The Rig

Alberta’s Booming Oil Industry Takes the Spotlight When The Rig: Oil Sands Premieres December 26 on OLN

Climb into the middle of an amazing crew of oil workers when The Rig: Oil Sands premieres Wed., Dec. 26 at 9 p.m. ET/11 p.m. PT on OLN. The second season reunites us with 31-year-old Donny MacPhee, the tough-minded, straight-shooting rig manager from season one. After months at home, stranded by an industry-wide slowdown, MacPhee is chomping at the bit. He leaps at a job offer from emerging oil company Bronco Energy, which has just inked a groundbreaking new partnership with the Bigstone Cree First Nation in Wabasca, Alberta. MacPhee’s task? Build a new rig, assemble a new crew, get the untested rig into the field and drill a series of wells – in five short months – in Wabasca’s intensely demanding environment.

Follow MacPhee and the crew of Bronco #1 on their five-month mission, and watch them as they deal with the unexpected setbacks a rig crew faces performing the challenging horizontal drilling technique required in the oil sands. Witness the raw interpersonal dynamics of a crew living in close quarters, balancing friendship with personal ambition and working under intense pressure in a tough, isolated environment.

Get an insider’s look at the Bronco Energy management team in their Calgary head office as they face pressure to meet the expectations of investors and deliver on their promise to the Bigstone Cree Nation. Their unique partnership gives Bronco access to approximately 200 square kilometres of oil-rich Bigstone land. In return, Bigstone Cree Nation will receive an interest in the operation. Both parties are approaching the five-month project period with a strong focus on the community’s cultural, social, environmental and economic concerns. With a looming deadline, can the management team ensure the crew completes its work without major catastrophe?

Join the crew of Bronco #1 during their five-months of struggles, setbacks and triumphs in Alberta’s oil sands country in The Rig: Oil Sands. Highlights from the first episodes include:

The Rig: Oil Sands – “Rig Race”

Wed., Dec. 26 at 9 p.m. ET/11 p.m. PT

After a prolonged industry-wide slowdown, MacPhee is recruited by Bronco Energy, an up-and-coming oil company. Bronco’s agreement with the Bigstone Cree Nation – to drill on their lands without compromising the environment – presents a unique challenge for MacPhee and his new team. But before MacPhee can start drilling in Wabasca, he has to finish building the new rig in time for a prestigious oil and gas show.

The Rig: Oil Sands – “Shifting Gears”

Wed., Jan. 2 at 9 p.m. ET/10 p.m. PT

MacPhee and the crew are working hard to get Bronco #1 field-ready, when they receive a request to complete the work in time to display the rig in the Bigstone Cree Nation’s Canada Day Parade. While grappling with that challenge, MacPhee learns that the rig will be pressed into field service even earlier than planned. Will he be able to fulfill this request in time for the Bigstone Cree Nation’s celebration?

The Rig: Oil Sands – “Showtime”

Wed., Jan. 9 at 9 p.m. ET/10 p.m. PT

Bronco #1 moves to the worksite, but poor weather impedes set up and the crew has to be up and drilling in time for a very important investor analysts’ tour. Can MacPhee and the team overcome the elements and have the rig show-ready by the time their influential guests arrive?

The Rig: Oil Sands – “Hit the Ground Rigging”

Wed., Jan. 16 at 9 p.m. ET/10 p.m. PT

The installation of new drilling equipment and other unforeseen technical difficulties puts the crew of Bronco #1 behind schedule to drill their first hole. Adding to the stress, rig manager MacPhee is less than impressed with his inexperienced co-manager. Can they overcome their differences and make headway on the first hole before a serious delay in their schedule?

The Rig: Oil Sands is produced by Anaid Productions in association with OLN.

The Rig

Mon., Dec. 24 – Mon., Dec. 31 at 9 p.m. ET

Get a glimpse into the world of Alberta’s oil and gas industry and find out which “riggers” will hack it long enough to reap the rewards and make a career for themselves amidst the black gold. Discover the physical and emotional trials and the shifting dynamics of the rig’s three crews, including members of the rough and tough drilling crew, geologists, consultants, their city-based bosses and the eclectic support community that keeps the camp running. Also, as a holiday treat, catch a sneak peak of the second season, The Rig: Oil Sands, on Wed., Dec. 26 at 9 p.m. ET/6 p.m. PT. (Additional broadcast and program details to follow).