Creative BC says early insights project that 2022 production spending by film and television projects in B.C. will be over the estimated $3.6B mark. Final figures are anticipated to be potentially slightly above 2021 numbers for original film and television production activity. Creative BC says the province’s reputation for attracting internationally acclaimed productions remains strong, with foreign productions choosing to film in the province in 2022 including Emmy-nominated Showtime series Yellowjackets, AppleTV+’s Pachinko and Disney+ feature film Peter Pan & Wendy. Domestic productions included Global TV’s Family Law, and acclaimed feature films Bones of Crows and Riceboy Sleeps.
The National Association of Voice Actors (NAVA) has released guidelines for what work is restricted during SAG-AFTRA’s strike governing the TV/Theatrical contract, which has entered its third week. While voice work on feature length animated or feature films, trailers, ADR and looping are prohibited, NAVA says voice actors can continue to work in almost every other genre including commercials, video games, dubbing, audiobooks, TV/basic cable animation, promos and podcasts. ACTRA members are standing in solidarity with SAG-AFTRA.
CBC and Counterfeit Pictures have announced casting for new original comedy series One More Time (13×30) from stand-up comedian D.J. Demers (The Tonight Show, Conan) and showrunner Jessie Gabe (Workin’ Moms, Mr. D). Premiering on CBC Gem and CBC in Winter 2024, One More Time is a workplace comedy starring Demers as the hard-of-hearing manager of a second-hand sporting goods store, and the team of “enthusiastic” employees he leads. Joining him on screen are actress and comedian Geri Hall (Astrid and Lilly Save the World, This Hour Has 22 Minutes); Daniel Beirne (Ginny & Georgia, Workin’ Moms, Fargo); Elise Bauman (Workin’ Moms, Carmilla); newcomer Seran Sathiyaseelan; and Dayton Sinkia (Letterkenny, The Strain). Rounding out the cast in recurring roles are Nadine Bhabha (Letterkenny, This Hour Has 22 Minutes), Chris Robinson (The Amazing Gayl Pile, The Boys), Maddy Foley (The Boys, Step Sisters) and Marito Lopez (Gary and His Demons).
ABC, Screen Australia and CBC have announced that filming has commenced on the second season of acclaimed history-mystery series, Stuff The British Stole. Hosted by journalist Marc Fennell (Mastermind, The School That Tried To End Racism, The Feed), the eight-part new season will offer an in-depth exploration of eight new remarkable treasures acquired through the years of the British Empire. Season 2 will air on ABC TV, ABC iview, CBC and CBC Gem in 2024.
Raven Banner Entertainment and Vancouver prodco Rogue Panda Pictures are adapting Escaping Denver, the podcast from Corus Entertainment’s Curiouscast network for the small screen. The fictional podcast, which is entering its third season, explores conspiracy theories surrounding the Denver International Airport.
Paramount+ is now the Canadian streaming home of the Star Trek catalogue featuring over 800 episodes and 12 feature films. The library will continue to build throughout the month with Star Trek: The Next Generation available Aug. 8 and Deep Space Nine on Aug. 15. They join Star Trek: Discovery, Star Trek: Strange New Worlds and Star Trek: Picard which are already streaming on the service. In Canada, Paramount+ will also be the streaming home of new original series Star Trek: Starfleet Academy and movie event Star Trek: Section 31, starring Michelle Yeoh.
WildBrain is significantly expanding its offering on Amazon’s SVOD services through a trio of new deals with Prime Video for Canada, Australia and New Zealand; Prime Video in Germany; and Amazon Kids+ in the U.S. Collectively the deals total over 850 episodes, plus movies and specials from WildBrain’s extensive library of original and partner content. As previously announced, Prime Video in Canada, Australia and New Zealand launched nearly 500 episodes from WildBrain’s Degrassi library on July 18. The agreement brings the most Degrassi content ever available on one service to the platform, including all 14 seasons of Degrassi: The Next Generation.
Sportsnet will offer multi-platform coverage of the 2023 National Bank Open presented by Rogers, Aug. 7-13. Tennis fans can tune in on Sportsnet, Sportsnet ONE, and Sportsnet 360, and via livestream on SN NOW. Live coverage begins Monday, Aug. 7 at 11 a.m. ET / 8 a.m. PT as the stars of the Women’s Tennis Association take centre stage on the Montreal hardcourt and their ATP (Association of Tennis Professionals) counterparts battle it out in Toronto. Daytime host Danielle Michaud is joined by former national tennis coach Robert Bettauer and Canadian doubles player Sharon Fichman as they break down morning and afternoon action from across the tournament live from Montreal. In Primetime, host Bray Fay anchors the evening coverage with former Canadian pros Jesse Levine and Genie Bouchard.
Air Canada is further expanding its in-flight entertainment experience with the addition of Apple TV+ original programming, as of Aug. 1, bringing hit series like Ted Lasso, Bad Sisters, The Morning Show and Severance to travellers. The partnership with Apple follows the airline’s recently-announced collaboration with Mattel, offering short form content like Barbie Dreamtopia, Thomas & Friends, and Polly Pocket for young travellers. Read more here.
Studio Ghibli’s long-awaited feature film, The Boy and the Heron, from Academy Award–winning director Hayao Miyazaki, will be the Opening Night Gala Presentation for the 48th Toronto International Film Festival on Sept. 7, at Roy Thomson Hall. While several of Studio Ghibli’s films have screened at TIFF, this is the first time a Japanese film or an animated film has opened TIFF. The festival has also unveiled the 10 World Premieres that comprise the Platform programme for 2023, along with jury members: Academy Award–winning filmmaker Barry Jenkins, Cannes Jury Prize–winning director, writer, and actor Nadine Labaki, and 2022 Platform Prize–winner Anthony Shim. The 10 films in the programme are eligible for the $20,000 Platform Prize given to the best film. The sole Canadian feature in the programme is Christian Sparkes’ The King Tide.
Atlantic International Film Festival (AIFF) has unveiled a new logo reviving its legacy brand and accompanying initials AIFF. The festival will unify all programs under one cohesive brand, including: AIFF Partners, AIFF Kids, AIFF Outdoor and AIFF Online. The move marks a shift away from the Halifax-based festival’s FIN branding, adopted in 2016 under former Executive Director Wayne Carter.“The FIN era served its purpose in bringing all the festival’s programs under one recognizable umbrella, and now it is time to carry that momentum forward into the future under a familiar well-loved name and exciting new branding,” said Martha Cooley, Executive Director of AIFF, in an announcement. “Following suit with most other Canadian international film festival naming conventions, the primary goal of the Atlantic International Film Festival name and brand is to clearly and proudly say who we are, what we do and where we are from.” This year’s festival will take place Sept. 14-21.
OYA Black Arts Coalition (OBAC) and the Canadian Film Centre (CFC), in partnership with Dark Slope, are calling on founders of Black-owned content creation companies to apply for Cohort 3 of OBAC Scale Up Immersive, an accelerator for aspiring Black creatives and production companies interested in developing spatial content, including virtual and augmented reality story experiences. The deadline to apply is Aug. 31. Participants will benefit from intensive programming led by industry experts, hands-on mentorship, networking opportunities, and a group rapid prototyping component that will allow cohort teams to build a working prototype with resources valued at up to $50,000.
The Pacific Screenwriting Program is now accepting applications for the 2024 Scripted Series Lab, which runs January to April 2024 in Vancouver. Six up-and-coming writers will hone their craft, strengthen their collaboration and presentation skills, and gain a deeper understanding of B.C.’s television industry and how to market themselves within it. Applications close Aug. 31.