Showtime crosses border to Canada

Series including The Affair and Ray Donovan will have a new home in Canada after a deal was made to bring US premium cable channel Showtime north of the border.

The Affair

The Affair

Bell Media and CBS Corporation have partnered to launch Showtime in Canada for the first time, with hundreds of hours of past, present and future series to be made available in English and French across streaming service CraveTV and pay TV channel The Movie Network.

CraveTV will launch a Showtime-branded strand featuring series including The Affair, Ray Donovan, Penny Dreadful, Masters of Sex, Nurse Jackie, Brotherhood, Sleeper Cell, Weeds, and The Big C.

Later this year, a Showtime block will also debut on The Movie Network.

Bell Media lands new series

Bell Media in Canada has acquired a raft of new dramas for its channels in 2014/15 – including new monarchy drama The Royals.

The Royals (10×60′), which will air on E! in midseason, is a one-hour drama about a fictional British royal family set in modern-day London. Produced byLionsgate Television, the Royals inhabit a world of opulence and regal tradition that caters to any and every desire, but one that also comes with a price tag of duty, destiny and intense public scrutiny. It was commissioned by E! in the US.

The Royals

The Royals

Complications (10×60′), which is heading to Bravo in midseason, is about John Ellis (Jason O’Mara), a disillusioned suburban ER doctor, who finds his existence transformed when he intervenes in a drive-by shooting, saving a young boy’s life and killing one of his attackers. When he learns the boy is still marked for death, he finds himself compelled to save him at any cost and discovers that his life, and his outlook on medicine, may never be the same. It was originally commissioned by USA Network.

Proof (10×60′), picked up for midseason on Bravo, follows Dr Carolyn Tyler (Jennifer Beals) on a journey toward answering one of life’s greatest mysteries: Is there life after death? A highly trained surgeon, skeptic and believer in hard science, Dr Tyler is challenged by an eccentric and terminally ill billionaire (Matthew Modine) to prove that there is an afterlife. After exploring stories about hauntings, near-death experiences, past lives and more, Dr. Tyler slowly evolves from hardline skeptic, to doubter and ultimately, reluctant believer. The TNT series is executive produced by Kyra Sedgwick, Rob Bragin, Tom Jacobson, Jill Littman and Alex Graves.

Rush (10×60′), also heading to Bravo on July 17, is about Dr William Rush (Tom Ellis), who is not your average on-call doctor. He’s not attached to any hospital and is highly discreet no matter what the ailment, as long as the client can pay his cash-only premium. And this doctor can party with the best of them. He has no desire to change his life or how he lives it, until an old flame and his conscience begin to stir things up. It was also commissioned by USA Network.

Space sails on Last Ship

Bell Media-owned Space has exclusive Canadian rights to Michael Bay’s new drama The Last Ship.

The Last Ship

The Last Ship

Debuting on June 22, the ten-part series stars Eric Dane as the captain of a naval destroyer whose crew must confront a new reality when a pandemic kills off most of the Earth’s population.

The cast also includes Rhona Mitra, Adam Baldwin, Travis Van Winkle, Charles Parnell, Christina Elmore, Sam Spruell, and Marissa Neitling.

Based on William Brinkley’s novel, The Last Ship is produced by Platinum Dunes, with Bay, Brad Fuller, Andrew Fuller, Steven Kane, and showrunner Hank Steinberg executive producing.The series will have its premiere on Space on the same day it debuts on US cable network TNT, which commissioned the series.

Syfy, Space become Killjoys

A new space adventure drama commissioned by Space in Canada has found a US home.

Killjoys tells the story of a fun-loving, hard living trio of interplanetary bounty hunters sworn to remain impartial as they chase deadly warrants throughout the Quad, a distant system on the brink of a bloody, multi-planetary class war.

The series has been greenlit for ten episodes by Bell Media-owned Space and has now been acquired by Syfy in the US. It will debut in 2015.

Creator and showrunner Michelle Lovretta is executive producing alongside David Fortier and Ivan Schneeberg. It is produced by Temple Street Productions.

19-2 gets season two

19-2, the English language adaptation of the original Québec series, has been renewed for a second season.

19-2

19-2

Canadian network Bravo has greenlit an additional ten hourlong episodes, which are likely to air at the beginning of 2015.

The police drama, set on and off the streets of Montreal, is coproduced by Sphère Média Plus and Echo Media in association with Bell Media.

It follows the lives of two patrol officers – one who returns to the force three months after his partner was shot and another who has just transferred to the big city from his small hometown.

Jocelyn Deschênes, Carolyn Newman and Luc Châtelain executive produce. The showrunner is Bruce Smith, who also executive produces, while Jesse McKeown and Virginia Rankin are co-executive producers.

The series is distributed by Content Television.

Space invades Z Nation

Space in Canada has acquired new zombie drama Z Nation.

Space

Space

The Bell Media-owned channel will air the 13-hour series this fall, when it is also due to air in the US on commissioning broadcaster Syfy.

Z Nation, produced by The Asylum, is set three years after a mysterious zombie virus has gutted the country and follows a team tasked with transporting the only known survivor of the plague from New York to California.

Karl Schaefer is the showrunner and executive producer.

Production is due to begin this summer.

Orphan Black lands on Amazon

Amazon has become the exclusive online home of BBC America’s original drama Orphan Black.

Orphan Black

Orphan Black

Season one and all future season of the series will become available to subscribers to Amazon Prime Instant Video in the US.

Orphan Black stars Tatiana Maslany as an outsider who assumes the identity of a woman who looks just like her after witnessing her suicide – only to realise they are clones.

The cast also includes Maria Doyle Kennedy, Dylan Bruce, Jordan Gavaris, Kevin Hanchard and Skyler Wexler.

Created by John Fawcett and Graeme Manson, it is produced by Temple Street Productions in association with BBC America and Bell Media’s Space.

It is distributed by BBC Worldwide.

Season two of Orphan Black will debut on BBC America on April 19.

Content dials up 19-2

Content Television has expanded its distribution slate with the addition of 19-2.

19-2

19-2

The English-language drama was produced for Canada’s Bravo and debuted on January 29.

Set in Montréal, the series follows the lives of patrol officers Ben Chartier (Jared Keeso) and Nick Barron (Adrian Holmes). Newly partnered amidst the highly-charged environment of Montréal’s 19th precinct, the two must attempt to put their differences aside as their lives intertwine both professionally and personally.

The ten-part series is an adaptation of the original French-Canadian version, which aired on Société Radio-Canada, and is coproduced for Bell Media by Montréal’s Sphère Média Plus and Echo Media. Content Television will handle international rights (excluding Canada) across all platforms.

Bell Media unveils huge drama slate

Canada’s Bell Media, owner of CTV, has unveiled a slate of 29 drama projects in development from writers and producers from Rookie Blue, Flashpoint and Desperate Housewives.

CTV

CTV

AKA, from Thunderbird Films, Paul Mullie and Joeseph Mallozzi, is a serialised drama about a woman with the perfect life – and a dark secret that could change everything.

Apex, from Chris Roberts, is about an elite police squad that fights the growing criminal world of military-grade human bio-mods.

Cardinal Mysteries, based on the novels by Giles Blunt, is set in the quiet Canadian town of Algonquin Bay where a body is found in an abandoned mine shaft. It is developed by Blunt and Allan Magee.

Copout is a police procedural from Darius Films and Thomas Michael about two unlikely partners stationed in the evidence room of a police station.

Criminal Justice Society is about a brilliant criminology professor who works with her students to solve deadly crimes. Sienna Films is producing with Salvatore Stabile.

Deadline sees an investigative journalist employ some unorthodox methods as she reports on the criminal world around her. It comes from Omnifilm Entertainment and Suzette Couture.

In Echoes, the Earth becomes a battlefield for two warring extraterrestrial species and humanity struggles to survive. It is from Don Carmody Productions and Carl Binder.

Haunted, from Peter Mohan, is about a young woman who reluctantly takes on the role of ghost hunter after a failed experiment accidentally opens a portal to the spirit realm.

Ice sees a woman left broke after a divorce turn to diamond theft. It is produced by Incendo and Katie Ford.

Lords of Opium is described as an epic historical drama about the struggle in China for power and control of the opium trade during the late 19th Century. It comes from Darius Films and Paul Haggis.

Mighty Quinns is about a family of con artists who reunite to help a government agency solve crimes, but old habits die hard. Lark Productions and Steve Blackman are developing the show.

Modified, from Entertainment One and Jeremy Boxen, is about a detective and his partner who lead the gene squad.

Mortal Coil, produced by Pier 21 Films and Andrew Wreggitt, is about a coroner who performs autopsies and investigates the murders.

Old City Hall, based on the books by Robert Rotenberg and produced by Shaftesbury Films, is set within the halls of the criminal courts.

Salamander is an adaptation of the Belgian series about a detective who uncovers a mysterious shadow society whose members are being targeted. It comes from AdlibFilm, Mark Ellis and Stephanie Morgenstern.

Siege of Kebec is mythological history drama set in New France in the early 1600s. Prospero Pictures is behind the project, from Chris Lavis, Maciek Szcerbowski and Andrew Wreggitt.

Sex, Lies & Handwriting is a coproduction between Sea To Sky Entertainment, Lionsgate and Tandem Communications, about an artist and handwriting expert who is hired by police to solve cases. Nancy Miller and Annie Brunner are attached to the project.

Smoke & Mirrors, from Adam Barken and Emily Andras, sees an illusionist return home to Niagara Falls where he becomes a private detective.

From Thunderbird Films and Robert C Cooper, Soul Hunter is about a young woman who makes a deal with the Devil and must capture 100 escaped souls and return them to Hell to get her life back.

Sparrow, from Brian McKeown, is a thriller set in a world where deep cover agents deal with the consequences of today’s corporate decisions.

Strain is about a brother and sister who learn the truth behind some surprising lies when they inherit their mother’s science fiction writing empire. It is from Pier 21 Films, David Hewlett, Kate Hewlett and Craig Wallace.Also from Craig Wallace, The Institute sees four young recruits come face-to-face with the unexpected at The Institute of Unpopular Science.The Investigation, from Sarrazin Couture Entertainment and Suzette Couture, is about a cop who uncovers the truth behind the murders of nine Native women in a small northern town.Third Eye, about a wrongfully discharged cop, is from Whizbang Films and Anne Wheeler.Tranquility tells the story of a troubled ex-cop who is brought to the moon colony Tranquility as the new sheriff. It comes from Double Nickel Entertainment, Sonar Entertainment and Mark Verheiden.Uncommon Youth is a four-part miniseries set in Italy and the US, based on the kidnapping of J Paul Getty III, the grandson of oil tycoon J Paul Getty. It’s from Sea To Sky Entertainment and Stephen Tolkin.ICF Films and Aubrey Nealon are developing a police drama called Unravel.There are also untitled projects in the works from Anne Marie La Traverse and Bill Mustos.

Helix leads in Syfy’s New Year

Ronald D Moore’s Helix is among the new and returning series that will line up on US cable network Syfy in 2014.

The series will debut on January 10, ahead of new supernatural drama Bitten on January 13.

Being Human and Lost Girl both return on January 13.

Helix tells the story of scientists from the Centres for Disease Control who investigate a possible outbreak, only to be pulled into a life or death struggle that may hold the key to mankind’s salvation or annihilation.

The cast includes Billy Campbell, Hiroyuki Sanada, Kyra Zagorsky, Mark Ghanimé, Jordan Hayes, Meegwun Fairbrother, Catherine Lemieux and Neil Napier.

The 13-episode season is produced by Tall Ship Productions, Kaji Productions and Lynda Obst Productions in association with Sony Pictures Television. Moore, showrunner Steven Maeda and Lynda Obst are executive producers.  Creator Cameron Porsandeh is co-executive producer.

Helix

Helix

Bitten, based on the Women of the Otherworld novels by Kelley Armstrong, stars Laura Vandervoort as the only female werewold in existence.

Another 13-episode season, it also stars Greg Bryk, Greyston Holt and Paul Greene.

The series is produced by No Equal Entertainment, Hoodwink Entertainment and Entertainment One in association with Canadian network Space and Bell Media. The executive producers include JB Sugar, Patrick Banister, John Barbisan, Tecca Crosby, John Morayniss, Margaret O’Brien, and co-showrunners Daegan Fryklind and Grant Rosenberg.

Lost Girl, which returns for season four, was developed by Prodigy Pictures in association with Canada’s Shaw Media and Showcase. The executive producers are Jay Firestone and Emily Andras. Vanessa Piazza and Wendy Grean are producers.

Being Human, also back for season four, is executive produced by Michael Prupas, writer and showrunner Anna Fricke, Stefan Pleszczynski, Rob Pursey and Toby Whithouse. Irene Litinsky is series producer.

Being Human

Being Human