APTN News: Blackstone to make series; Wolf Canyon‘s fate up in the air

As mentioned on APTN’s Twitter account, Blackstone will receive an eight-episode season.

Neither APTN nor Prairie Dog Film & Television have officially announced the series order, aside from APTN’s Twitter post.  No time or date has been set for Blackstone‘s series premiere.

Blackstone was one of the potential series in APTN’s Pick a Pilot project.  In my opinion, it is the best pilot to come out of that project.

Blackstone‘s pilot has good dramatic tension and incites controversy.  I’ve wanted for this show to become a series since it first aired.  Blackstone focuses on political corruption at a First Nations reserve, which is a tough subject to handle without being alarmist or heavy-handed.

I hope Blackstone isn’t watered-down from its pilot.  I’m honestly looking forward to it more than any other Canadian drama of 2010-11.  Blackstone has the potential to really mean something.

Addendum (July 12, 2010) | The media release for Blackstone, which has just been released, states that the show will air on both APTN and Showcase come “early 2011.”  No word on whether Blackstone will be simulcast.

Further Addendum (December 20, 2010) | A new press release gives two dates for Blackstone‘s debut.

Blackstone‘s pilot will screen on APTN Tuesday, January 25, 2011 at 9:00 PM ET, with the second episode airing February 1, 2011.  I don’t consider the pilot notable, as APTN has used it as filler for more than a year now.

Showcase will debut Blackstone Friday, January 28, 2011, at 11:00 PM ET/PT.  The 11:00 PM airtime tells me Showcase has no faith in the show.  Believe me, this is not Cashing In.  I think Blackstone will surprise a few people.

Wolf Canyon‘s fate is less clear than Blackstone‘s.  According to Wolf Canyon co-creator and writer Tim Stubinski, APTN has passed on Wolf Canyon as the sole first broadcaster of the series.

This doesn’t mean Wolf Canyon is dead.  Tricon Films and Television currently distributes the property, and is trying to sell other broadcasters on its merits.

APTN might air Wolf Canyon in a shared-first-window or second-window capacity.  In layman’s terms, APTN will team up with another network/cable channel or air Wolf Canyon secondhand.  Stubinski chalks this decision to “economics.”

Wolf Canyon made a killing at the 2010 Leo Awards.  The show won five of seven Leos, winning in every category it was nominated in.  The Leos apply to shows and films shot in British Columbia.

I’m sure Wolf Canyon will find another broadcaster.  Kevin Sorbo has his fans, while the Leos help the show’s cause.  WC even has a respectable rating on IMDb.  This show will find a home.

Keep in mind, Blackstone hit big at the 2010 Rosie Awards, winning in five categories.  The Rosies are to Alberta what the Leos are to British Columbia.  Whatever APTN’s doing, it’s working.

C. Archer
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