Archive for May 2012
Well we all knew it was coming. CTV has acquired Anthony Edwards’ new show, Zero Hour. I am a little bit surprised at CTV getting some shows that they knew they couldn’t simulcast since that is their big thing. It will be nice to get two chances to see Jordana Spiro’s new show but moving Criminal Minds forward a day so as to accommodate The X Factor seems strange since it wasn’t that great last year. As usual the strip syndication of The Big Bang Theory continues at 7.30pm and why not since it often is in the weekly top 30 even though they aren’t new episodes
I find it strangely comforting that The Bold And The Beautiful is still there. It is the last of the soaps on CTV as the rest of the afternoon is self-help talk shows and Ellen.
This is the final season of Flashpoint. The show that theoretically is set to take its place, Motive, just instantly reminded me of The Evidence when i read the summary. I don’t see that being any sort of legacy show.
Swift on the heels of announcing the start date for XIII in the US the cable channel ReelzChannel announced today the acquisition of the Canadian historical series Bomb Girls. And of course per American arrogance Reelz is claiming it is an original series of theirs. Much like they also did with The Kennedys which was also made by Muse for and with Shaw here in Canada.
Originally billed as a 6 part mini-series it was just so damn fucking popular that Bomb Girls got a 12 episode renewal and dropped the ‘mini-series’ label a day before the 6th episode was broadcast.
“Bomb Girls is rich with historical significance, stemming from the efforts of Canadian women during the Second World War, and we are proud to spotlight the groundbreaking bravery of these unsung heroes through this new Global original,” said Barbara Williams, Senior Vice-President, Content, Shaw Media. “With its fresh-faced cast, seasoned production team, intriguing storylines and unflappable characters, this six-part series is a dynamic addition to our midseason slate.”
Set in the 1940s, Bomb Girls tells the remarkable stories of the women who risked their lives in a munitions factory in Toronto building bombs for the Allied forces fighting on the European front in World War II. The series delves into the lives of these exceptional women from all walks of life – peers, friends and rivals – who find themselves thrust into new worlds and changed profoundly as they are liberated from their home and social restrictions.
The series was created by Maureen Jennings, who is best known as the author of the Murdoch Mysteries novels on which the tv show of the same name is based, and Debra Drennan, a makeup artist on Murdoch Mysteries whose aunt was one of the ‘bomb girls’ and served as inspiration for and consultant on the show. The series was developed for television by Michael MacLennan (Flashpoint, Queer as Folk) and Adrienne Mitchell (Durham County, Bliss).
Bomb Girls was broadcast on Global in January and February 2012. The series premiere had 1.408 million viewers in Canada for it’s initial showing, bettering most of season 4 of CTV’s Flashpoint and far exceeding the numbers for The Kennedys on History Television from spring 2011. Bomb Girls is currently repeating on Canadian cable channel Showcase. The US start date on Reelz has not yet been announced.
Also coming to Reelz is the Canadian-British mini-series World Without End, the sequel to the hugely popular mini-series The Pillars of the Earth. Both mini-series are based on novels by Ken Follett.
The French-Canadian series about the American secret agent that was a hit in France and a failure in Canada has it’s American debut after much delay. XIII is a series about a man known only by the Roman numeral he was assigned. XIII (Stuart Townsend) is a skilled and lethal secret agent who escapes from an Eastern European Rendition Camp with a surgically altered face and an identity handed to him by a mysterious stranger. Recruited to a secret organization committed to bringing down the United States Government, XIII has no memory of his past, how he was trained or why. Hunted by a dark anti-government organisation, he quickly realises that the closer he gets to uncovering the riddle, the more complex and deadly the mission becomes. While living through an ever-evolving government conspiracy, XIII’s quest is to discover his true identity at any cost.
The series is based on Jean Van Hamme’s adrenaline-fueled graphic novels, which have sold more than 13 million copies worldwide since the first volume was published over 25 years ago. The preceding mini-series from 2008 starred Stephen Dorff as XIII, hence the bit about the surgically altered appearance. A few other characters wer re-cast for the show. While not required to understand it is helpful to have seen the min-series first. It is available on DVD and BD in both the full 3 hours and an edit that brings it down to more of a theatrical feature length. Experience has proven that the cover art will not necessarily be accurate when stating which version is contained on the enclosed disc. The “Triple Feature – Action” BD is one such case, claiming to have the 3 hour version but actually containing the 128 minute edited version.
The mini-series has one logo in the video that is also used for the French DVD and BD releases and another used for the American DVD release. The first season has a logo that is used in both the video and by Canadian and French broadcasters. It is supposed to be crisp and definitive. The American broadcaster has taken that logo, removed the shattering effect, squished the characters to the point of slightly overlapping, added a gradient, and added a soft shadowing to the edges.
If the subtle-to-some change of logo wasn’t enough then how about the renaming of the episodes? The pilot is being called both “Episode 101″ and “Episode One”. The second episode is titled “Green Falls” but odds are Reelz will be calling it “Episode Two”. Quite a few British shows simply have titles like that. The actual episode titles for Being Human were published some years after the show started. But stripping away episode titles in favour of chronological numbering names seems backward.
And to top it all off, despite being more than a year after the French broadcast on France’s Canal+ and the English broadcast on Canada’s MysteryTV (SD) and Showcase (SD & HD) we have Reelz claiming it is an original series of theirs. Series? Yes. Original to their channel? O seriously, come on! NBC broadcast the mini-series in the US; Canal+ and Shaw’s predecessor were the broadcasters of the mini-series in their respective countries and continued with the show. And it was a made for them in the first place. Apparently the word “original” means something entirely different in the US from the rest of the world.
From the Reelz press release:
XIII was developed and produced by Jay Firestone’s Prodigy Pictures and Luc Besson’s French production company EuropaCorp Television (La Femme Nikita).
That does read like EuropaCorp made La Femme Nikita doesn’t it? Well Jay Firestone did make the show before he started Prodigy Pictures but EuropaCorp has never had a single thing to so with LFN before that press release.
While not impressed by the plethora of tiny errors and changes made by Reelz they don’t affect the actual show. Reelz for some reason feels the need to promote the show as the product of mashing the Jason Bourne series with that of the tv show 24. The Jason Bourne novels were written about the same time as the XIII graphic novels so it’s not like one copies from the other. Both involve American secret government agents seeking to learn who they really are whilst exposing international conspiracy and corruption. Neither are of the pace seen in 24.
XIII stars Stuart Townsend, Aisha Tyler, Stephen McHattie, Ted Atherton, Virginie Ledoyen, Greg Bryk, and Caterina Murino. Showrunner Gil Grant wrote the season 1 premiere which was directed by John Stead & Duane Clark. Production is under-way on the second season with filming scheduled to be completed by 18 July.
If you are in the US you can see XIII on Reelz beginning 29 June. If you are in Canada you can buy the first season on iTunes any time you feel the urge to; it was shown on Showcase beginning in late April 2011.
The uncivilised business of building a civilisation is looking for a five score rough men.
Hell On Wheels, the 1860s vengeance in the wild west show that is filmed just outside Calgary, has an additional casting call for extras for the second season. The casting for for Tuesday is for about 100 men as extras for upcoming episodes. If you missed the extras casting in March this is another chance to have some fun, get dirty, and later see yourself on tv.
The qualifications are pretty simple: white, slim. no modern hair cuts, a scruffy look, moustaches and beards preferred. Basically, you need to look like a guy building the railroad. There are also some extras roles for Native and African men. Native men are required to have long hair while African men are required to have facial hair. At this time there is no casting call for women.
The extras casting call will be on Tuesday 19 May 2012 at the Hell On Wheels production office, 5929 6 Street NE from noon to 8 pm.
Filming of season two began on 24 April and wraps on 22 August 2012.
Hell On Wheels can be seen Sundays on AMC in Canada and the USA.
BONES stays on Mondays. No telling what order they will put the skipped episodes in but of the 17 from season 7. FOX skipped episodes 13, 14, 15, and 17. Yes, the season was not made to end on that cliff-hanger nor was it meant to have a rather obvious huge jump in the storyline but in all their wisdom the folk at FOX cut up the season to have a shocking end to what they would broadcast this month.
I want to like that Jordana Spiro, whom we all loved in My Boys, is back on tv but the show just seems so odd – a doctor indebted to the mob. If you love the karaoke shows as much as i do FOX recommends you watch ABC or CBS on Wednesdays and Thursdays. Pairing glee with the results shows on Thursdays actually makes sense. If you like crime dramas then The Following might be just the latest twist that is different enough to not feel like a repeat of everything else.