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May 12, 2020 12:55 pm  #1

The COVID Effect: Why Canadian Series May Benefit On U.S. TV

With no new production in sight for the foreseeable future, the major U.S. TV networks are scrambling to try and fill next fall's program hungry television schedule. So some of them are turning their gaze northward. The CW has confirmed it's acquired the CBC series "The Coroner," which stars Serinda Swan, who investigates suspicious deaths in Toronto. It's probably the only way Toronto will ever be seen as itself in a TV series south of the border. (Could CTV's "Transplant" be next?)

Another popular source for new shows will be England, which will also be supplying a few shows never seen on American shores.

It's all part of a desperate need to feed the beast at a time when there are almost no new shows being made and no word on when production might resume. Fox was first out of the gate with a post-pandemic schedule designed to be disease proof, and while many of the shows don't look very appealing overall, at least they won't be reruns. 

The shutdown may give an opportunity for older Canadian shows to get a shot at an audience in the U.S., something that happened during the last writers' strike down south. But there is a difference this time - back then, there weren't so many cable stations and there were no streaming services that have already gobbled up rights to a lot of the Great White North's TV shows. 

Maybe CBS will be forced to take some of their All Access shows and put them back on the network as first runs, as it did with the inaugural season of "The Good Fight" last summer. It would not only be a stop gap measure with quality dramas, but it could be used to promote its own streaming service. 

Either way, for TV viewers, it's a going to a long hot summer - and a very long fall. But it could also be a big boon for Canadian producers, writers and actors, perhaps one of the few benefits from the COVID-19 disaster.


May 13, 2020 8:00 am  #2

Re: The COVID Effect: Why Canadian Series May Benefit On U.S. TV

For the sports starved viewer, may I suggest "The Match: Champions For Charity"  This is a charity golf match with Tiger Woods/Peyton Manning against Phil Mickelson/Tom Brady which will take place Sunday May 24th at 2pm at the Medalist Golf Club in Hobe Sound, Fla. [100 miles north of Miami] All four participants have committed a combined 10M to a variety of charities. The event is scheduled to be simulcast on TNT, TBS, TRUTV and HLN. While the first three channels are unavailable in Canada, HLN can be found on ch 543 for Rogers customers.                                  MORE POTENTIAL GOOD NEWS FOR NFL FANS: The league has announced that play can begin on any weekend. Missed games will be added to the back end of the schedule. Playoff games would occur in the deepest part of winter. Super Bowl in March or April?? Works for me.


May 14, 2020 3:28 pm  #3

Re: The COVID Effect: Why Canadian Series May Benefit On U.S. TV

RadioActive wrote:

Could CTV's "Transplant" be next?

It's been picked up by NBC. Time to see if eOne can sell Nurses to anyone major. I'm surprised no one's taken the linear rights to Cardinal. It's been Hulu-only.


May 14, 2020 3:55 pm  #4

Re: The COVID Effect: Why Canadian Series May Benefit On U.S. TV

Good for CTV!  Hopefully Transplant will be popular in the US on NBC.  I agree Nurses is another show that could easily be plucked by one of the US networks.  Cardinal has been on  BBC4 in the UK for the past 3 seasons.  I am assuming they will be running the new season 4 too. 


May 24, 2020 10:22 am  #5

Re: The COVID Effect: Why Canadian Series May Benefit On U.S. TV

It's not often you see Canadian TV spotlighted in what is essentially a U.S. online site, but with the pandemic, a lot has changed. TVLine's lead story this weekend was about a number of Canuck shows the American networks may want to consider as television production remains on hold. 

Most of them are pretty familiar, but I have to admit, I've never heard of "Departure" or "New Eden."

We're not used to getting very much attention from down south, which may be why a fair number of Canadians have commented on the story at the bottom of the article. 

9 Hidden Canadian TV Gems (In Case U.S. Networks Have More Slots to Fill!)

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