Plepler says HBO will continue to “curate excellence”

CANNES — Richard Plepler just looks like money. He always appears as if he just stepped off one of the 200-foot yachts docked in the harbour surrounding the main pavilion here at MIPCOM. He looks like Thurston Howell the Fourth or Fifth. HBO’s Chairman and CEO was presented with the “Hey, he showed up” award Monday… Read on



Jennings a worthy Lifetime Achievement award winner

CANNES — You didn’t need Detective Murdoch to solve this mystery — Christina Jennings was just honored with a Lifetime Achievement Award. It happened Sunday night at the Content Innovation Awards, held each year as part of the international television marketplace MIPCOM. The Shaftesbury chairman and CEO was recognized for staying out front in the increasingly disruptive… Read on


Netflix wants your kids. Now. Every damn week.

CANNES — Andy Yeatman, Netflix’s head of Global Kids Content and 2017 MIP Junior keynote speaker, was asked how he limited the amount of television he allows his three young daughters to watch. Simple, says Yeatman, “They only watch TV on iPads, and we keep them high up out of reach when showtime is over.” Huh.… Read on


Pingu packs MIP Junior without so much as a peep

CANNES — This town loves it when a former star makes a comeback. Take the latest example — Pingu. The mischievous little penguin, famous for squawking and hooting in his inimitable “Pinguinese,” was a British-Swiss stop-motion sensation that has entertained children and parents since 1986. A world wide hit because a) it never needed to be dubbed or… Read on



MIP Junior 2017 features some familiar faces

CANNES — Another October brings me to the south of France to cover my fourth MIPCOM international television market. This time I came a day or two early to also check out MIP Junior, where those in the children’s TV racket gather to sell their wares to the world. For decades Canada has been a particularly robust… Read on


Q&A with White Famous star Jay Pharoah

Jay Pharoah stars in the new Showtime comedy White Famous. The series premieres this Sunday in Canada on CraveTV. I spoke with Pharoah on the phone about a month ago. The publicist threw one of those last-minute curve balls before putting him on the line: “No questions about Saturday Night Live.” Pharoah owes his fame… Read on


CMF waves funding flag for Canadian television

OTTAWA – Many politicians say they don’t have time to watch TV. They do, however, through various funding agencies, help to pay for it. One of the top agencies, The Canada Media Fund, brought TV stars and politicians together earlier this month in a talent showcase held directly across from Parliament Hill. Gathered inside the beautifully restored… Read on


The Disappearance draws Peter Coyote off the farm

Tonight, The Disappearance will finally appear on CTV. I was on location with the stars and crew nearly a year ago in a rural campground area a half-hour west of Montreal. The six-hour limited run series is about a young boy of ten (played by the remarkably professional Michael Riendeau of Ottawa) who goes missing… Read on