June 2009

Canadians were spellbound by MERLIN last night, as 1.1 million viewers travelled to Camelot for the two-hour premiere of the series on CTV, winning the night as the most-watched program on television. The fantasy-filled premiere conjured up Sunday night fans of all ages, placing first with key demos A18-49 and A25-54.  With a Reach of nearly 3 million viewers, MERLIN attracted more and more viewers throughout the broadcast, peaking with 1.53 million viewers during its last half hour.

Next week, MERLIN continues on his mythical journey as CTV presents another night of family-friendly viewing. In the two-hour episode, “Mask of Nimeuh/The Poisoned Chalice” (Sunday, June 28 at 8 p.m. ET), a deadly plague spreads through Camelot. When it seems that sorcery can be the only possible explanation, Merlin (Colin Morgan) and Gaius (Richard Wilson) race to find a cure; meanwhile Gwen (Angel Coulby) is arrested and sentenced to death for practicing witchcraft. Meanwhile, with her sights set firmly on Merlin (Colin Morgan), Nimeuh (Michelle Ryan, BIONIC WOMAN) tricks him into drinking from a poisoned chalice, and he falls dangerously ill. Arthur (Bradley James) ventures deep into the Forest of Balor to find the antidote, but little does he know that he’s walking into a trap.

CTV, Canada’s Olympic Network, is also Canada’s largest private broadcaster. Featuring a wide range of quality news, sports, information, and entertainment programming, CTV is Canada’s most-watched television network. CTV Inc. also owns radio stations across the country and owns or has interests in leading national specialty channels, featuring news, sports, factual, arts, entertainment, music, youth and fashion programming. CTV Inc. is owned by CTVglobemedia Inc., Canada’s premier multi-media company, which also owns Canada’s national newspaper, The Globe and Mail. CTV is the official broadcaster of the Vancouver 2010 Olympic Winter Games and London 2012 Games of the Olympiad. More information about CTV may be found on the company website at www.ctv.ca.

Pyro performances, white-hot celebs, and crazy-loyal fans collided at the 2009 MUCHMUSIC VIDEO AWARDS pushing decibel levels beyond the threshold at MuchMusic HQ. Rock royalty Nickelback, lit up the MMVAs stage and took home top honours scoring three awards (Best Video, Best Post-Production, MuchLOUD Best Rock Video). The Midway State took home two awards (the coveted UR FAVE: Favourite New Artist and VideoFACT Best Independent Video) and international chart-topper Lady Gaga, who left fans awestruck with her umm…spark-spitting brassiere, seized the highly-coveted International Video of the Year award.  Mega heartthorb co-hosts Nick, Joe, and Kevin Jonas caused heart palipitations at the legendary corner of Queen and John with not one, but two performances.  And Twi-hards lost it for Taylor Lautner when he introduced Nickelback for the final performance of the night. The Vancouver rockers set the Toronto skyline ablaze with an incredible performance capped off by explosions of fire in sky.

“Canada is very special to me. Canada gave me my first number one record; my first boyfriend; and now my first award,” said Lady Gaga.

“You can really tell it’s all about the fans,” said co-host Nick Jonas.

“This is amazing…. It’s like the biggest block party. Wish they did something like this in the States,” said Kim Kardashian, 2009 MMVAs Presenter.

But this year it was the fans that spoke louder than ever before casting close to  470,000 total votes to crown Simple Plan (Favourite Video), The Midway State (Favourite New Artist), and the Jonas Brothers (Favourite International Video) as the winners of the 2009 MMVAs UR FAVE Awards (formerly People’s Choice Awards).

“It’s was an absolutely incredible night, with the best in the business doing their thing for the MuchMusic fans all night long,” said Brad Schwartz, Senior Vice-President and General Manager, The Much MTV Group, CTV Inc. “Whether it was hugging a Jo Bros in person, being glued to the TV for three rock solid hours, or directing their own version of the MMVAs at muchmusic.com, the best part for us was being able to bring our fans closer to their favorite stars than they’ve ever been.”

Encore presentations of the 2009 MMVAs can be viewed online at muchmusic.com right now. Viewers can pick their favourite performances or see the whole broadcast in its entirety again. The 2009 MMVAs rebroadcasts on CTV on July 11 at midnight ET.  MuchMusic also rebroadcasts the show throughout the week. International broadcasts can be seen on TV Guide Network in the U.S., in 20 countries around the world on MTVNHD and on XYZnetworks in Australia.

And the winners are…

UR FAVE: Favourite Video
Simple Plan – “Save You”

UR FAVE: Favourite New Artist
The Midway State – “Never Again”

UR FAVE: Favourite International Video
Jonas Brothers – “Burnin’ Up”

Best Video
Nickelback – “Gotta Be Somebody”

Best International Video – Artist
Lady Gaga – “Poker Face”

Best International Video – Group
Black Eyed Peas – “Boom Boom Pow”

Pop Video of the Year
Danny Fernandes – “Private Dancer”

Best International Video – Canadian
Billy Talent – “Rusted from the Rain”

MuchLOUD Best Rock Video
Nickelback – “Gotta Be Somebody”

MuchVibe HipHop Video
Classified – “Anybody Listening”

Best Director
Marianas Trench – “Cross My Heart”

Best Post-Production
Nickelback – “Gotta Be Somebody”

Best Cinematography
Bedouin Soundclash – “Until We Burn Into the Sun (The Kids Just Want A Love Song)”

VideoFACT Best Independent Video
The Midway State – “Never Again”

MuchMusic.com Most Watched Video
Girlicious – “Like Me”

Its not always about décor, entertaining, fashion and beauty.  Sometimes it’s about a little fitness, a little community and a whole lot of sweat – but as always CityLine does it with style! For the first time, CityLine host Tracy Moore and her team ‘CityLine’s Breast Foot Forward’ are lacing up their running shoes and taking to the streets as part of the Weekend to End Breast Cancer September 12 and 13.

Starting Monday, June 22 viewers, friends and families can start supporting Tracy and her team by visiting CityLine.ca and clicking on CityLine’s Breast Foot Forward team photo to make a donation to this worthy cause.

On July 8 CityLine will be re-broadcasting the Weekend to End Breast Cancer special.  This moving episode featured courageous stories of women and their families affected by the disease and inspired Tracy to participate in this year’s walk.

“The day I walked into the studio to tape our Weekend to End Breast Cancer show I got shivers,” commented Tracy Moore.  “Everyone in the audience had either survived breast cancer or were supporters. The positive energy, the hope, the palpable feeling of everyone working towards something bigger than themselves…I just knew by the end of our taping I had to walk in the Weekend to End Breast Cancer. Our floor director and so many of our guest experts agreed!”

CityLine’s Breast Foot Forward – CityLine Guest Experts Ramsin Khachi, Karen Sealy, Jason Parsons, Jeanette Ewen, Videographer Patrick Reynolds, Breakfast Television’s Frank Ferragine and CityLine’s Floor Director JC Chessell – will join thousands of other courageous and committed women and men September 12-13 in a two day, 60 kilometre walk through Toronto to raise funds for breast cancer. 

This is the seventh annual Weekend to End Breast Cancer walk in Toronto. This multi-day event is a chance to discover what it is to be a hero in the fight against breast cancer. Thousands of Walkers will cover approximately 30 kilometers each day, travelling at their own pace. Walkers will be supported by hundreds of Volunteers and Crew Members who will provide meals, water and snack stops, gear transport, portable restrooms, safety on the streets, comprehensive medical services and an overnight campsite complete with tents and hot showers.

For more information on this initiative and CityLine programming, visit www.CityLine.ca.

About CityLine
Host, Tracy Moore, engages and entertains viewers with her energy, charismatic personality and flare for style.  CityLine’s unique live format and daily themed approach informs viewers with the help of trusted guest experts on topics such as food & entertaining, home décor & design, health & family and fashion & beauty. 

About The Weekend to End Breast Cancer
The Weekend to End Breast Cancer is a 2-day, 60km walk or a 1-day, 30km walk.  Since the inception of the Weekend to End Breast Cancer, $190 million has been raised across Canada, with all monies raised staying in the community and supporting local hospitals and cancer centres. Funds raised traditionally benefited breast cancer research treatment and care.  In 2009, this has expanded to include all gynaecological cancers, including among others, cervical, endometrial and ovarian. The 2009 Weekend to End Breast Cancer events will take place in Vancouver, Edmonton, Calgary, Toronto, Ottawa and Montreal. To register or to find an event near you, visit www.endcancer.ca

Monday, June 22 9 p.m. ET/6 p.m. PT

A volcanologist learns of an impending eruption at an Italian town and tries to warn the skeptic citizens. Stars Chris William Martin and Antonella Elia.

TRIPLE SENSATION returns to CBC Television with Season 2, airing Monday nights at 8 p.m., starting June 22. The Gemini Award-winning six-part performing arts series seeks out Canada’s most talented young actor-singer-dancers who compete for the dream-come-true $150,000 Middlefield Scholarship prize.

Broadcasting in tandem on CBC’s digital channel bold is TRIPLE SENSATION: INSPIRATION & PERFORMANCE, a 12-part complementary series that will be broadcast Tuesday and Wednesday nights at 7 p.m. ET, starting June 23.  For information on how to order bold, viewers can call their local television service provider or visit boldtv.ca.

After last night’s Much Music Video Awards aired live from Toronto, an entirely different type of issue is making news that has nothing to do with the evening’s hosts, performances or category winners. According to reports, celebrity gossip blogger Perez Hilton was assaulted by a manager for Black Eyed Peas member Will.i.am.

After an after party for the MMVA’s, Perez Hilton logged onto his Twitter account claiming that he had been assaulted by Will.i.am following a series of disputes earlier in the night when Fergie asked the blogger to step making fun of their band and its members on his website. Apparently, the Black Eyed Peas and their entourage ran into Perez at a nightclub hosting an MMVA after party, and in response to the heated discussions, manager for Will.i.am punched Perez in the face multiple times. In response to this altercation, police were apparently called and the manager was arrested. Since then Will.i.am and Perez Hilton have both posted video responses on their websites addressing what happened and telling their side of the story.

While the Much Music Video Awards did seem to draw a decent guest list this year, it’s a little sad that the Canadian event will finally make news South of the border, and it’s because of a celebrity fight.

Sunday, June 21 10:45 p.m. ET/PT

Andy tries to lift his spirits after a number of bad reviews, but instead learns a humiliating side of fame when he meets David Bowie at a club.

Sunday, June 21 10 p.m. ET/PT

Gareth is determined to pick up the new girl, Rachel, but she is more interested in Tim. After a practice fire drill, David Brent completes the annual staff appraisals and tries to boost his popularity with a lunchtime trip to the pub.

World premiere on documentary on June 21 at 8 p.m. ET/9 p.m. PT

This film explores the bizarre and hilarious nature of people’s number one fear: public speaking. It examines the history and psychology of this fear while following Luke King, the film’s director, as he takes a public speaking class and attends Ontario’s largest provincial speech competition for kids. Just Say It! features candid interviews with Canadian celebrities including the CBC’s Peter Mansbridge, George Chuvalo and the cast of the Royal Canadian Air Farce as they attempt to help Luke shed some light on Canadians’ deepest fear.

Once upon a time in a mythical land far, far away, a sorcerer discovers that magic is his destiny. But, where magic is punishable by certain death, can young Merlin keep his powers a secret and fulfill his true potential? A fun, summertime getaway into a world where anything is possible, MERLIN airs Sundays at 8 p.m. ET on CTV in simulcast with NBC, kicking off with a two-hour premiere on June 21 at 8 p.m. ET (visit ctv.ca to confirm local broadcast times). Set in the mythical city of Camelot, the fantasy drama series follows the clashes of the legendary young wizard (Colin Morgan, DR. WHO) and a teenaged Prince Arthur (Bradley James, DIS/CONNECTED) as they struggle to understand their destinies.

During its run in the U.K. last fall, MERLIN was the most-watched drama of the fall season on BBC One, attracting a series average 6.3 million viewers (26.8% share). The series also had a reach of 34 million, or over half of the U.K. population.* U.K. media were unanimous in their acclaim: “Excellent family entertainment,” said The Times; “A well-judged blend of fantasy, humour and excitement,” said The Daily Mail; “Our 21st century gets the version it deserves,” said The Mail on Sunday; and Sunday Express said, “Don’t miss MERLIN, which strides into the schedules like a knight in shining armour.” Premiering last March in Australia, the Sydney Sun Herald said “…this take is good, swashbuckling fun.”

“While the tales of Merlin and King Arthur are classic legends, this new series offers a fresh perspective on the iconic sorcerer in a way that will resonate with today’s audiences,” said Susanne Boyce, CTV’s President, Creative, Content and Channels, CTV Inc. “MERLIN is escapist, summertime viewing for people of all ages.”

In MERLIN, Camelot is a fantastical realm of legendary beasts and mysterious people, in which magic has been banned by the ruthless tyrant, Uther Pendragon (Anthony Head, THE INVISIBLES, BUFFY THE VAMPIRE SLAYER). When Merlin (Morgan),arrives in the kingdom, he quickly makes enemies which include the heir to Uther’s crown, the headstrong Prince Arthur (James). But guided by Uther’s wise physician Gaius (Richard Wilson, A Passage To India), Merlin is soon using his talents not just to survive, but also to unlock Camelot’s mystical secrets. As he does so, Merlin discovers that his destiny and that of the kingdom’s young leader-in-waiting, Arthur, are inextricably linked.

The young, up-and-coming leads are joined by a talented cast including legendary actor John Hurt (Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull) as the voice of the Great Dragon, a wise creature who can help Merlin fulfill his destiny; Santiago Cabrera (HEROES) as Lancelot, a great fighter with dreams of becoming a knight serving Camelot; Katie McGrath (THE TUDORS) as Morgana, the orphaned ward of King Uther; Angel Coulby (Magicians) as Guinevere, a servant of noble heart and friend of Morgana; and Michelle Ryan (BIONIC WOMAN) as Nimueh, an evil sorceress determined to destroy King Uther Pendragon and Camelot.

In the two-hour series premiere, “The Dragon’s Call/Valiant” (Sun., June 21 at 8 p.m. ET), Merlin is at the cusp of adulthood, heading to Camelot where he hopes to find adventure and a use for his hidden talent:  magic. However, at the mythic city, he finds all is not quite as he’d dreamed. Then, Camelot hosts its annual sword tournament and knights from throughout the realm have come to compete for its coveted title. Amongst those hoping to win the crown is Knight Valiant.

With stunning CGI effects by The Mill – Academy Award®-winners for their work on Gladiator – coupled with Shine Television’s Emmy® Award-winning production team, MERLIN comes to life on the screen like never before. The series was shot in Wales, France and England.

MERLIN is a Shine production for the BBC. FremantleMedia Enterprises has invested in the series alongside Shine Television and BBC One, and is the exclusive international rights holders for distribution, licensing, and home entertainment (excluding the U.K.).