Tag Archives: Netflix

Anne with an E: Lucas Jade Zumann describes Gilbert’s Season 2 journey

While Anne Shirley has been experiencing life in Avonlea and all that entails—school, friendship, chores and two sneaky grifters—Gilbert Blythe has been on an adventure of his own in Season 2 of Anne with an E.

Leaving Prince Edward Island following the death of his father, Gilbert has been shovelling coal into a ship’s boiler alongside Bash in the Caribbean. The two have established a strong friendship, and there has been great personal growth for Gilbert already. It’s not clear exactly when Gilbert will return to Avonlea—it depends on how fast Anne’s letter reaches him—and Lucas Jade Zumann won’t tell me.

I spoke to Zumann earlier this year about how he was cast in the role, what’s in store for Gilbert this year and his plan to study … astrophysics and quantum theory.

Gilbert’s got a lot going on from what I’ve seen so far in Season 2.
Lucas Jade Zumann: Yeah. Absolutely, I think he’s getting a much more worldly perspective during Season 2. Even more so than I think the character had in the book. [Showrunner Moira Walley-Beckett] is really writing in between the pages on this one and really adding a lot to his character’s backstory. I think it’s really important and it lends a lot to his natural worldly character that he has in the book. And I think that this journey of his kind of, it lends an explanation to Gilbert’s perspective.

How did you end up with the role in the first place? 
LJZ: It wasn’t actually very traditional. When I got the offer for the audition, I was on tour for the publicity for 20th Century Women, a film that I did. And the director of 20th Century Women worked with the producer of Anne with an E. She liked the film. She saw the film early and she liked my work and she requested that I read for the role. So I came in, the first thing I did was actually a chemistry read with Amybeth McNulty. And then after that point, it was maybe a couple of weeks before my agent called me and let me know that I had gotten the role of Gilbert Blythe.

To be skipping that step because executive producer Miranda de Pencier had seen you and thought that you’d be a good fit … were you a little bit extra nervous going into this?
LJZ: Oh, absolutely, especially considering the rank of these people that were sitting at the table in front of me. I mean, Moira Walley-Beckett is a phenomenal writer and director and I have been inspired by her work for many years beforehand. Just sitting in a room with these people is intimidating. Even the waiting room. I was, yeah, I was very nervous to say the least. I’m just really lucky that we kind of clicked in a certain way.

Gilbert lost his father in Season 1. That was a very dark and serious storyline that you had to take on.
LJZ: Yeah. Absolutely. I think losing his father was a huge deal for Gilbert’s growth and it pushed him to grow up really fast and have to start supporting himself and discovering his own place in the world. I think being in school just … and then having to support yourself, just in a little life change like that, I can only imagine how hard that must be for a person. And the kind of toll that that has on their personality. I think that lends a lot to his mentality and his maturity.

Where’s Gilbert’s head at in Season 2?
LJZ: I think he’s just so excited to be exploring parts of the world. I think he’s so accustomed to the way of life in Avonlea, where it’s snow almost all year and just farm work every single day. And I think that just being on a boat and even just shovelling coal, like, that was, that’s part of the exploration for him. I definitely can see that in my own life, too. I mean, I personally like working in a restaurant in my free time, just simply because it’s a more mindful type of workspace, in a restaurant. And I appreciate that there so many different roles that people can play in this world. I think Gilbert is taking the time in to explore that.

What can you say about his relationship with Sebastian?
LJZ: Sebastian really is kind of his leader to the world outside of Avonlea. I think when Gilbert leaves Avonlea, all he knows is, well, I mean, he’s been surrounded by white people and this culture, this European Canadian culture that he’s had his whole life. Seeing Trinidad and seeing what it’s like on a steamship, all the other trials that he goes through, I think that being with Sebastian and seeing that these are trials that people like him would go through on a daily basis just to survive.

That grants him perspective. Coming from a classroom full of people worried about what they’re going to wear the next day, to people worried about how they’re going to eat the next day. That was something that’s really important for him to understand. There’s a whole other world outside of Avonlea.

Is there something that you’re working on now that you can talk about? Are you back working in a restaurant? 
LJZ: Well, I just took a break from the restaurant because I am starting my senior year in high school. Which I did not necessarily think I was going to go back and do because I did take my GED. I tested out of high school, but I don’t have enough credits to apply for a college and make it look cool. I don’t have all the college credits that I would need.

I do eventually want to go back and I really am interested in studying astrophysics and quantum theory. That would definitely require some mathematics or history, you know. Coming back to school with that kind of new drive for learning, specifically with the astrophysics, understanding that calculus and math is like the language of how we humans quantify and understand things about our universe, it could be beyond our perception, I’m so fascinated by that. I really want to explore everything that we can about the universe that we live in.

Anne with an E airs Sundays at 7 p.m. on CBC.

Image courtesy of CBC.

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CFC and Netflix announce new partnership

From a media release:

The Canadian Film Centre (CFC) and Netflix proudly announced at the CFC Annual BBQ Fundraiser today the start of their new five-year partnership in support of Canadian talent. Using a model of three distinct program accelerators, the initiative will amplify these voices and stories so that they resonate globally, showcasing Canadian talent within and beyond its borders.

The Netflix-CFC Global Project partnership will foster and accelerate a broad scope of diverse Canadian creators and their film/TV projects, and will advance Canadian talent and opportunities in the international marketplace through one of three accelerators:

  • The Calling Card Accelerator: Expands opportunities for new creators to showcase their talent through a produced calling card and realize the potential of their feature film or TV series project through a produced proof of concept.
  • The Project Development Accelerator: Bolsters the international reach of dramatic feature films or TV series from mid-level diverse creators, by offering them enhanced and tailored access to development support and inspired global perspectives.
  • The Marketplace Accelerator: Strengthens the festival/market preparedness of diverse creators with exciting projects and/or produced content looking to attract and secure international attention and investment.

Each accelerator will adopt a bespoke approach based on the select creator’s needs and project.

Through their multi-year partnership, CFC and Netflix will deliver this suite of complementary, essential opportunities for these vibrant talent pools to flourish, shining a spotlight on their stories in an evolving global marketplace.

In recognition of Netflix’s generous commitment to our creative community, Netflix will become the Presenting Sponsor of CFC’s Annual Gala & Auction, CFC’s Annual BBQ Fundraiser, CFC’s Annual Garden Party and CFC’s Annual Reception in L.A. In addition, a restored cottage on the CFC campus will become the newly named Netflix House, enabling all the different groups of talent to mingle, connect and collaborate in a shared central hub of creative activity.

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Link: ‘Kim’s Convenience’ actor Simu Liu on being an accountant, his big break, and ‘Crazy Rich Asians’ momentum

From Traci G. Lee of NBC News:

Link: ‘Kim’s Convenience’ actor Simu Liu on being an accountant, his big break, and ‘Crazy Rich Asians’ momentum
“I can say that it’s probably funnier than it’s ever been. I remember being on set for the first season and every day being scared we were going to get fired. And I feel like we all, to some degree, felt that anxiety because we knew how important the show was and none of us wanted to let it down or let each other down.” Continue reading.

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Link: Anne with an E’s Moira Walley-Beckett is the most significant new Canadian showrunner in a generation

From Tony Wong of The Toronto Star:

Link: Anne with an E’s Moira Walley-Beckett is the most significant new Canadian showrunner in a generation
“I had to approach it from a point of emotional reality. Anne is a damaged person. She is a wounded person as are Matthew (R.H. Thomson) and Marilla Cuthbert (Geraldine James) in my mind. I felt that it was extremely important to honour what it was like to be an orphan back then when you were viewed as a delinquent and unlovable and ungodly. There was great prejudice and great harm done.” Continue reading.

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CBC and Netflix renew Northwood Entertainment’s Anne with an E for a third season

From a media release:

CBC and Netflix have renewed the award-winning ANNE WITH AN E from Northwood Entertainment for a highly anticipated third season (10 x 60). Inspired by the timeless Canadian novel Anne of Green Gables by Lucy Maud Montgomery, the third season of ANNE WITH AN E will continue to tell the coming-of-age story of an outsider who, against all odds and numerous challenges, fights for acceptance, for her place in the world, and for love.

The renewal comes shortly after the US and international debut of the series’ second season (10 x 60) on Netflix in July, and just ahead of the Canadian premiere of season two on CBC, the CBC TV streaming app and cbc.ca/watch on Sunday, September 23 at 7 p.m. (7:30 NT).

Executive producers Walley-Beckett (BREAKING BAD, FLESH AND BONE) and de Pencier (BEGINNERS, THANKS FOR SHARING) team up once again to re-immerse audiences in Anne’s world in Avonlea. The new season is expected to begin production this winter for launch on CBC and Netflix later in 2019.

ANNE WITH AN E received 13 Canadian Screen Award nominations in 2018 – the most of any series nominated – and was awarded Best Drama Series for Walley-Beckett and de Pencier. Walley-Beckett also won a Writer’s Guild of Canada award for writing, “I Am No Bird, And No Net Ensnares Me,” and Showrunner of the Year at the Rockie Awards as part of the 2018 Banff World Media Festival. ANNE WITH AN E was also awarded Playback’s magazine’s “Show of the Year” honour in 2017 and Art of the Title’s “Best Title Sequence” for the opening sequence of the show.

Building on the stellar success of the first two seasons, ANNE WITH AN E season 3 will continue to chart bold new territory, adding new characters and storylines while exploring themes of identity, prejudice, feminism, bullying, gender parity, diversity and empowerment through the lens of its fierce, starry-eyed, irrepressible 16-year-old protagonist. While ANNE WITH AN E will continue to honour the foundation of L. M. Montgomery’s novel, a Canadian treasure and global phenomenon, the series’ third season will creatively evolve. Ever transforming Avonlea with her unique spirit, fierce intellect and brilliant imagination, Anne and the rest of the characters will experience thrilling adventures as they explore timeless themes of identity, deceit, sexism, racism, bullying, prejudice, and empowerment.

A CBC and Netflix original series, ANNE WITH AN E is produced by Northwood Entertainment and created by Moira Walley-Beckett. The executive producers are Miranda de Pencier, Moira Walley-Beckett, Debra Hayward and Alison Owen.

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