CTV Orders New Canadian Daytime Talk Series THE SOCIAL for Fall 2013

- Melissa Grelo, Lainey Lui, Cynthia Loyst, and Traci Melchor announced as co-hosts -

-THE SOCIAL offers advertisers four-screen brand partnership opportunities -
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TORONTO, March 25, 2013 /CNW/ - Afternoons are about to get a lot more social, Canada! CTV announced today it has ordered THE SOCIAL, an all-new, one-hour, daily Canadian talk series from Bell Media In-House Productions for the upcoming 2013/14 broadcast season. The original series was conceived and developed to deliver a unique Canadian voice to the CTV daytime schedule, in addition to providing custom opportunities for CTV's advertising partners. Adding five new hours of original Canadian content each week (260 total hours/year) to CTV's #1 daytime lineup, THE SOCIAL brings a fresh perspective on the up-to-the-minute pop culture and lifestyle topics that matter most to Canadians. THE SOCIAL also provides an innovative outlet for viewers who love a friendly debate through social media, e-mail, and text messaging - no topic is off limits! - as the only program of its kind on English Canadian conventional television.

Joining THE MARILYN DENIS SHOW - Canada's most-watched original daytime series - as CTV's second Canadian daytime program, THE SOCIAL will air live weekday afternoons on CTV. The smart, bold, advertiser-friendly series will be produced before a live studio audience from Bell Media's iconic 299 Queen West location in Toronto and executive produced by Michelle Crespi (THE MARILYN DENIS SHOW).

"We are very proud to add another Canadian series to our winning daytime lineup," said Phil King, President, CTV Programming and Sports. "THE SOCIAL will reflect the pulse of what Canadians are talking about on a daily basis."

As part of today's announcement, CTV named four of the most engaging and opinionated women on Canadian television today as co-hosts of THE SOCIAL. Cast from Bell Media's diverse original productions, THE SOCIAL brings together a dynamic and influential group of co-hosts with distinct points of view: news anchor Melissa Grelo (@melissagrelo), Canada's foremost gossip blogger Lainey Lui (@LaineyGossip ), relationship expert Cynthia Loyst (@cynthialoyst, and entertainment reporter Traci Melchor @stayfabulous). Surprise celebrity guest co-hosts also join the panel to speak to the news or pop culture events of the day.

**Media Note** Download photography of the cast of THE SOCIAL at BellMediaPR.ca.

"With a truly vibrant cast and a top-notch production team, Bell Media In-House Productions is poised to make an impact for both viewers and advertisers with THE SOCIAL," said Rick Brace, President, Specialty Channels and CTV Production.

"Our co-hosts' natural chemistry is clearly evident, and with their wealth of TV experience, combined with their varied expertise, conversations on THE SOCIAL will be dynamic, fun, and fearless. There is really no topic this group can't handle," said Michelle Crespi, Executive Producer.

CTV also confirmed today that new sponsorship and brand partnership opportunities are immediately available for the original series. Whether it is product integration, customized activations, or original branded content, CTV Brand Partnerships will work with clients and their brands to offer consumers an exciting and engaging four-screen experience for THE SOCIAL

"This is exactly the type of series advertisers have been asking for," said Mary Kreuk, Vice-President, Brand Partnerships, Bell Media. "There is a tremendous opportunity for clients to be involved in building THE SOCIAL from the ground up."

During each show, the four co-hosts ask the questions on viewers' minds, and provide their own spin on the latest headlines and topics. The show opens with a lively round-table debate and discussion by the co-hosts of the day's top news stories. THE SOCIAL then features celebrity interviews and discussion about lifestyle topics inspired by viewers. During the live program, the panel checks in on various social media platforms, such as Twitter, Facebook, or Instagram. The topical feel of the show allows the co-hosts to engage with viewers through social media, e-mail, and text messaging on a real-time basis. THE SOCIAL will also air live on CTV Mobile and will be available on demand on CTV.ca and TheLoop.ca.

Meet the Co-Hosts of THE SOCIAL:

Melissa Grelo
Current anchor and co-host of Toronto's CP24 BREAKFAST, Melissa is devoted to getting to the heart of stories that matter most to viewers. The moderator of the panel of co-hosts, Melissa is a multi-tasker with a capital "M". Whether it's breaking news or the latest celebrity breakup, Melissa is on top of it the minute it happens, and armed with her smartphone, shares it with her 20,000 Twitter followers.

Lainey Lui
Relocating from Vancouver to Toronto for THE SOCIAL, celebrity gossip blogger, ETALK reporter, and avid pop culture consumer Lainey brings her unique spin on entertainment and applies it to all topics. With her enormously successful website LaineyGossip.com and a huge online community of nearly 70,000 Twitter followers, Lainey does what she does for one reason - to share her love of gossip with Canadians.

Cynthia Loyst
TheLoop.ca's love and relationship expert, Cynthia is also a much sought-after certified relationship coach. As an on-air personality, Cynthia has covered everything from San Diego Comic-Con to the Toronto International Film Festival® (TIFF). And as a soon-to-be mom, Cynthia will share her real and raw perspective on her most important job to date.

Traci Melchor
From touring the world with Rihanna to interviewing the likes of Jennifer Lopez and George Clooney as an ETALK reporter, Traci has been an icon on the Canadian entertainment scene for more than a decade. As a single mom with two active seven-year old twins, Traci has a very candid and personal story related to every topic - and she isn't afraid to share it.

SOCIAL MEDIA LINKS:

Twitter:
@CTV_PR
@CTV_Television
Melissa Grelo - @melissagrelo
Lainey - @LaineyGossip 
Traci Melchor@stayfabulous
Cynthia Loyst - @cynthialoyst

Facebook:
facebook.com/ctv

About THE SOCIAL
Produced by Bell Media In-House Productions, THE SOCIAL brings a fresh, daily, perspective on the up-to-the-minute pop culture and lifestyle topics that matter most to Canadians in a socially interactive format. The series is co-hosted by Melissa Grelo, Lainey Lui, Cynthia Loyst, and Traci Melchor. Michelle Crespi is Executive Producer. Laura Scarfo is Supervising Producer. Nanci Maclean is Executive Director, Bell Media Production. Catherine MacLeod is Vice-President, Specialty Channels, Bell Media. Rick Brace is President, Specialty Channels and CTV Production. Mike Cosentino is Senior Vice-President, Programming, CTV Networks. Phil King is President, CTV Programming and Sports.

About Bell Media In-House Productions
Bell Media In-House Productions creates thousands of hours of original Canadian programming each week. Hit CTV series include Canada's #1 most-watched entertainment newsmagazine ETALK and the #1 Canadian daytime series THE MARILYN DENIS SHOW. New for 2013 on CTV is daytime talk series THE SOCIAL premiering this fall. Producing some 650 hours of television weekly, CTV News is Canada's most-watched news programming both locally and nationally, and includes CTV NATIONAL NEWS, CTV NEWS, CANADA AM, W-FIVE, as well as CTV News Channel's EXPRESS, BNN's MARKET CALL and HEADLINE, CP24's flagship show CP24 BREAKFAST, CTV News specials, and more. Fan-favourites SPORTSCENTRE, OFF THE RECORD, and NHL ON TSN anchor TSN and TSN2's lineups of nearly 3,000 hours of in-house produced content, and 3,000 original events a year. In-house produced series on Bell Media specialty channels include DAILY PLANET, INNERSPACE, MTV SHOWTOWN, 1 GIRL 5 GAYS, and NEW.MUSIC.LIVE, among others. In-house produced star-studded specials include CTV's annual red carpet show CTV AT THE OSCARS, MuchMusic's THE BIG JINGLE, and the Gemini Award-winning MUCHMUSIC VIDEO AWARDS. In total, Bell Media currently has 76 in-house produced programs in production.

About CTV
CTV is Canada's #1 private broadcaster. Featuring a wide range of quality news, sports, information, and entertainment programming, CTV has been Canada's most-watched television network for the past 10 years in a row. CTV is a division of Bell Media, Canada's premier multimedia company with leading assets in television, radio and digital. Bell Media is owned by BCE Inc. (TSX, NYSE: BCE), Canada's largest communications company. More information about CTV can be found on the network's website at ctv.ca.

SOURCE: CTV

For further information:

Amanda Rinaldo, Entertainment Specialties, Bell Media, 416.384.5325 or amanda.rinaldo@bellmedia.ca