Tag Archives: Sort Of

CBC and HBO Max renew Sort Of for a second season

From a media release:

CBC and HBO Max have renewed SORT OF for a second season, it was announced today. Created by Bilal Baig (Acha Bacha) and Fab Filippo (Save Me), the critically acclaimed CBC and Max Original comedy debuted on HBO Max in November 2021 following its Canadian premiere on CBC Gem in October 2021. The series was an official selection of the 2021 Toronto International Film Festival and made The Hollywood Reporter, The Globe and Mail and Vanity Fair’s Best TV Shows of 2021 lists. SORT OF also leads this year’s Canadian Screen Award nominations with 13 nods, including Best Comedy Series.

“We are so thrilled that we are able to dive back into the worlds of SORT OF, and to keep exploring the evolution of all our characters (including some new ones!) as they continue to investigate who they are in the world as friends, family members, lovers and human beings,” said Bilal Baig, co-creator, showrunner, executive producer and lead actor.

“SORT OF speaks to the complexity of being human in the world with wit, warmth and an authentic sense of inclusivity, thanks to the distinct voices of Bilal and Fab,” said Sally Catto, General Manager, Entertainment, Factual & Sports, CBC. “SORT OF has struck such a powerful chord with audiences, and we are thrilled to work with HBO Max and Sienna Films on the next chapter of Sabi’s story.”

“Baig and Filippo’s honest and insightful storytelling is a lesson in unraveling conventional views of identity,” said Jeniffer Kim, SVP, International Originals, HBO Max. “We could not be more excited to partner with CBC and Sienna Films on another season of this very special show.”

“It’s been a wonderful experience to develop this show from the ground up with Bilal and Fab, and now to have the opportunity in Season 2 to dig even deeper,” said Jennifer Kawaja, executive producer, Sienna Films.

Called “funny, tender, and humane” by NPR, “the kind of representation everyone deserves” by Mashable, and “a small masterpiece of contemporary urban storytelling” by The Globe and Mail, SORT OF follows the journey of “Sabi Mehboob” (Baig), a gender fluid millennial who straddles various identities from sexy bartender at an LGBTQ bookstore/bar, to the youngest child in a large Pakistani family, to the de facto parent of a downtown hipster family. Sabi feels like they’re in transition in every aspect of their life, from gender to love to sexuality to family to career. A coming-of-age story, SORT OF exposes the labels we once poured ourselves into as no longer applicable…to anyone.

The series is created by Bilal Baig and Fab Filippo, who also serve as showrunners and executive producers, and produced with the participation of the Canada Media Fund. Sienna Films’ Jennifer Kawaja is also an executive producer on the series. SORT OF is distributed worldwide by Sphere Media. Abacus Media Rights handles sales outside of the United States and Latin America.

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Nominations announced for the 2022 Canadian Screen Awards

From a media release:

The Academy of Canadian Cinema & Television (the Canadian Academy) announced today the nominees for the 2022 Canadian Screen Awards in 145 film, television, and digital media categories. The awards will be presented over six days during Canadian Screen Week, including the 2022 Canadian Screen Awards show, which will be broadcast on CBC and CBC Gem on Sunday, April 10 at 8:00 PM (9:00 PM AT / 9:30 PM NT).

The inaugural season of the CBC series Sort Of leads both television and overall 2022 Canadian Screen Award nominations with 13, followed by CBC’s Pretty Hard Cases and CTV Sci-Fi Channel’s Wynonna Earp with 11, and CBC’s Coroner and Kim’s Convenience with 10.

In film, Shasha Nakhai and Rich Williamson’s Scarborough and Danis Goulet’s Night Raiders top nominations with 11 per film, while Michael McGowan’s All My Puny Sorrows sees eight and both Bretten Hannam’s Wildhood and Ivan Grbovic’s Drunken Birds | Les oiseaux ivres receive six.

21 Black Futures and For the Record both lead digital media nominations with eight, followed by The Communist’s Daughter with six. 

With hosts and live acceptance speeches, the majority of the 2022 Canadian Screen Awards will be presented in a nine-part series of genre-based virtual shows throughout Canadian Screen Week 2022, all streamed live on Academy.ca — as well as the Canadian Academy Twitter and YouTube channels — from Monday, April 4, 2022, to Friday, April 8, 2022. 

The week will culminate in the 2022 Canadian Screen Awards show on CBC and CBC Gem. With a selection of prominent categories and tributes to this year’s Special Award recipients, the show will be a star-powered, creatively curated treat for fans of our homegrown entertainment, highlighting Canadian content and its notable moments that made us laugh, cry, and reflect over the past year. Featuring the talents of the multi-award-winning sketch comedy troupe TallBoyz (Guled Abdi, Vance Banzo, Tim Blair, and Franco Nguyen), this promises to be an award show like you’ve never seen before, with an eclectic variety of artists coming together for the love of storytelling and a deep appreciation for the power of our film, television, and digital media — and everyone who enjoys it. 

The full schedule for the 2022 Canadian Screen Awards is as follows:

Monday, April 4
7:00 PM ET – The Broadcast News Awards

8:30 PM ET – The Documentary & Factual Awards 

Tuesday, April 5
7:00 PM ET – The Sports Programming Awards, presented by CTV

8:30 PM ET – The Digital & Immersive Awards

Wednesday, April 6
7:00 PM ET – The Children’s & Animation Awards, presented by Shaw Rocket Fund, supported by 9 Story Media Group  

8:30 PM ET – The Lifestyle & Reality Awards, presented by CTV 

Thursday, April 7
7:00 PM ET – The Drama & Comedy Crafts Awards

8:30 PM ET – The Scripted Programs & Performance Awards, presented by CTV

Friday, April 8
8:30 PM ET – The Cinematic Arts Awards, presented by Telefilm Canada, supported by Cineplex

Sunday, April 10
8:00 PM (9:00 PM AT / 9:30 PM NT) – 2022 Canadian Screen Awards on CBC and CBC Gem

The 2022 Canadian Screen Awards will also pay tribute to the 2022 Special Award recipients, a group of eight Canadians who have had a tremendous impact on our media industry. Honourees include Lifetime Achievement Award recipient Bob Cole, Gordon Sinclair Award for Broadcast Journalism recipient Rassi Nashalik, Radius Award (presented by MADE | NOUS) recipient Maitreyi Ramakrishnan, and the inaugural recipients of the Changemaker Award: Kayla Grey, Kathleen Newman-Bremang, and Amanda Parris.

The 2022 nominations were chosen by voting members of the Canadian Academy and by nominating juries, conducted virtually with representatives from the film, television, and digital media industries. The membership will now cast their votes between Tuesday, February 15, 2022, and Friday, March 4, 2022, to determine the winners. 

For the full list of 2022 Canadian Screen Awards nominees, please visit Academy.ca/nominees; view the full schedule for Canadian Screen Week 2022 at Academy.ca/schedule.

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Links: Sort Of, Season 1

From Debra Yeo of the Toronto Star:

Link: In ‘Sort Of,’ a straight white male and a queer brown trans-feminine creator combined to make a groundbreaking TV show
What do you get when a straight, cisgender male actor and director, and a queer, trans-feminine actor and playwright create a television show together? Something that hopefully anyone can relate to. Continue reading.

From Glenn Sumi of NOW Toronto:

Link: TIFF 2021, Day 7: CBC show Sort Of is all kinds of great
After the fallout over the way Kim’s Convenience abruptly ended, the new CBC show Sort Of is doing things right. Continue reading.

From Glenn Sumi of NOW Toronto:

Link: Bilal Baig is ready for their close-up
Bilal Baig is taking me on a mini-tour of Little India – their Little India. It’s early afternoon on a weekday, so the patios are closed and there’s none of the liveliness that comes at night when this stretch of Gerrard resembles a bustling, brightly lit urban street in India or Pakistan. Continue reading.

From Victoria Ahearn of the Canadian Press:

Link: ‘Sort Of’ is about transition in all walks of life, says star/co-creator Bilal Baig
In deciding to not only co-create but star in a comedy series about a gender-fluid millennial nanny in Toronto, Bilal Baig was nervous. Continue reading.

From Melissa of The Televixen:

Link: Bilal Baig and Fab Filippo on their trailblazing new series, Sort Of
“There was a very steep learning curve that I feel like I’m still on, but it’s amazing and rewarding.” Continue reading.

From Leora Heilbronn of Brief Take:

Link: Interview: Sort Of’s Bilal Baig, Fab Filippo and Jennifer Kawaja
Sort Of was so important to us that we made a concerted effort to participate in the press junket for the CBC, and soon to be HBO Max, series. Continue reading.

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Banff unveils lineup of high-profile Master Classes and exclusive screenings

From a media release:

The Banff World Media Festival (BANFF) is proud to announce highly anticipated Master Classes featuring talent and creatives from hit series It’s a Sin, David Makes Man, Transplant, Moominvalley and Sort Of as well as exclusive screenings for Family Law and Blindspotting. The virtual Festival will take place June 14 – July 16, 2021, via an all-new bespoke online platform that will connect the global media industry to ignite new projects and support business development.

“This year’s Master Classes and Screenings represent some of the world’s most original, impactful and exciting series,” said Jenn Kuzmyk, Executive Director of the Banff World Media Festival. “It is a privilege to host such accomplished talent and executives as they take us through the business and creative story behind the making of each project.”

It’s a Sin: A coming-of-age chronicle of four friends during the rise of the AIDS crisis from 1981 to 1991, the critically acclaimed mini-series drama It’s a Sin has been lauded by critics and audiences globally. Featuring an intimate conversation with the show’s Creator, Executive Producer and Showrunner Russell T. Davies, Director Peter Hoar and actor Nathaniel Curtis as they discuss the journey to bringing this change-making landmark show to the screen and its impact to date.
Featuring:
• Russell T. Davies, Creator
• Peter Hoar, Director
• Nathaniel Curtis, Actor

David Makes Man: The Peabody Award-winning series produced by Warner Bros. Television also received a Critics’ Choice Award nomination for Best Drama, a prestigious Gotham Award nomination, and has been named to several critics’ 2019 year-end best-of-television lists. David Makes Man premiered to overwhelming critical acclaim in August 2019. The New York Times called the show “deeply beautiful and distinctive” while The Washington Post called it “one of the most original and riveting TV shows this year.” During its first season run, the series ranked No. 2 in its time period across all cable with African-American women and reached over 4.1 million unique viewers on OWN. Season two fast-forwards and finds David in his 30s, a rising businessman facing an opportunity that will change him and his community forever; the mounting pressure forces David to choose between the instincts that helped him survive or finding a new way to truly live.
Featuring:
• Tarell Alvin McCraney, Creator
• Tina Perry, President, OWN
• Dee Harris-Lawrence, Executive Producer
• Kiel Adrian Scott, Director
• Kwame Patterson, Actor
• Akili McDowell, Actor

Transplant: An in-depth conversation with the creative team behind the hit CTV Original drama series Transplant. The first season of the critically-acclaimed series, which is the 2021 Canadian Screen Award-winner for Best Drama Series, follows a Syrian doctor who tries to build a new life for himself and his sister. A ratings hit on CTV, Transplant became the most-watched Canadian series, and on NBC in the U.S.
Featuring:
• Joseph Kay, Creator and Showrunner
• Tara Woodbury, VP of Development, Sphère Média
• Carlyn Klebuc, General Manager, Original Programming, Bell Media
• Hamza Haq, Actor
• Ahmed Meree, Cultural Consultant and Actor

Moominvalley: A deep dive journey into the magic behind the internationally celebrated and positivity-themed animated series Moominvalley, based on the stories of beloved Finnish-Swedish author Tove Jansson. Produced by Gutsy Animations from the series Creator Marika Makaroff, Executive Producer Marion Edwards, Director Jay Grace and Actor Jack Rowan (Noughts + Crosses, Peaky Blinders) who voices “Moomintroll”, as well as Jarmo Lampela, Head of Drama, at the Finnish public broadcaster YLE who was first to board the series which has been sold to more than 50 countries.
Featuring:
• Marika Makaroff, Creative Director Moominvalley / Chief Creative Officer Gutsy Animations
• Marion Edwards, Executive Producer
• Jay Grace, Director
• Jarmo Lampela, Head of Drama, YLE
• Jack Rowan, Actor

Sort Of: A conversation with the creative team behind CBC’s new dramatic comedy, Sort Of, premiering this fall. Creators and Showrunners Bilal Baig (Acha Bacha) and Fab Filippo (Save Me) and Sienna Films’ Jennifer Kawaja will take BANFF delegates behind the scenes of this big-hearted, coming-of-age story about Sabi Mehboob (Baig), a gender-fluid millennial in transition in every aspect of their life, from gender to love to sexuality to family to career.
Featuring:
• Bilal Baig, Executive Producer, Writer, Lead Performer, Co-Creator
• Fab Filippo, Executive Producer, Director, Co-Creator
• Jennifer Kawaja, Executive Producer

As previously announced, the creative team and cast from FX’s new half-hour series Reservation Dogs will also be featured in the Master Class lineup.

Exclusive screenings featured during the Festival will include the hot new comedy-drama series Blindspotting followed by a Q&A with the cast, as well as the highly-anticipated upcoming legal drama Family Law. Presented in partnership with Lionsgate Entertainment and STARZ, Blindspotting comes from co-creators and executive producers Rafael Casal and Daveed Diggs which follows Ashley (Jasmine Cephas Jones), who is enjoying a peaceful life in Oakland until her partner of 12 years and father of their son is suddenly incarcerated, leaving her to navigate a chaotic and comedic existential crisis as she is forced to move in with his family. Presented in partnership with Corus Entertainment, Family Law stars Jewel Staite (Firefly) and Victor Garber (DC’s Legends of Tomorrow) in this one-hour drama that follows lawyer and recovering alcoholic Abigail ‘Abby’ Bianchi struggling to put her career and family back together after hitting rock bottom.

In continuing with creative discussions on more hit series, BANFF’s Rockie Awards Roundtables will feature creators, executive producers and producers behind this year’s nominees including Alone, Love on the Spectrum, Filthy Rich and Homeless, The Last Ice, Noughts + Crosses, I May Destroy You, About Sex, El Presidente and more.

The full 2021 Banff World Media Festival agenda is available HERE.

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CBC greenlights Sort Of, from creators Bilal Baig and Fab Filippo

From a media release:

CBC has greenlit new original comedy SORT OF (8×30) from Sienna Films (Trickster, Cardinal). Created by Bilal Baig (Acha Bacha) and Fab Filippo (Save Me) and starring Baig, SORT OF is a big-hearted series about Sabi Mehboob (Baig), a fluid millennial who straddles various identities from sexy bartender at an LGBTQ bookstore/bar, to the youngest child in a large Pakistani family, to the de facto parent of a downtown hipster family. Sabi feels like they’re in transition in every aspect of their life, from gender to love to sexuality to family to career. The half-hour single-camera comedy begins production in Toronto today.

In addition to Baig, the cast includes Gray Powell (Hudson & Rex, Designated Survivor), Amanda Cordner (Baroness von Sketch Show, The Expanse), Ellora Patnaik (Kim’s Convenience, Schitt’s Creek), Grace Lynn Kung (Transplant, Star Trek: Discovery), Supinder Wraich (The 410, Crawford), Kaya Kanashiro, Aden Bedard, Gregory Ambrose Calderone (This Movie is Broken, Salvation) and Alanna Bale (Cardinal, Killjoys).

When Sabi’s best friend 7ven (Cordner) presents them with an opportunity to live and find themself in the “queerest place in the galaxy,” Sabi instead makes the decision to stay and care for the kids they nanny after their mom has a serious bike accident. Do they regret it? Sort of. A coming-of-age story, SORT OF exposes the labels we once poured ourselves into as no longer applicable…to anyone. A show about how each and every one of us is in transition. Sort of.

A CBC original series produced by Sienna Films, SORT OF is created by Bilal Baig and Fab Filippo, who also serve as showrunners and executive producers. The series is written by Baig, Filippo, Jenn Engels, Nelu Handa and Ian Iqbal Rashid, with Filippo and Renuka Jeyapalan (Kim’s Convenience, Workin’ Moms) directing. Sienna Films’ Jennifer Kawaja and Julia Sereny are also executive producers.

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