CTV Orders Gripping Serialized Drama Series CARDINAL, Based on Bestselling Crime Novels by Award-Winning Canadian Author Giles Blunt

– CTV's first-ever original serialized drama to be produced by Toronto-based Sienna Films and Entertainment One –
– Production set to begin in February 2016

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TORONTO, Nov. 13, 2015 /CNW/ - CTV announced today that it has ordered the serialized, six-part, one-hour drama series CARDINAL (working title) from Toronto-based Sienna Films and Entertainment One (eOne). The cinematic murder mystery is based on the John Cardinal Mysteries, a series of six bestselling crime novels written by Ontario native and award-winning author Giles Blunt. The exclusive venture marks CTV's first-ever series adaption from a novel. This gripping, character driven drama will premiere as part of CTV's 2016/17 schedule, with production set to begin in February 2016. Casting for CARDINAL will be announced soon.  

CARDINAL was first put into development by CTV in 2011. The series adaptation is developed for television and written by Canadian Screen Award-winner Aubrey Nealon (ORPHAN BLACK, SAVING HOPE), who also serves as an Executive Producer and Showrunner, directed by the award-winning Montréal native Daniel Grou (19-2, TU M'AIMES-TU?), and is executive produced by Sienna Films duo Julia Sereny and Jennifer Kawaja (COMBAT HOSPITAL).

"We have been searching for an engaging serialized drama that would create a weekly must-see appointment for a mass audience," said Mike Cosentino, Senior Vice-President, Programming, CTV Networks and CraveTV. "We believe CARDINAL will deliver on all fronts for CTV and become a must-watch title for CraveTV."

"We are thrilled to be producing CTV's first original serialized drama in partnership with eOne," said Jennifer Kawaja, Co-President, Sienna Films. "We have a great team coming together to bring the Northern Ontario setting and this story with universal appeal to television."

CARDINAL is adapted from the award-winning novel Forty Words for Sorrow, the first of the John Cardinal Mysteries series. The series begins with the discovery of Katie Pine, a missing 13-year-old whose body is discovered in the shaft-head of an abandoned mine. The series follows detective John Cardinal as he attempts to uncover the mystery of what happened to the young girl. At the same time, unbeknownst to Cardinal, he comes under investigation by his new partner, Lise Delorme, a tough investigator in her own right.

CARDINAL is produced by Sienna Films and eOne in association with Bell Media, with the financial participation of the Northern Ontario Heritage Fund Corporation, the Canada Media Fund and the Cogeco Production Program, and with the assistance of the Ontario Film and Television Tax Credit and the Canadian Film or Video Production Tax Credit. Super Écran has commissioned the series for French-language Canadian broadcast. eOne will distribute the series worldwide.

Executive producers are Julia Sereny and Jennifer Kawaja, and Aubrey Nealon, who also serves as Showrunner. For Bell Media, Carrie Paupst Shaughnessy is Production Executive; Tom Hastings is Director, Drama, Independent Production; and Corrie Coe is Senior Vice-President, Independent Production. Mike Cosentino is Senior Vice-President, Programming, CTV Networks and CraveTV. Randy Lennox is President, Entertainment Production and Broadcasting, Bell Media.



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About Sienna Films
Helmed by Jennifer Kawaja and Julia Sereny, Sienna Films is the producer of internationally recognized television programs and feature films.  Recently completed is Irish-Canadian feature UNLESS starring Catherine Keener, based on the novel by Carol Shields.  Previous television includes series COMBAT HOSPITAL for Shaw Media, ABC and Sony International; Julian Fellowes-penned mini-series TITANIC, a Canada-UK-Hungary co-production for ITV, Shaw Media and ABC; and mini-series DIAMONDS for CBC, ABC and Antennae. Sienna's feature films include HOW SHE MOVE (Paramount Vantage/MTV Films); TOUCH OF PINK (Sony Pictures Classics); New Waterford Girl (Alliance Atlantis)]; I, Claudia; Marion Bridge and Saint Monica. They have played at film festivals including Sundance, Toronto International, Berlin and Rotterdam.

About Entertainment One
Entertainment One Ltd. (LSE:ETO) is a leading international entertainment company that specializes in the acquisition, production and distribution of film and television content.  The company's comprehensive network extends around the globe including Canada, the U.S., the UK, Ireland, Spain, Benelux, France, Germany, Scandinavia, Australia, New Zealand, and South Africa.  Through established Film and Television divisions, the company provides extensive expertise in film distribution, television and music production, family programming, merchandising and licensing, and digital content. Its current rights library is exploited across all media formats and includes more than 40,000 film and television titles, 4,500 hours of television programming and 45,000 music tracks.

About Bell Media Independent Production
Bell Media has commissioned some of Canada's most-watched and most-acclaimed original programming, working with the best Canadian independent producers in the country. Hit series commissioned by CTV include ratings success stories SAVING HOPE, MOTIVE, the record-breaking THE AMAZING RACE CANADA, and MASTERCHEF CANADA. Among the original scripted series on Bell Media pay and specialty channels are the internationally acclaimed ORPHAN BLACK, the smash-hit thriller BITTEN, Space's most-watched original series KILLJOYS, Bravo's most-watched original drama 19-2, award-winning dramedy SENSITIVE SKIN, and upcoming cult comedy, LETTERKENNY. Bell Media specialty channels are also home to hit factual series HIGHWAY THRU HELL, COLD WATER COWBOYS, and CANADA'S WORST DRIVER, among others.

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 13 years in a row. CTV is a division of Bell Media, Canada's premier multimedia company with leading assets in television, radio, digital, and Out-of-Home. 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.


For further information: Laura Heath Potter, Director of Communications, CTV Networks, 416.384.4633 or laura.heathpotter@bellmedia.ca; Allie Page, Senior Manager, Communications, CTV Networks, 416.384.4596 or allie.page@bellmedia.ca

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