-before-seen archival footage capturing a creatively rich era in Toronto and paying tribute to the power of indie music, friendship and the artists who started out in Toronto bars before rocketing to global fame. Produced by Ann Shin, Hannah Donegan, Diana Warme. (Fathom Film Group)

WILFRED BUCK – Crave *previously announced

WILFRED BUCK is a hybrid feature documentary centring on a Cree elder and Indigenous star knowledge keeper. Weaving together his harrowing past and his present life with sky stories, this cinematic film explores colonization’s attempts to extinguish Indigenous ways of knowing, the values of interrelationship that shape Indigenous science, and how this worldview paves a healthier path forward for us and our planet. Directed by Lisa Jackson. Producers are Lisa Jackson, Alicia Smith, and Lauren Grant. Executive producers are David Christensen, Nicholas de Pencier, and Jennifer Baichwal. (Door Number 3 in co-production with the National Film Board)

New French-Language Series:

The following new series are part of Noovo, Canal Vie, Z, Canal D, and Crave’s 2023/24 slate, with additional titles to be announced in the coming months.

LES TRAÎTRES – Noovo *previously announced

A group of eager contestants move into a majestic manor. Their goal? To work as a team to complete a series of missions to earn silver bars for their bank. The catch? Some of the contestants are traitors who will attempt to deceive and manipulate their way to the prize instead of sharing it amongst the group. In this gripping psychological format, will they be unmasked in time? Karine Vanasse hosts reality TV. (Entourage Télévision)

APRÈS LE DÉLUGE – Noovo *previously announced

Across six 60-minute episodes, this series, set in the heart of Montreal’s red-light district, tells the story of Maxime Salomon, a rogue cop who takes four young people with troubled backgrounds under her wing — including Dylane, a “bad girl” whose charms are hard to resist. To help them avoid getting a criminal record, Maxime introduces them to mixed martial arts. This decision is far from popular among his colleagues, and Dylane could pay a high price for it. Will fighting fire with fire break the vicious circle of violence in which these young people have been trapped for too long? (Zone3 and ZAMA Productions)

COLOSSE PLAMONDON – Canal D *previously announced

COLOSSE PLAMONDON chronicles the case of Yves Plamondon, found guilty of a triple homicide in 1986 and sentenced to life imprisonment. After years of proclaiming his innocence, he was cleared of all charges in 2014. The docuseries looks back on 30 years of legal twists and turns, allegations of conspiracy and false testimonies. (Productions J)

COUPLES EN SURVIE – Canal Vie *previously announced

To test the strength of their love, couples must survive in a hostile environment for 36 hours. Accompanied by a survival expert and a relationship professional, Kim Rusk hosts this challenging series that tests couples to their limits. The experts and Kim Rusk will provide feedback, analysis and commentary on the participants’ experiences. For their part, the couples will play for all they’ve got: it’s make or break! (Productions Lustitia)

CRINQUÉS : SOUS LE CAPOT – Z *previously announced

Follow Pierre Michaud on a quest driven by passion and mechanical engineering. While fixing up a Pontiac GTO 1966, he takes viewers inside a community of “gearheads” who devote their lives to restoring vintage automobiles. Discover a community where time is no obstacle when pursuing their obsession with the world’s most iconic cars! (TORQ-Océan)

DÉMASQUÉS – Canal D *previously announced

Everyone remembers celebrities whose lies have been publicly exposed. But there are liars everywhere: it could be an uncle, a friend, a colleague. Through the investigations that ripped their web of deceit to shreds, viewers will learn why liars spin their stories and what the consequences are in this docuseries. (KOTV)

LA GUERRE DES FANS – Noovo *previously announced

Hosted by Phil Roy, this epic variety game show with an electric atmosphere promises to be the most thrilling music competition on TV. Each week, four celebrities will compete in highly entertaining musical games, trying to score the maximum number of points and book their place in the next round. While 16 stars will seek to prove they’re the biggest music fan of all, only one will take home the coveted Superfan crown at the end of the ten episodes. (Pixcom)

INSPIREZ EXPIREZ – Crave *previously announced

Sophie and Vicky are young women in their early 30s who belong to the same circle of friends but dislike each other, having nothing in common except the date when they were born. This year, they receive the same birthday present from their girlfriends: a gift certificate for a yoga retreat deep in the woods. It proves disastrous for both, as they struggle with sharing the same cabin. Their enforced downtime takes a shocking turn when the dead body of a participant is found in the forest. When they’re required to stay on site during a police investigation they consider useless, Sophie and Vicky team up to identify the killer, save themselves, and might even learn to appreciate one another. (Avanti-Toast)

LE POIDS DE L’APPARENCE – Crave *previously announced

This unique and powerful documentary explores eating disorders, a problem that affects men and women, both young and old. Following Phil Roy as he wonders about the mental health issues surrounding weight and body image, this documentary seeks to understand the insidious ways that an obsession with physical appearance can become part of our thinking and create extremely troubling problems. (Trinome & Filles)

PLEIN GAZ – Z *previously announced

PLEIN GAZ immerses viewers in the world of recreational auto racing in Québec. From road racing to drifting competitions, the series covers various activities that appeal to speed lovers. It takes viewers inside the lives of entrepreneurs Jason Labrosse and Elie Arsenault, who are major players in ICAR Route 66, while also following Benoit Gagnon’s participation in the Nissan Sentra Cup as he drives that model for the first time. Throughout the series, these two worlds come together through Benoît, Élie and Jason as they share their experiences with each other. (Attraction)

PLUS OU MOINS MISÉRABLE – Noovo *previously announced

Hosted by Eve Côté, PLUS OU MOINS MISÉRABLE is a hilarious game show where one person’s sadness is another’s happiness. Outrageous true stories from around the world are evaluated by experts in human behaviour, who assign these incidents a score from 0 to 100 based on the physical pain and emotional shock suffered by the participants and the potential long-term psychological impacts. Two teams made up of a contestant and a celebrity face off against each other, trying to guess what score was given to each unfortunate — but oh-so-funny — incident on the “misery scale.” From “you were struck by lightning… three times!” to “You accidentally sent a sexy photo of yourself to your mom,” the contestant who makes the most accurate guesses has the chance to win $3,000! (KOTV)

PROJET INNOCENCE – Noovo *previously announced

During an internship at Projet Innocence, law student Stella Launière is supervised by renowned criminologist Armand Coupal. The condemned man whose innocence she must prove, Anderson Jean-Louis, is an infamous criminal responsible for misdeeds just as bad as the murder of which he claims to be falsely accused. Stella will learn the truth of Coupal’s words: “To prove the innocence of the accused, you have to get your hands dirty.” (ALSO)

TAXI PAYANT : L’ESCOUADE – Noovo *previously announced

The only game show that takes place on board a moving vehicle! In this new version of the popular game show CASH CAB, a team of larger-than-life celebrity drivers pick up groups of passengers for the most profitable cab ride of their lives. Throughout the trip, each driver poses general-knowledge questions to the passengers, gradually increasing the difficulty level. Each right answer is worth $25, $50 or $100. But there’s a catch: the passengers are only allowed to get two wrong. The third time, they’ll be kicked out of the cab without any money, even if they haven’t reached the destination. If they complete the trip, the chauffeur will offer them a double-or-nothing question. Will they win big… or lose everything? (Zone3)

TOUT POUR VENDRE – Canal Vie *previously announced

Using the help of the DuProprio, an agent free real-estate assistance service, Mélissa Bédard meets with homeowners who want to sell their home without an agent. She gives them a challenge: estimate how long it will take to sell their property — for a $1,000 prize! To maximize their chances of winning, the sellers are assisted by notaries, real estate experts, sales representatives and appraisers. Designer Jacinthe Leroux proposes two choices for improving the interior of their home, and with a budget of $5,000 and labour, they must decide which option will allow them to make a quick sale at the best price. From appraisal to renovations to open houses, each step in the selling process is covered in this new show that ticks all the boxes. (Zone3)


Corus Entertainment delivers a diverse lineup of Canadian original content across its beloved brands

From a media release:

Today, Corus Entertainment announces its upcoming lineup of new and returning premium original content for 2023/2024. This includes a total of 25 new and returning series, with 11 titles from Corus Studios and eight from Nelvana.

With programming sold to more than 150 countries around the globe, Corus Studios has proven itself a leader in original Canadian lifestyle and unscripted content, extending its catalogue with 11 new and returning titles across Top 10 specialty stations*, Food Network Canada, HGTV Canada, and The HISTORY® Channel. Nelvana maintains its position as a world-renowned international producer and distributor of children’s animated and live-action content, with programming seen in over 180 countries around the world. This year is no exception, with eight new and returning series coming soon to Corus’ leading kids’ networks, Treehouse and YTV.


Food Network Canada
A Top 10 specialty network* and the ultimate culinary destination, Food Network Canada’s esteemed culinary competition series Top Chef Canada, a Top 10 specialty entertainment series last year*, makes its epic return for Season 11 (8×60) expected to premiere in late 2024. A new roster of revered chefs will put it all on the line during this fierce and fiery culinary face-off, competing to take home the title of Canada’s Top Chef. During this season’s fast-paced challenges, the chefs must impress Top Chef Canada’s acclaimed judging panel, as well as notable names from the culinary world who will join each week as guest judges and tasters. Top Chef Canada is the homegrown version of the hit Emmy® Award-winning NBCUniversal Series Top Chef.

Corus Studios’ The Big Bake will tantalize taste buds and hype up the holidays this fall with Season 4 (7×60 Halloween and 7×60 Holiday) of the larger-than-life themed baking series. Each episode of this fun-filled baking competition series gives three professional baking teams only five hours to design, bake and decorate a grand-scale cake creation based on a particular theme. In the end, the most ambitious, eye-popping and delicious cake will go home with a $10,000 prize.

HGTV Canada
HGTV Canada holds its position as the nation’s destination for all things home. The Top 5 specialty network* has inspiring and heart-warming programming that fits any style. Viewers can look forward to a two-episode tease of the new Corus Studios series, Bryan’s All In (10×60) this fall, with the rest of the season airing in spring 2024. The series sees HGTV Canada star Bryan Baeumler travels off-the-beaten path to help struggling entrepreneurs renovate their businesses. These are ambitious dreamers who are risking it all for their passion projects, making major life changes to become their own boss – just like Bryan did. In each episode, Bryan hits the open road in his RV, spending a week helping a budding business owner through a make-or-break point in their reno. He acts as their coach and mentor, helping them overcome major hurdles, while tackling key builds in a race to open or revive their business.

The network’s #2 program last summer, Corus Studios’ Scott’s Vacation House Rules also returns with new episodes this fall (7×60), with Scott McGillivray using his five rules to turn problem properties into profit. Along with designer Debra Salmoni, Scott unlocks the hidden rental potential of even the most neglected properties, updating and reviving them into unique and buzz-worthy places of paradise. As previously announced, this series has also been greenlit for Season 5, as part of HGTV Canada and Scott McGillivray’s four-year production commitment and exclusivity deal, and will air in the spring of 2024.

The network’s late 2024 schedule is expected to feature a diverse round-up of new and returning Corus Studios series. Hollywood icon Pamela Anderson returns for Season 2 of Pamela’s Garden of Eden (8×60), which ranked within the Top 10 of Canadian original series across specialty television last fall. Also returning for a Season 2 is Gut Job (8×60) following seasoned builder Sebastian Clovis tackling down-to-the-studs renovations; and Hoarder House Flippers (8×60), a Top 10 program on the network last summer, featuring three sets of flippers transforming dilapidated houses. Fan-favourite Rock Solid Builds (8×60), a Top 20 specialty entertainment series last spring**, kicks off Season 3, showcasing even more unique and challenging builds by Randy Spracklin and his crew in Newfoundland. Joining the HGTV Canada lineup in late 2024 is the new series House of Ali (8×60), following no-nonsense luxury home designer Ali Budd and her all-female firm, responsible for designing some of the most bespoke and upscale homes in North America.

The HISTORY® Channel
A Top 10 specialty network, The HISTORY® Channel spotlights true stories, big adventures, and a diversity of underrepresented voices with its slate of six new and returning factual and documentary titles. In honour of Canada’s National Day of Truth and Reconciliation, picking up where Part 1 left off, True Story Part 2 (1×120), examines the painful legacy of the Indian Act and Residential School system on Indigenous peoples, the Sixties Scoop, the rise of Indigenous political movements and the role of Indigenous veterans in Canada’s military. This Remembrance Day, Our War Part 2 (2×60), will shine a light on extraordinary Canadians who made heroic contributions to WWI and WWII. From the descendant of a World War I nurse killed in a war crime to a Japanese Canadian survivor of World War II internment camp, the docu-series follow descendants as they investigate the harrowing secrets their ancestors took to the grave.

Then in winter, the premium limited documentary series Sounds Black (4×60) examines the origins and impact of Black Music in Canada. Directed by award-winning filmmaker Cazhhmere, with contributions from legends including Kardinal Offishall, Jully Black, Fefe Dobson, Maestro Fresh Wes, Deborah Cox, Keisha Chante and more, the series explores Black Canadian music from its tangled diasporic roots to its international dominance. A Top 10 program on the network last fall, Deadman’s Curse returns for Season 2 (8×60), with more adventures following the diverse team of explorers on their epic search for legendary lost gold in B.C. Ahead of the second season premiering next spring, the Corus Studios series has already been greenlit for a third season. The series is complemented by a previously announced companion podcast from Curiouscast, Deadman’s Curse: Slumach’s Gold. Hosted by series star Kru Williams, the podcast takes listeners deeper into the history of Slumach’s legacy.

Rounding out the spring lineup of Corus Studios series, Rust Valley Restorers (8×60), a Top 5 program on the network last spring***, returns for Season 5, offering classic car fanatics some fresh adventures from Mike, Avery and Connor; as well as Season 2 of Backroad Truckers (8×60) following the wildest band of road runners as they crisscross the unforgiving terrain of Western Canada with bigger jobs, bigger machines, and even bigger feuds.

Hosted Segments
Following the success of the short-form content series W Network’s Movie Date, hosted by Sarah Keenleyside, Brittnee Blair, and Noah Cappe, and Showcase’s Watch Party, hosted by Fred Kennedy, HGTV Canada and Food Network Canada will introduce their own branded models this fall. HGTV Canada’s DIY Studio will be hosted by Sebastian Clovis, Sarah Keenleyside and Kenny Brain and is designed to grab viewers’ attention with quick tips and fixes for their home renovation projects throughout the network’s linear broadcast. Food Network Canada’s hosted segments will be helmed by Chef Anna Olson who will be serving up all things delicious in snackable broadcast & digital content pieces that help audiences discover their next great recipe.


This summer, the mystery continues with The Hardy Boys’ third and final season (8×60) premiering on YTV. Based on the beloved books by Franklin W. Dixon and nominated for a Daytime Emmy® Award and seven Canadian Screen Awards, things pick up where the shocking events of Season 2 left off. The Hardy boys and their friends dig up even more secrets, conspiracies, and threats as they piece together their great-grandfather’s long-lost map and race against time to uncover a powerful ancient relic before it falls into the wrong hands.

Best & Bester (6×30) also returns with the pair of hilariously individual twins continuing their adventures living in a weird and wonderful alternate reality where your neighbour could be a pair of disgruntled trousers or your best friend a floating cloud of bottom burp. Up next, based on the best-selling book series and produced by Corus Entertainment’s Aircraft Pictures and WexWorks Media, Popularity Papers (26×30) continues to follow middle-school besties Julie and
Lydia on their quest to demystify one of life’s greatest questions: what makes someone popular? Every social experiment they test comes with unexpected lessons about the value of friendship, kindness, and confidence, helping guide our characters through the struggles of middle school with humour and heart.

Treehouse original series Builder Brothers Dream Factory gets ready to GEAR UP and GET IT DONE with new episodes (10×11) beginning this fall. Distributed by Nelvana and co-produced by Sinking Ship Entertainment and Scott Brothers Entertainment, twin brothers Drew and Jonathan continue to use their extraordinary imagination, creativity, grit, and heart – coupled with a big dose of TWINSPIRATION to help friends and solve problems in the neighbourhood by dreaming big. Fans of Thomas & Friends franchise can look forward to a new special with the beloved engines in Thomas & Friends: The Great Bubbly Build (1×30) airing this fall. The special sees Sandy and Carly set out to make an art project together, but when their ideas clash and the project fails, they learn that it needs the right mix of both ideas to succeed.

Agent Binky: Pets of the Universe, Season 3 continues (10×30) with more fur-raising adventures on Treehouse this summer and fall. Produced by redknot, a joint venture between Nelvana and Warner Bros. Discovery, P.U.R.S.T. agents Binky, Gracie, Gordon, Loo and Nola are ready to soar into new adventures and protect their human families and the entire world from even more aliens, robots, and the WURST villains. Packed with action, humour, and heart, the third season features fun-themed episodes and missions that are literally out-of-this-world.
This fall also sees the premiere of Nelvana short film Jelly (1×13), an inspirational modern fairy tale. The film follows Molly, a fiercely talented artist, debating whether to pursue her creative passion or work a soul-sucking factory job. She can’t decide until she meets a mysterious liquid spirit who takes her on an exhilarating journey of self-discovery and helps make the choice easy.

Next summer, the Nelvana-produced series Millie Magnificent (52×11) premieres, inspired by Canadian author-illustrator Ashley Spires’ popular children’s book, The Most Magnificent Thing, published by Kids Can Press. With a spark of imagination and endless determination, Millie and her Creato-crew friends, Maya and Ben, together with her adorable canine assistant, Wallace, strive to find the most magnificent solutions to their neighbourhood’s challenges.


New and returning Canadian original series to Citytv include Law & Order Toronto: Criminal Intent, Hudson & Rex

From a media release:


Premiering on OMNI Television this Sunday, June 11 are two new original series, including the comedy Our Big Punjabi Family and five-part documentary series Katiba Banat: Sisters in Arms, plus an all-new season of Filipino sketch comedy ABROAD.

Starting at 7:30 p.m. ET is Our Big Punjabi Family, a mixed Punjabi and English-language comedy series about a family therapist Sitara (played by Arshdeep Purba) and her family who are forced to move in with her husband’s traditional Punjabi in-laws after they lose their money in a bad investment. Following Our Big Punjabi Family is a new season of ABROAD. Produced in collaboration with Longhope Media Inc., Season 2 of ABROAD – the hit Filipino sketch comedy series – will premiere with eight, all-new 30-minute episodes in English and Tagalog at 8:30 p.m. ET. Co-created by and starring Filipina comedian Isabel Kanaan (Second Jen, Air Farce NYE, This Hour Has 22 Minutes), ABROAD is a Canadian Screen Award-nominated series based on the immigrant experience in Canada. Then, at 9:30 p.m. ET, the premiere of Adhel Arop’s Katiba Banat: Sisters in Arms – a five-part docuseries that uncovers the previously hidden stories of Canadian women who helped to liberate South Sudan.

As announced on Monday, Citytv has greenlit the all-new, one-hour crime drama Law & Order Toronto: Criminal Intent, an adaptation of the legendary Law & Order brand, slated to air on Citytv in Spring 2024.

And, as announced earlier this year, Citytv has greenlit an all-new season of Canada’s Got Talent – Citytv’s most-viewed original series in over a decade – in partnership with McGillivray Entertainment Media Inc., Fremantle, and SYCO Entertainment. New for next season, the winner of Canada’s Got Talent Season 3 will receive $1,000,000 – the biggest cash prize in Canadian television history – courtesy of Rogers. That’s not all! CIBC is awarding each of the six Golden Buzzer recipients next season with $25,000 each, totalling $150,000, to help realize their ambitions. Plus, CIBC will provide the Season 3 winner with financial advice. Applications are open now on Citytv.com.


Preview: Yukon Harvest’s connections continue in Season 2

A word often used in Yukon Harvest is “connection.” A connection with nature. A connection with language. A connection with tradition. It’s an important—essential, really—part of the show.

Returning for Season 2 on Saturday at 7 p.m. ET on APTN in English and Monday in Northern Tutchone (a language spoken in the Yukon communities of Mayo, Pelly Crossing, Stewart Crossing, Carmacks and Beaver Creek), the 13-episode Yukon Harvest documents Indigenous guides and hunters as they journey into the remote lands to connect with the land, share in culture and give back to the community.

Saturday’s return, “Yegwúp/To Grow Strong, Part 1,” kicks off in Tkʼemlúps, B.C., where we catch up with and get the story of hunting guide Ed Jensen. A member of the Secwepemc Nation, Ed is committed to handing down the skills that have been passed down for thousands of years, and through his parents, who were both in residential schools. He and Aaron, a young man Ed mentored over 20 years ago, head out into the hills in hopes of hunting a deer large enough to fulfill a meat order for a family in need. But taking down a large buck is just the first step in a ceremonial process that includes a gift of tobacco, mourning the animal, taking a piece of the heart and liver to honour their ancestors and honouring the animal and its meat, which is going to feed others.

Saturday’s episode isn’t all about trekking into beautiful, rugged land to provide for others. In stark contrast is Ed reflecting on what his parents, and countless other Indigenous peoples, endured at residential schools across the country. There is sobering footage of stuffed animals placed at the base of the Kamloops Indian Residential School Monument, and Ed’s relief that the kids he mentors don’t live with the horrors of those schools as his parents did.

True to the show’s title, Ed jets to the Yukon for the episode’s final act. After arriving in Whitehorse, Ed meets up with Evan, who first hunted with Ed over two years ago. And while it’s an opportunity for Evan to show Ed his hunting grounds and skills, this trip allows Ed to evaluate Evan too. How is this young man adapting the traditional ways, and connecting with his ancestors? It’s a truly fulfilling experience for both.

Yukon Harvest airs Saturdays at 7 p.m. ET on APTN.

Image courtesy of APTN.