The 2023 Canadian Screen Award winners in the Comedic & Dramatic Arts categories were presented Friday evening in Toronto, the final awards show of Canadian Screen Week. CBC and BET+ period drama The Porter took home a record 12 awards, the most for any television show in Canadian Screen Awards history, including Best Drama Series; Best Direction, Drama Series; Best Writing, Drama Series; and Best Guest Performance, Drama Series for Alfre Woodward. CBC’s Sort Of took home seven awards, including Best Comedy Series. Winners in the Cinematic Arts categories saw Clement Virgo’s Brother also set a record, claiming 12 awards, the most for any film in awards’ history. Winners in the Digital & Immersive categories included ET Canada Live, which picked up a leading three awards, including Best Host, Web Program or Series recognition for Cheryl Hickey, Roz Weston, Sangita Patel, Carlos Bustamante, Keshia Chante, Morgan Hoffman, and Best Live Production, Social Media. Its ET Canada Pride celebration also captured Best Web Program or Series, Non-Fiction.
LISTEN: Tracy Moore, the award-winning host of Citytv’s Cityline, has been honoured by the Canadian Academy of Cinema & Television with The Changemaker Award, recognizing a Canadian media personality using their voice or platform to call out systemic racism and discrimination and promote values of equity and inclusion. Moore joins us on Broadcast Dialogue – The Podcast to talk about her journey to becoming a changemaker, the evolving climate for inclusivity in Canadian media, and her own work as a host to bring more authenticity to television. Listen on your favourite podcast app or here:
New York Festivals TV & Film Awards competition has announced the 2023 Storytellers Gala award winners. Crave’s We’re All Gonna Die (Even Jay Baruchel) won Gold for Best NonFiction Series, while Sportsnet won Silver for the Toronto Raptors 2022/23 Season Launch in the Original Music: Promotion/Open & IDs category.
Youth Media Alliance (YMA) has announced it will award its Outstanding Achievement Award to Marilyn Kynaston, and its Emerging Talent Award to Joan Digba. They’ll be honored at a gala at the CBC Glenn Gould Studio in Toronto on May 31, celebrating the best Canadian youth productions across television and digital.
The Guild of Music Supervisors, Canada (GMSC) and Canadian Music Week (CMW) have once again partnered to present the 2023 Canadian Sync Awards, celebrating music supervisor excellence. The Sync Awards will take place on Thursday, June 8 at The Westin Harbour Castle in Toronto. Awards submissions are now open until April 24.
Sphere is bringing its English language children’s factual, scripted and animation units under one Kids and Family banner, to be headed by Marlo Miazga, Sphere Media’s President, Unscripted and Documentaries. Miazga will also continue in her role overseeing all other non-scripted output from Sphere’s Toronto office. The move follows the announcement that Sphere Animation president Jacques Bilodeau will be retiring later this year. Miazga will be supported in her new role by Andrea Griffith, who has been promoted from her current role as Director of English Unscripted Content to Kids and Family’s Vice-President of Development and Content. Ghislain Cyr, founder of Sardine Productions, which was acquired by Sphere in 2022, will become Creative Director. Judith Beauchemin, Sphere’s Animation’s Vice-President of Operations, will also transition to the new unit, where she will serve as Vice-President of Production and Post.
Crave and NRK have announced the primary cast of their hotly-anticipated, Original series So Long, Marianne, which tells the legendary love story of Leonard Cohen, and his muse Marianne Ihlen. Leading the cast are Alex Wolff (The Line, Hereditary, Jumanji) as Leonard, with Thea Sofie Loch Næss (The Last Kingdom, Delete Me, A Storm For Christmas) playing Marianne. Joining them are Anna Torv (The Newsreader, The Last of Us, Mindhunter) as Charmian Clift and Noah Taylor (Preacher, Peaky Blinders, Game of Thrones) as George Johnston. Principal photography began March 24, shooting in multiple locations including the Greek island of Hydra, Oslo in Norway, and Montréal, set during the 1960s.
Adult Swim Canada’s first original animated series, Psi Cops, premieres June 4 on Adult Swim and available to stream live and on demand with STACKTV. Debuting immediately after the Season 6 premiere of The Eric Andre Show, the animated comedy series, commissioned by Corus Entertainment and produced by Wind Sun Sky Entertainment and Oddfellows Labs, follows coworker friends forever (CFFs) Kydd (Chris Nielsen) and Felixx (Bart Batchelor) who are top detectives at the paranormal agency Psi Cops where they solve mysteries and supernatural crimes using their overly competent incompetence. To kick off the premiere of Psi Cops, series creators, stars and executive producers Bart Batchelor and Chris Nielsen will attend Calgary Expo on April 27 for an exclusive screening and Q&A panel.
Corus Entertainment’s Showcase and W Network have announced their summer lineups featuring the premieres of Pete Davidson-led series Bupkis, subversive comedy Everyone Else Burns, and family drama Dreamland. Returning shows include crime-fighting comedy Code 404, supernatural mystery series Nancy Drew, and the highly-anticipated Season 7 premiere of Outlander.
Children Ruin Everything is set to return for a third season. Production on 10, half-hour episodes of the CTV Original series from New Metric Media is underway in Toronto and Hamilton. Meaghan Rath and Aaron Abrams return, alongside Logan Nicholson, Mikayla SwamiNathan, Ennis Esmer, Nazneen Contractor, Dmitry Chepovetsky, Veena Sood, Lisa Codrington, and Darius Rota. The first two seasons are currently available for streaming on CTV.ca and the CTV app, as well as Crave, and The Roku Channel in the U.S.
Accessible Media Inc. (AMI) is marking spring with new and returning original series and documentaries on AMI-tv. New shows include That Sex Show, which debuted April 19, hosted by sex educator Rachele Manett, a deep dive into the intersection of sex and disability. Also making its debut is Disrupt on May 2, showcasing music, short films, poetry, animation, spoken word, comedy, dance, puppetry and other mediums, with a disability-first punk rock attitude. Produced by Rachel Bower Productions, Disrupt also features members of the disability community working in key production roles like production manager, writer, assistant editor, assistant director, composer, assistant production designer and camera and sound assistants.
Rogue River Films has announced the highly-anticipated second season of Yukon Harvest, which debuts on APTN in English on May 9 and in Northern Tutchone, starting June 5. The 13-episode documentary series chronicles the adventures of Indigenous guides and hunters as they journey into the remote wilds to connect with the land, share in culture, find personal healing, and give back to the community. Season 2 continues the adventures of the hunters and guides from the first season, now following them back into their own communities across the country. Filming locations include Kamloops and Fort St. John in BC, Whitehorse, Mayo, Dawson City, Stewart Crossing and the Yukon wilds in the Yukon, the Northwest Territories wilds and Winnipeg and Bloodvein in Manitoba. The series will also be released under the title Dän K’eht’e in Northern Tutchone, a language spoken in the Yukon communities of Mayo, Pelly Crossing, Stewart Crossing, Carmacks, and Beaver Creek.
Cinespace Studios has announced the launch of the CineCares Workforce Training program in Toronto to recruit, train and offer paid work placements on productions filming at Cinespace Studios Toronto to bring new and qualified crew members to the film and television sector in the region. IATSE Local 873, the largest union of film technicians in Ontario, will be the program’s training partner. Trainees will receive hands-on training with Set Decorators, Props, Grip, Lighting, and General Labour for up to 12 weeks and upon starting their paid placements, gain permit status with IATSE. The Indigenous Screen Office (ISO), POV, and BIPOC TV & FILM have come on board as the program’s first community partners.
Plex says it has tripled its total viewership in Canada across both users and minutes watched on the global streaming platform, year-over-year. Plex currently offers 246 FAST channels in Canada, nearly doubling its channel lineup in the market since last year, with BBC Studios’ Top Gear and PBS Antiques Roadshow among its top performing channels. Additionally, it has over 30,000 advertising-based video on-demand (AVOD) titles available to stream. Plex is also introducing its first owned and operated FAST channel in Canada, Plex Picks, a 24/7 entertainment channel featuring movies and series spanning across different genres, including crime, horror, mystery, sci-fi and thriller. Following the launch of the channel in the U.S., Plex Picks will be available to Canadian users starting May 10.
Media Technology Monitor’s latest report examines paid TV subscriptions, cord cutting, and the influence and overlap of SVOD services and paid TV service providers. Key findings from the Change The Channel! report include: Paid TV Services have been mostly stable over the last five years. Currently 71% of English speakers subscribe to a paid TV service, rising to 74% among Francophones. While cable remains the most popular paid TV service type (32% among English speakers, 39% Francophones), fiber optic TV saw more year-over-year growth than ever before this year (21% in 2021 to 28% in 2022). Satellite TV continues to slip, now reaching 11% of Anglophone households and just 7% of Francophone homes. After surpassing paid TV services in 2019, SVOD subscriptions are at an all time high among English speakers at 83% and 73% of Francophones. Only 19% of English speakers subscribe exclusively to SVOD services, however 59% have a subscription to SVOD services as well as a paid TV service. Only 17% of Francophones subscribe exclusively to SVOD services, while 51% subscribe to both SVOD and a pay-TV service.
CBC is offering free virtual event, Seeds of Change, to provide independent producers with new information on how to implement sustainable practices on set and incorporate environmental awareness into their storytelling. Intended to answer producer questions and address any misconceptions surrounding the topic of sustainability in the Canadian screen industry, the event will take place Wednesday, April 26 with free registration now open. Hosted by Sally Catto, General Manager of Entertainment, Factual and Sports, CBC, the event will be presented with closed captioning and ASL, as well as simultaneous French translation, and made available for those who are unable to attend live.