Force Four Entertainment announced today that it is in production on a new 26 x 30 minute HGTV Canada series, Urban Suburban, and that Sean De Vries has been promoted to Head of Factual Entertainment, in response to the company’s rapidly expanding development and production slates.
The announcements come on the heels of the company’s inclusion on the Real Screen Global 100 list, and its busiest year of production ever, including the 11 x 1 hour series Village on a Diet for CBC, the second season of the Gemini award-winning The Cupcake Girls for W Network (which also airs on WE in the U.S.), the second season of Murder She Solved: True Crime for OWN Canada, and the one hour CBC Special, Corrie Crazy: Canada Loves Coronation Street.
Each episode of Urban Suburban features one couple trying to choose between living in the suburbs or near the city, as they are toured through six open houses by brother/sister real estate team, urban specialist Sarah Daniels and suburban specialist Philip DuMoulin.
The project was developed by De Vries, who is also a producer on the series and said of his new role, “Force Four Entertainment’s success comes from creating compelling, entertaining programs and producing them with a great deal of integrity. I look forward to this expanded role of creatively directing concepts from inception through production.”
De Vries joined Force Four as full time Director of Development in 2008, and the factual development and production slate has grown rapidly ever since. A former journalist for the CBC and BBC, he brings more than ten years of television production experience to his new position. De Vries works closely with the company’s creative head, Executive Producer John Ritchie, who will continue heading scripted programming.
Working with De Vries is Development Producer Nicole Lawson, who has been with the company for many years, and Development Coordinator Tara-Lee Novak. The company has a busy slate of scripted and factual projects in development for a wide range of broadcasters including CBC, OWN Canada, W Network, TVTropolis, Food Network, and HGTV.
Vancouver-based Force Four Entertainment, one of Canada’s most successful and respected television production companies. Since beginning operations in 1983, Force Four has produced more than 300 hours of primetime broadcast programming. The company’s highly successful television programs include lifestyle, documentary, and scripted programming that is sold and aired around the world including the Gemini Award-winning W Network (27 x 30’) series, The Cupcake Girls, and the CBC (11 x 60’) series, Village On A Diet. Force Four has been awarded the prestigious Peabody Award, 11 Gemini Awards and over 25 Gemini nominations, and is owned by President Rob Bromley, Executive Producer John Ritchie, and Director of Business Affairs Gillian Lowrey.
(From a press release)