Tag Archives: Sydney Poitier-Heartsong

Preview: Carter kicks it up a notch in Season 2

If the first episode is any indication, Season 2 of Carter is going to be very, very good. The Canadian original, starring Jerry O’Connell as actor-turned-private investigator Harley Carter, roars back with a stellar premiere on Friday at 9 p.m. ET on CTV Drama Channel that showcases the comic talents of O’Connell and Kristian Bruun.

Created by Garry Campbell, Andy Berman takes over showrunning duties from Campbell. The result—at least from what I’ve seen in Friday’s debut, “Harley Wears a Wig”—is a show that has evolved in its second season. Episode 2, “Harley Loses a Finger,” follows at 10 p.m. ET.

Here’s the official synopsis for “Harley Wears a Wig,” written by Berman and directed by Peter Wellington:

Harley Carter’s first official case as a P.I. is a kidnapping with a surprising twist.

And here are a few tidbits and additional thoughts from me after watching a screener of the episode in advance.

Harley as a P.I. rocks
It would have been silly to try and make excuses for Harley to keep dropping into the Bishop Police Department as an actor applying his skills to solving cases. Growing the character allows the show to move forward and land great comic payoffs.

Harley + Dave = Laughs
Kristian Bruun’s Dave is Carter‘s secret weapon. When he, O’Connell and Sydney Poitier Heartsong are together on-screen, giggles are guaranteed.

Colin Mochrie guest stars
Speaking of laughs, Mochrie helps kick off Season 2 in style as Neil Jacott, a man who asks Harley to find his missing wife, played by Debra McGrath. Mochrie’s Neil is an odd duck, and Sam doesn’t take him seriously.

Lyriq Bent joins the cast
John Bourgeois is out and Lyriq Bent is in as Bishop’s new police chief. I’ve been a fan of Bent’s for years—most recently on Mary Kills People and Shoot the Messenger—and his straight man role as Joyce Boyle simply kills.

Carter says goodbye
A sweet storyline involving Dot (Brenda Kamino) and an episode closing credit allows the series to bid farewell to Koji and Denis Akiyama, who passed away last year.

Carter airs Fridays at 9 p.m. on CTV Drama Channel.

Images courtesy of Bell Media.

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CTV partners with Sony Pictures Television and WGN America for Season 2 of Carter

From a media release:

CTV, in partnership with Sony Pictures Television and WGN America announced today the renewal of the comedic procedural series CARTER for a second season, starring Jerry O’Connell (Billions), Sydney Poitier Heartsong (Chicago P.D.) and Kristian Bruun (Orphan Black).

Andy Berman (Psych, Rosewood) joins CARTER as showrunner and executive producer for its sophomore season, which returns to North Bay, ON to commence production this spring. Series creator Garry Campbell (Kids in The Hall, MADtv) returns as an executive producer and writer on the series.

CARTER revolves around Harley Carter (O’Connell), the star of a hit detective TV show, who decides he needs a break from Hollywood and returns to his northern hometown where he quickly discovers that his years of playing a fictional detective come in handy when he finds himself immersed in real-life mysteries. In Season 2, Carter plants roots as a celebrity PI and doubles down on his fame in a world where life continues to imitate TV. But Carter will discover that the toughest cases to solve are personal ones when he finds himself embroiled in a love triangle with his best friend and her new boss, where the stakes are winner takes all.

The series was commissioned by Sony Pictures Television (SPT) for AXN in Spain, Latin America, Brazil, Japan, Central Europe and Russia; and by CTV in Canada. The series is distributed by SPT worldwide, excluding Canada.

In Canada, CARTER made CTV’s sister network, Bravo, the #1 specialty channel in its timeslot. In the U.S., CARTER aired on WGN America as its most-watched original series in 2018. CARTER has also been a boon to AXN around the world. For example, it has been a success across Europe, reaching 6.5 million total viewers in 2018.

CARTER is produced by Amaze Film + Television, executive produced by the company’s Teza Lawrence and Michael Souther (Call Me Fitz, Saint Ralph) as well as Campbell, Berman and series star O’Connell.

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Carter: How Kristian Bruun’s unemployment beard landed him the role of Dave

We’re loving Carter.

The light tone, humour and chemistry between the three main characters—actor Harley Carter (Jerry O’Connell), cop Sam Shaw (Sydney Poitier-Heartsong) and coffee truck owner Dave Leigh (Kristian Bruun)—is a big part of that. The trio is the heart and soul of the mystery series, airing Tuesdays at 8 p.m. ET on Bravo, and we couldn’t imagine anyone else in those roles.

Ironically, if it hadn’t been for his Murdoch Mysteries character, Constable “Slugger” Jackson being killed off, Bruun likely never would have scored Dave. We spoke to Bruun, who will also be seen in the excellent space web series Deep Six in the coming months, about landing the role.

What was it like working on Carter?
Kristian Bruun: It’s funny how this world works because I wouldn’t have gotten that job if I was back on Murdoch Mysteries, I think. And, like Peter Mitchell said back then about not being worried about me, he was kind of right. When I didn’t get to come back to Murdoch for Season 11, I was like, ‘Well, I guess I don’t have to be clean-shaven anymore.’ So I grew this hipster beard to fit in in my neighbourhood in L.A. I called it my unemployment beard. [Laughs.] I was looking a little more rugged and then an audition came along for this role, playing a dude from up north. I thought the beard could work and I booked the role.

Tell me about Dave.
He’s a very different character that I’m very lucky to play. We had a blast shooting it. Jerry O’Connell, Sydney Poitier and I are up north solving crimes. I kind of describe it as Magnum, P.I. meets Murder, She Wrote. It’s a small town, there are too many murders and we’re running around solving capers and getting into too much trouble. It’s a really fun role. We had a blast shooting it. It was like summer vacation. We were there from July to October in North Bay, Ont., a beautiful place to be shooting and every week friends of mine were coming up to film guest-starring roles on this. It was like, ‘Hey, come up and hang out with us for a week on this crazy TV show.’ It has a lot of humour, a lot of heart.

Carter airs Tuesdays at 8 p.m. ET on Bravo.

Image courtesy of Bell Media. 

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Jerry O’Connell solves crimes in Bravo’s lighthearted Carter

If North Bay, Ont.’s tourism board is looking for a spokesperson, they should sign up Jerry O’Connell. The veteran actor of such series as The Defenders and Sliders speaks glowingly—and extensively—while discussing his next project, the Canadian original crime series Carter, debuting Tuesday at 8 p.m. ET on Bravo.

“It’s a truly Canadian show,” O’Connell says on the line from London, England, where he’s shopping Carter worldwide for Sony Pictures Television. “I’ve worked on a lot of shows in Canada that have pretended to be San Francisco, painted out the Canadian flag and handled American money, but here they actually frame the Canadian flag and we actually use loonies and twonies. I feel like I’m a real ambassador for North Bay at this point.”

The project, created by Garry Campbell (The Kids in the Hall, Todd and the Book of Pure Evil) was filmed in the northern Ontario city—as was fellow Bell Media series Cardinal—and focuses on Harley Carter (O’Connell), an affable Canadian lad who made it big as a detective on the hottest cop show on American television. After a much-publicized meltdown, Harley has returned to his hometown of Bishop, Ont., where he reconnects with childhood friends Sam Shaw (Sydney Poitier-Heartsong) and Dave Leigh (Kristian Bruun). Sam, a veteran cop, quickly finds Harley inserting himself into her investigations while coffee truck owner Dave serves as Harley’s unofficial driver and wingman in some outrageous schemes. Unlike the dark, brooding of Cardinal, Carter is much more lighthearted, especially when Harley and Dave are bumbling their way through a plan to get information on a suspect. And, thanks for Harley’s years of playing a cop on television, he actually helps with investigations, much to Sam’s chagrin.

“I lived in L.A. for about 10 years and had a lot of Canadian friends there and I watched what it did to people,” Campbell says of the genesis of Carter. “You have enough people telling you, ‘You’re a star and everything should revolve around you,’ and you start to believe it. It changes people. I was fascinated with the idea of this Canadian boy who always had this idealized version of what Hollywood was in his head. The procedural element of the show is just gravy. I wanted to deal with a guy who gets away from his roots.”

Harley is far from his roots when viewers tune in to the debut instalment. Harley is basking in being recognized on the beach in Bishop when Sam appears and an awkward reunion follows. But when Harley’s housekeeper-turned guardian of 30 years is accused of murder (check out a photo gallery of Carter‘s cast, including Wynonna Earp‘s Varun Saranga) Harley demands he be included in the investigation. Yes, Harley is somewhat cocky, but what Campbell and his writing team of Larry Bambrick, Jenn Engels and Wil Zmak have created is someone immensely likeable. O’Connell, so long a co-star on series where he’s not the main man, steps into that role and owns it. The chemistry between he, Poiter-Heartsong and Bruun is palpable, especially in one key scene where the characters are relaxing in Muskoka chairs, sipping beer and recalling the old days.

“That was the moment, of all the moments when we kind of said, ‘Oh, we’re doing it. This thing is going to work,'” Campbell recalls. “We cast well. Those guys are amazing. And they’re just decent human beings and it shines through.”

Carter airs Tuesdays at 8 p.m. ET on Bravo.

Images courtesy of Bell Media.

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Photo gallery: Carter, Season 1

Where has the time gone? It seems just like yesterday when Bell Media announced Carter was in production up in North Bay, Ont. Now we’re just days away from the debut—Tuesday, May 15, at 8 p.m. ET on Bravo—and we’re sharing some gorgeous gallery images of the cast below.

Carter stars Jerry O’Connell as Harley Carter, the star of the hottest detective show in primetime television. After a much-publicized meltdown, Harley returns to the small town of Bishop to reconnect with his roots. Harley quickly reunites with his childhood friends Sam Shaw (Sydney Poitier-Heartsong) and Dave Leigh (Kristian Bruun) to solve crimes. Along for the 10-episode adventure are Varun Saranga as Vijay Gill, Brenda Kamino as Dot Yashuda, John Bourgeois as Chief Angus Pershing, Joanne Boland as Nicole Walker, Matt Barum as Wes Holm and Sherry Miller as Mayor Grace Hamilton.

Carter was created and written by Garry Campbell, developed with writer John Tinker and produced by Amaze Film + Television. Scott Smith directs. Executive producers are Amaze Film + Television’s Teza Lawrence and Michael Souther, and producer is Victoria Hirst.

Carter debuts Tuesday, May 15, at 8 p.m. ET on Bravo.

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