Director Kondracki set table for fun “Picnic” shoot

FX president John Landgraf was embarrassed to learn a few years ago that the shows on his network had very few female directors. He took steps to correct that, mandating his producers embrace a 50/50 gender policy. Others, including the CBC here in Canada, have followed suit. It’s about time. Canadian productions have long benefited… Read on



Great Canadian Baking heating up for September

Mmmmm… great Canadian baking. I followed my nose to the Canadian Film Centre campus in uptown Toronto Tuesday morning as The Great Canadian Baking Show was shooting the final two episodes of its second season. The series returns Sept. 19 on CBC. Did reporters get to sample any of the wares? We did not. I… Read on


How Jerry Springer led to the rise of Donald Trump

When the news broke this week that, after 27 years, The Jerry Springer Show was being cancelled, my reaction — like a lot of people I suspect — was, “Is that still on?” Back when I wrote for The Toronto Sun, I remember arriving for an interview with Springer 15 years or so ago when he… Read on


London Film Museum puts 007’s wheels on display

LONDON — I’m in The UK for a few days to interview the stars and producers of Tom Clancy’s Jack Ryan, a series based on the best selling novels and subsequent feature films. Partially shot in Montreal, the action-packed new series will premiere on Amazon Prime Video at the end of August. John Krazinski, buffed… Read on



Ten teams announced for The Amazing Race Canada: Heroes Edition

Go Brampton! We’ve finally got one of our own to cheer for as The Amazing Race Canada returns in a brand new “Heroes Edition.” Teams were announced this week with the series premiering Tuesday, July 3 on CTV and CTV GO. Ever since it launched, TARC has been the most-watched home-grown series in Canada and… Read on


Looking back at upfront: CTV gets last word

I know Randy Lennox reads this blog. He told me so himself during Bell’s annual breakfast with the executives during last Thursday’s upfront in Toronto. The Bell Media president told me, in fact, that he was nearly run over as he was crossing the street while reading my take on the Rogers and Corus upfronts.… Read on


WEDNESDAY: Corus puts the U.S. in “USfronts”

Time to give some credit where credit is due. Last year’s Corus upfront, I whinged here, seemed a tad awkward. There were super short interview opportunities and a great gulf, in the the group I was in at least, between the talent and the reporters. This Wednesday, things were greatly improved. For starters, this year’s… Read on


Dining out at Fran’s with Howie, Coates & Grier

Rogers brought the stars out for their 2018 Upfront Tuesday and treated them to a true slice of Toronto. One by one, Howie Mandel, David Alan Grier, Kim Coates and others were ushered into humble eaterie Fran’s Restaurant. The diner ended up being an unconventional — yet appetizing — place to grab eight minutes with… Read on