The heartwarming story of a Christmas-time race to save starving horses trapped in a remote mountain area touched a huge television audience Sunday night, as more than 

1.4 million Canadians tuned in for A HEARTLAND CHRISTMAS. Based on CBC-TV’s top rated dramatic series, the two-hour television holiday movie scored a resounding ratings success.

“This was an early Christmas present for Heartland fans, and it was a great way to introduce the series to a new audience,” said Kirstine Stewart, Interim Executive Vice-President, CBC English Services.  “It looks like Canada has a new holiday classic.”  

Audiences will have another opportunity to watch A HEARTLAND CHRISTMAS when it airs again on Christmas Day (Dec 25th) at 9:00 p.m. (9:30 NT).

Written by Heather Conkie and directed by Dean Bennett, A HEARTLAND CHRISTMAS stars Amber Marshall as Amy, Michelle Morgan as her sister Lou, Shaun Johnston as Jack – Amy’s and Lou’s grandfather – and Chris Potter as Tim. Also in the cast are series regulars Graham Wardle as Ty Borden, Jessica Amlee as Mallory, Kerry James as Caleb Odell and Cindy Busby as Ashley Stanton, as well as guest stars Nicholas Campbell (DA VINCI’S INQUEST, THE REPUBLIC OF DOYLE) and Hélène Joy (MURDOCH MYSTERIES, DURHAM COUNTY).

A HEARTLAND CHRISTMAS is produced by Dynamo Films of Toronto and SEVEN24 Films of Calgary. The executive producers are Michael Weinberg, Tom Cox (BROKEBACK MOUNTAIN) and Jordy Randall (TOM STONE). The series is produced by Tina Grewal (JEFF LTD.) with Heather Conkie (DARK ORACLE) serving as executive producer and writer.

Kirstine Stewart, interim executive vice-president, CBC English Services, today announced the network’s lineup of festive holiday programming. Kicking off Sunday, Nov. 28 with FROSTY THE SNOWMAN at 5 p.m. (5:30 NT), the festivities continue through December with a series of special television events.

The stars of the CBC’s regular season will be celebrating with Canadians, with special holiday episodes of BEING ERICA, airing Dec. 15 at 9 p.m. (9:30 NT), A Heartland CHRISTMAS, Dec.12 at 8 p.m. (8:30 NT), LITTLE MOSQUE ON THE PRAIRIE ‘A HOLIDAY SPECIAL,’ Dec. 6 at 9 p.m. (9:30 NT) and Dragons’ Den, Dec. 8 at 8 p.m. (8:30 NT) – and a festive feast from BEST RECIPES EVER, Dec. 24 at 3 p.m. (3:30 NT).

And of course, the festivities continue right through to 2011, with a New Year’s Eve line-up that includes specials from JUST FOR LAUGHS, 7 p.m. (7:30 NT), AIR FARCE, 8 p.m. (8:30 NT), THE RON JAMES SHOW, 9 p.m. (9:30 NT), and George Stroumboulopoulos Tonight.

Other highlights from the CBC 2010 holiday season include:

SEASON OF SONG: THE CANADIAN TENORS AND FRIENDS airs Dec.13 at 9 p.m. (9:30 NT). An hour-long special featuring performances of holiday favourites by The Canadian Tenors alongside some of Canada’s greatest musical legends and the world’s hottest young stars.

STEVEN AND CHRIS once again host the holiday party that no one wants to miss, with a full week of holiday programming. Get one-of-a-kind seasonal tips on Fashion, Décor, Food and Health, beginning Dec. 13 at 2 p.m. (2:30 NT).

George Stroumboulopoulos Tonight: A Holiday Special, airs Dec. 24 at 11:05 p.m. (11:35 NT), and celebrates with new takes on traditional holiday tunes including performances by Chrissie Hynde, Broken Social Scene, Johnny Reid and OK GO, along with a celebrity reading of The Grinch Who Stole Christmas starring Russell Peters, Sir Richard Branson and more.

Holiday celebrations take to the ice with three special television events. First, catch up with your favourite hockey players-turned figure skaters on BATTLE OF THE BLADES: AFTER THE ICE MELTS, airing Dec. 5 at 8 p.m. (8:30 NT). STARS ON ICE, Dec. 7 at 9 p.m. (9:30 NT), features Canada’s top figure skaters, including performances by Kurt Browning, Jeffrey Buttle, Jamie Sale and David Pelletier, Shawn Sawyer and celebrations of Canada’s Olympians: Tessa Virtue and Scott Moir and Joannie Rochette. HOLIDAY FESTIVAL ON ICE, Dec. 14 at 9 p.m. (9:30 NT), is a holiday-themed skating show – this year, featuring a country theme, with musical performances by George Canyon and the duo One More Girl. Skaters include Kurt Browning, Steven Cousins, Jeffrey Buttle, Shawn Sawyer, Joannie Rochette, Jamie Sale & David Pelletier.

A selection of seasonal, family-friendly movies run throughout the month of December, including, HAPPY FEET, Nov. 28 at 8 p.m. (8:30 NT), DR. SEUSS HOW THE GRINCH STOLE CHRISTMAS, Dec. 13 at 8 p.m. (8:30 NT) and THE POLAR EXPRESS, Dec. 22 at 8 p.m. (8:30 NT).

CBC and Bell today announced wider distribution of CBC’s unique services to audiences with the addition of CBC Edmonton and CBC Regina to the Bell Satellite TV service. The two channels (Edmonton as CBC-E channel 230 and Regina as CBC-R channel 247) will be available on Bell Satellite TV starting today.

“As Canada’s public broadcaster, we continue to strive to ensure Canadians have access to our content whenever and wherever they may be,” says Kirstine Stewart, interim executive vice president for CBC English Services. “Along with important local programming such as CBC News, we will now have increased flexibility to offer regionally focused content, such as hockey, for our viewers.”

“We’re delighted to be working with Bell on this initiative,” says Scott Moore, CBC’s general manager of the Revenue Group.  “This is the first time CBC Edmonton and CBC Regina have been available on Bell TV.  Important agreements like this help us to extend the reach of our channels within Alberta and Saskatchewan and to Canadians throughout the country.”

“With the addition of CBC Edmonton and CBC Regina, Bell has further enhanced its broad range of news and other content from local television stations across Canada,” said Heather Tulk, Senior Vice-President, Residential Products for Bell. “Along with the most HD channels, the best HD PVR and leading-edge services like Remote PVR, Bell continues to deliver an unparalleled TV experience to Canadians.”

From the controversial worlds of the paparazzi and Scientology, to the mystery of some of the world’s largest natural disasters, highlights on CBC News Network’s THE PASSIONATE EYE in the latter half of September include:

Mystery of the Super Flood (Wednesday, Sept. 22 at 10 p.m. ET/PT). As we witness the environmental and human devastation in Pakistan, Mystery of the Super Flood reveals how a colossal flood created one of the Earth’s strangest geological riddles thousands of years ago. Using CGI and dramatizations, it illustrates how this force of water, thousands of times greater than the Boxing Day Tsunami, carved out a bizarre landscape in Eastern Washington.

Smash His Camera (Sunday, Sept. 26 at 10 p.m. ET/PT). Winner Best Director, Sundance Film Festival (2010), it profiles notorious paparazzo Ron Galella, infamous for being sued by Jacqueline Kennedy Onassis (his favourite subject), and having his jaw broken by Marlon Brando. Besides profiling the original paparazzo, Smash His Camera opens a Pandora’s Box of issues including right to privacy, freedom of the press and the ever-growing vortex of celebrity worship. Both Ron Galella and director Leon Gast (Academy Award-winner, When We Were Kings) are available for interviews.

Scientology: The Ex-Files (Monday, Sept. 27 at 10 p.m. ET/PT). Ex-Scientologists in the U.S. and Australia offer a rare look at this secretive religion, accusing it of financial greed and extreme emotional cruelty. They explain why they joined, how they worked, and the heartache they’ve experienced since leaving after being cut-off from seeing their families. It also investigates what happens when some members launch a controversial lawsuit.

Two million pairs of free 3D glasses to watch CBC Television’s QUEEN ELIZABETH IN 3D documentary special are now available at more than 3,100 Canada Post outlets across the country.

The CBC 3D glasses, which will enhance the experience of watching the historic milestone broadcast, are available on a first-come, first-served basis. Visit the Canada Post website to find out which outlets are distributing the CBC 3D glasses.
QUEEN ELIZABETH IN 3D airs Wednesy, Sept. 22 at 10 p.m. on CBC Television, and Monday, Sept. 20 and Saturday, Sept. 25 at 10 p.m. ET/PT on CBC News Network.
QUEEN ELIZABETH IN 3D is the first 3D television program to be Canadian-shot, produced and transmitted nationally on this scale. The documentary includes 3D footage of the Queen’s most recent trip to Canada, including her reviewing the Canadian naval fleet in Halifax, and attending Canada Day celebrations in Ottawa and the Queen’s Plate in Toronto, as well as archival colour 3D footage from 1953 and new material shot at Buckingham Palace.
Viewers can watch the broadcast without glasses or in 3D if they use 3D glasses that have amber and blue lenses. Old-style red and blue 3D glasses and clear polarized 3D glasses will not work with this production.
Special equipment is not needed to watch QUEEN ELIZABETH IN 3D, although the experience will be enhanced by watching the documentary on an HD television set up for widescreen or 16:9 presentations. The picture on standard-definition television sets will be letterboxed, meaning a horizontal bar will appear on top and below the picture.
Viewers are advised that it can take a few seconds for their eyes to adjust to the stereo imagery of a 3D production. To enjoy the 3D effect to its fullest, viewers should sit directly in front of the television, dim or turn off the lights and make sure there are no intrusive reflections on the screen. They should also make sure their 3D glasses are clean and, if applicable, worn over prescription glasses. For more information on QUEEN ELIZABETH IN 3D, visit www.cbc.ca/QE3D

CBC News is rolling out an extensive series of reports and insights from across Canada to help parents as they prepare to send their children back to class.

BACK TO SCHOOL STUDY GUIDE (cbcnews.ca/backtoschool) is a week-long series of stories beginning Monday, Sept. 6 on all CBC News platforms—The National, CBC News Network, CBC Radio, CBCNews.ca and local news programs across the country.

This can be one of the most daunting, stressful times of the entire year for parents. But CBC News has the answers they need. From putting together a healthy lunch to finding eco-friendly school supplies to understanding curriculum changes to the latest digital learning aids, this series of stories gives parents everything they need to know to get through the sometimes confusing, sometimes exhausting process of getting their kids ready to go back to school.




THE NATIONAL – 10 p.m. (10:30 NT) on CBC-TV, 9 and 11 p.m. ET/PT on CBC News Network

Ian Hanomansing presents the “lunch box breakdown.” On Monday, Sept. 6, he’ll examine the pressures faced by parents as they try to pack nutritious lunches that kids will want to eat. Then Tuesday, Sept. 7, the focus shifts to food forensics when The National reveals the truth about what’s really inside many pre-packaged lunch foods. Plus, Reg Sherren sits down for lunch at an Alberta school that is making healthy food popular with students.

On Wednesday, Sept. 8, CBC News investigates why new technology in schools is ringing some alarm bells. WiFi Internet service is now transmitted within many Canadian schools. But with its arrival, many kids have complained about health issues and headaches. So have WiFi waves been tested for their safety? Ioanna Roumeliotis investigates this invisible concern. 

And touted as the greenest school in Canada, Windsor is set to open a new $17-million elementary school—Dr. David Suzuki Public School—where everyone’s trying to get into the green.



As children head back to school, parents have lots of questions. Watch CBC News Network daily for the answers.

CBC News’ Colleen Jones will have a look at how fashion this year takes back-to-school back to the styles of the ’70s.  Plus, look for live reports as kids in much of the country say good-bye to summer and hello to their teachers.

This morning, CBC Television earned significant industry recognition for its quality popular programming with a haul of 151 nominations from the Academy of Canadian Cinema and Television’s 25th Annual Gemini Awards.

“CBC Television is delighted with how many nominations the Academy has granted our talented stars, writers, journalists and other professionals – and we congratulate them all,” said Kirstine Stewart, Interim Executive Vice-President, English Services and General Manager of CBC Television “Above all else, this showing confirms that CBC Television is the place to watch the best Canadian shows and the biggest Canadian stars.”


Among the nominations received by CBC Television:


Little Mosque on the Prairie

Rick Mercer Report



Republic of Doyle

The Tudors



Battle of the Blades



Dragons’ Den



The Hour with George Stroumboulopoulos




o  Shaun Majumder, 22 Minutes

o  Peter Keleghan, Erin Agostino, Carl Alacchi, Angela Asher, Ellen David, Stacey Farber, Al Goulem, Tiio Horn, Jesse Rath, Michael Seater, Arielle Shiri, 18 To Life



Rick Mercer, Rick Mercer Report



Allan Hawco, Republic of Doyle

Michael Riley, Being Erica



Lynda Boyd, Republic of Doyle



Kurt Browning, Battle Of The Blades



George Stroumboulopoulos, The Hour with George Stroumboulopoulos



Ian Hanomansing, CBC News Vancouver

Peter Mansbridge, CBC News: The National

Diana Swain, CBC News: Toronto at 6:00

CBC today announced that, following a formal competitive bidding process, Veritas Communications has been named its agency of record for publicity and promotion. 

“Veritas brings a publicity track record defined by strong creativity and innovation; a breadth of experience with large organizations and major campaigns and, through their affiliates, extensive experience working with and within the broadcasting and Canadian media/entertainment industry,” says Bridget Hoffer, executive director of communications, brand and promotion. “We look forward to a productive, creative and innovative partnership in the coming years.” 

“Veritas is honoured and excited to be working with this iconic Canadian brand that touches every person in every community across our country,” says Beverley Hammond, president and CEO of Veritas. “We will bring creativity, energy and passion to the task of amplifying the success of CBC’s incredible properties and personalities from coast to coast.” 

Veritas takes over from Media Profile, CBC’s publicity and promotions agency for the past five years. A transition plan is in effect and stakeholders are in the process of being updated on their new contact information. Publicity and promotional activities, including those associated with the FIFA World Cup, will continue as usual, CBC says. 

“Media Profile has been a great partner and we would like to thank them for the hard work, dedication and creativity they have displayed throughout our journey together,” Hoffer says.

Starting March 1, take one small step each day towards a happier, healthier life

Making sweeping changes to our lives and our lifestyles is hard—but making small choices can really add up. We know that one small choice each day can lead to big results over time, so Steven and Chris have teamed up with some of Canada’s best and brightest to launch an exciting nation wide initiative, beginning March 1: The BETTER CHOICE CHALLENGE.

The BETTER CHOICE CHALLENGE is about engaging Canadians to make one small choice everyday aimed at improving their overall well-being. Each day, on Steven and Chris, viewers will be issued a challenge that offers one small step towards a happier, healthier life and supported with information, resources and an ability to register their progress at www.cbc.ca/stevenandchris. Each challenge completed and registered online earns an entry in the weekly and grand prize draws. The challenges will come from the five key areas of life: health, fitness, nutrition, finance and relationships. Whether it’s drinking eight glasses of water a day, taking the stairs instead of the elevator or skipping the food court in favour of packing a lunch…small choices equal big results.

Each topic area is lead by a BETTER CHOICE CHALLENGE Ambassador who is a regular member of the Steven and Chris family. On air and online, the Ambassadors will share their knowledge, expertise, tips and tricks to making better choices and will issue the daily BETTER CHOICE CHALLENGE. 

FITNESS: Kelly Murumets (President and CEO of ParticipACTION). 
FINANCE: Arlene Dickinson (CEO Venture Communications, Dragon, CBC Dragons’ Den)
HEALTH: Eileen De Villa (Associate Medical Officer of Health, Peel Region)
RELATIONSHIPS: Hina Khan (Psychotherapist)
NUTRITION: Peggy Kotsopoulos (Nutritionist)

Together with the help of their ambassadors, Steven and Chris will work to prove that small choices can add up to big gains for overall health and wellness and a happier life.

Joining the BETTER CHOICE CHALLENGE is as easy as completing a challenge and registering it at www.cbc.ca/stevenandchris. The site will also feature a gallery for uploading and sharing photos and stories, as well as blogs from Community Ambassadors, quizzes, tools and more! 

STEVEN AND CHRIS airs daily, at 2 p.m., on CBC Television.

CBC Television today announced that Tom Hastings has been appointed head of drama for the network, effective immediately. Hastings replaces Sally Catto, who was recently made executive director of arts and entertainment.

“Tom has a keen understanding of the value of thoughtful, engaging dramatic programming to our audiences and our network,” said Catto. “His knowledge and expertise in managing the creative development and production of some of this country’s most successful dramas ideally suit him to this new role.”

Hastings joined the CBC drama department in 2007 as executive in charge of production. With over 12 years of successful television and documentary production experience behind him, including six years as production executive at Alliance Atlantis and manager of research at National Geographic Channel Canada, he is a seasoned content executive with extensive relationships in Canada’s independent production and literary communities and a proven track record managing Canadian and international productions.

Previously, Hastings worked as an award-winning producer and a writer in the Canadian independent production community, and has written documentaries for National Geographic Channels International, Discovery Channel and History Television. He also holds a doctorate degree, having obtained his Ph.D. in English Literature, and is a specialist in Canadian and Commonwealth literatures with numerous publications in those fields, including a book-length study of Canadian fiction of the First World War.

CBC/Radio-Canada is Canada’s national public broadcaster and one of its largest cultural institutions. With 28 services offered on Radio, Television, the Internet, satellite radio, digital audio, as well as through its record and music distribution service and wireless WAP and SMS messaging services, CBC/Radio-Canada is available how, where, and when Canadians want it.