Something is wrong if THIS GUY can’t boost the TV audience for your award show…

The Canadian Screen Awards main gala was broadcast Sunday night on CBC. The hour-long industry salute, which was hosted by Samantha Bee and featured one of the biggest names in sports and entertainment (Ryan Reynolds), drew an overnight, estimated 136,000 viewers. Yes, that is out of all viewers across Canada ages 2+.

The lead-in Sunday on CBC was Best in Miniature, which could also describe the ratings for the 2023 Canadian Screen Awards. The season finale of this competition show about building teeny tiny house interiors drew 50,000 more viewers than the annual celebration of the best in Canadian film and television.

The new CBC series which launched right after the CSA awards was Essex County. Sixty thousand Canadians across the country caught the opener. More people live in Essex county.

The National at 10 p.m.? The network’s flagship newscast was watched Sunday night by an overnight, estimated 209,000 viewers.

Now, look, I am just the messenger. Where is the commitment of support from the Academy and from the broadcaster? April is for post-mortems in Canadian broadcasting, not promotion. It’s too late when the series that wins a record number of CSA trophies has been cancelled more than a month before its historic win. More viewers may have hopped on that train if they heard it was HBO-good ahead of time.

If you sponsored the Canadian Screen Awards, thank you for supporting film and TV industries that both do world-class work. When you are approached to sponsor the 2024 awards, however, please ask the Academy of Canadian Cinema and Television and all broadcasters the following: how can we best schedule and re-imagine the engine that helps drive viewers to these shows we are gathering to celebrate?


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