The Transporter

Corus Entertainment’s Movie Central (Western Canada) and Astral’s The Movie Network (Eastern Canada) announced today the Canadian original series that have been greenlit for production in 2011/2012.

The line-up includes new seasons of returning comedies Call Me Fitz (Season 3), Funny as Hell (Season 2) and Good Dog (Season 2) as well as the blockbuster international co-production Transporter: The Series, produced in partnership with Cinemax/HBO.

“We are extremely pleased to have so many returning Canadian series and exciting new projects this year,” said Jocelyn Hamilton, Vice President, Original Programming, Kids, Comedy, Drama, Corus Entertainment. “The triumph of Call Me Fitz is an amazing example of a Canadian series finding an audience at home and accolades internationally.”

“The Movie Network is on the crest of a new wave of original programming that is changing the way Canada and the world thinks about Canadian content,” said Aubie Greenberg, Director, Original Programming, Movie Services, Astral Television Networks. “Recent international sales indicate that 100% Canadian shows like Call Me Fitz resonate both here in Canada and on the global stage and are achieving new levels of success. Simultaneously, we’re collaborating with major international partners like HBO/Cinemax on series like Transporter that allow us to leverage Canadian talent and expertise and pursue a more ambitious scale of production. The real winners in this new era are ultimately our subscribers, who will enjoy even more premium entertainment.”

These greenlit series join a robust slate of original Movie Central and The Movie Network productions set to premiere in 2011/2012. Upcoming series, films and documentaries include:

·         The four-part mini-series adaptation of Michel Faber’s The Crimson Petal and the White, an international co-production between Cité Amerique in Canada and the British Broadcasting Corporation (BBC) that stars Chris O’Dowd, Gillian Anderson and Richard E Grant ;

·         Barrymore (Barrymore Entertainment Ltd.), which captures a live performance of the Tony Award-winning play starring the legendary Christopher Plummer;

·         Beauty Day (Primitive Entertainment), the festival audience-favourite documentary about original Jackass Ralph Zavadil (aka Cap’n Video);

·         Playing With Fire (Pyramid films Inc.), a feature documentary based on the best-selling book by controversial hockey great Theo Fleury;

·         The Captains (Le Big Boss Productions Inc.), written and directed by William Shatner, The Captains is a feature-length documentary that  explores the impact Star Trek has had on the icon’s life;

·         SATAN: The Documentary (Banger Films Inc), a funny and twisted look at the history and influence of the Devil in pop culture from the creative team behind Global Metal and Rush: Beyond the Lighted Stage.




Transporter: The Series, the TV adaptation of the successful film franchise, will film in Toronto later this Summer and is an international co-production between Canada’s QVF Inc., M6 and Atlantique Productions in France, Germany’s RTL Group and HBO/Cinemax in the U.S. This 12-part one-hour episode series stars Chris Vance (Dexter, Prison Break) as Frank Martin, the franchise’s hero, along with François Berléand (Transporter films), Andrea Osvart (Duplicity) and Delphine Chanéac (Splice).


Call Me Fitz has become an international success and a fan favourite with the first season of the Canadian series recently premiering on DirecTV in the U.S. The half-hour comedy stars Jason Priestley as Richard “Fitz” Fitzpatrick, a morally degenerate used car salesman who is forced to welcome Larry, the actual living embodiment of his conscience, into his life. Call Me Fitz Season 2 is scheduled to premiere in Fall 2011 on HBO Canada and Season 3 is slated for production in 2011/2012 with 12 more half-hour episodes. Call Me Fitz is produced by E1 Entertainment, Amaze Film + Television, Big Motion Pictures, and created and executive produced by Sheri Elwood.


Canadian comic extraordinaire and series host Jon Dore returns with Funny As Hell Season 2, featuring more bold, uncensored stand-up from rising comedy stars, mixed with musical comedy and digital shorts. Produced by Just For Laughs Television, the eight-part, half-hour second season will be shot in front of a live audience at the 29th Just For Laughs Festival in July. Season 2 confirmed comics include Kristen Schaal (The Flight of the Conchords, The Daily Show with Jon Stewart) , Hannibal Buress (30 Rock, Saturday Night Live), Bill Burr (Date Night, Chappelle’s Show) and Arj Barker (Flight of the Conchords) will premiere on HBO Canada in Winter 2012.


Created by and starring acclaimed writer, director and producer Ken Finkleman, Good Dog (Shaftesbury Films) focuses on the life of irritable, narcissistic TV producer George Findlay. In the second 10 x 30’ season of Good Dog, George will find himself playing the good dog in order to try to please an entirely new master as he takes the helm of a new Canadian right-wing conservative news network. Good Dog is produced by Shaftesbury. The first season of the series premiered on HBO Canada in March 2011, with season two set to commence production in June 2011.

Astral’s The Movie Network (Eastern Canada) and Corus Entertainment’s Movie Central (Western Canada) today announced their participation in the 12-part action series Transporter-The Series.

Based on the high-octane Transporter films, the series is an international co-production between The Movie Network and Movie Central, Canada’s QVF Inc., M6 and Atlantique Productions in France, Germany’s RTL Group and HBO/Cinemax in the U.S.

“The Movie Network is all about premium entertainment and we’re proud to add this made-in-Canada big-budget action series to our original content offering,” said Aubie Greenberg, Director, Original Programming, Movie Services, Astral Television. “The theatrical Transporter franchise has connected with audiences on The Movie Network and around the world through its iconic characters and frenetic pace. We’re excited to further this connection through participation in such a large-scale production, especially one that takes our long-standing partnership with HBO to the next level.”

“We are thrilled to be partnering with HBO/Cinemax,” said Jocelyn Hamilton, Vice President, Original Programming, Kids, Comedy, Drama, Corus Entertainment. “As a franchise, Transporter offers a solid fan base with appeal to grow into an exciting series. Filming in Toronto with our world class production partners, the action-filled series will bring the beloved character of Frank Martin to premium television.”

Based on the popular film franchise of the same name created by Luc Besson, this fast-paced series follows the adventures of professional transporter Frank Martin (Chris Vance), who can always be counted on to get the job done. Operating in a seedy underworld of dangerous criminals and desperate players, Frank plays by three rules: never change the deal, no names and never open the package. Occasionally, complications arise and rules get broken. Good thing Frank can improvise. The series will premiere on HBO Canada in 2012.

Transporter-The Series is a France/Canada co-production produced by Atlantique Productions SA (Klaus Zimmermann) and QVF Inc. (Susan Murdoch). Executive producers are Luc Besson, Alexander Ruemelin, Fred Fuchs, Robert Cooper, Joseph Mallozzi and Paul Mullie.

The Transporter film series is on its way to the small screen with plans for a new television series based on the explosive action flicks.

Lagardere Entertainmnet and EuropaCorp are working together to launch the news series which will run for 12 episodes in its first season.

The franchise will be distributed internationally with discussions already underway in regards to the major networks and broadcast deals.

The Transporter series will begin shooting in early 2011 in European locations as well as Canada with casting being undertaken at the moment in London, with plans to scour both LA and locally in Toronto.

The Jason Statham-starring movies followed an ex-special forces agent as he transported various “packages” for large sums of money. The franchise which ran between 2002-08 was directed by French director Luc Besson.

Signed on as writer and show-runner of the TV production is German Alexander Rumelin. There is no word yet on a director.

Source: THR