ION TELEVISION ENTERS INTO ORIGINAL CO-PRODUCTION DEAL ON TV DRAMA SERIES \"THE LISTENER\"
‘The Listener’ Will Launch Mid-Season as an Original Series on ION Television
WEST PALM BEACH, February 24, 2014 – ION Television today announced an agreement to produce new original episodes of the procedural drama “The Listener.” ION joins Shaftesbury, CTV and Fox International as co-producers on the drama, which started production on 13 new original episodes earlier this year. The agreement makes ION the exclusive original U.S. television network for current and future seasons of the series.
“‘The Listener’ fits seamlessly into our lineup of drama series, providing the reliable quality and originality our loyal audience and clients look for,” said Brandon Burgess, Chairman and CEO of ION Media Networks. “An equally important dimension is the collaboration with CTV and Shaftesbury, as we look for additional new original projects in this genre.”
“‘The Listener’ is an original blend of drama, investigation, action and humor.” said Christina Jennings, Chairman and CEO of Shaftesbury. “We’re thrilled to be able to introduce the series to viewers in the U.S. in partnership with ION.”
ION plans a 2014 mid-season launch for “The Listener,” joining its lineup of strong procedural dramas that have made it one of the few U.S. television networks showing season-to-date ratings growth.
“The Listener” joins ION’s portfolio of acclaimed dramas, including “Criminal Minds,” “Cold Case,” “Law & Order: Criminal Intent”, “Burn Notice,” “Psych” and “Leverage.” This announcement comes on the heels of ION’s recent acquisition of the high profile drama “Blue Bloods” from CBS, which will be joining the ION schedule this fall.
“The Listener” is the latest scripted ION Television original and joins the network following the success of the original series, “Flashpoint”, along with ION’s made-for-TV original movies.
Starring Craig Olejnik, “The Listener” centers on mind-reading police consultant Toby Logan, who uses his telepathic ability to help a special law enforcement unit solve the most complicated cases. Having kept his unique power hidden for years, Toby learns to harness his skill to help others and save lives. The series also stars Ennis Esmer as Oz Bey; Lauren Lee Smith as Sergeant Michelle McCluskey; Rainbow Sun Francks as Corporal Dev Clark; Peter Stebbings as Alvin Klein; Tara Spencer-Nairn as Sandy; and Mylène Dinh-Robic as Olivia Fawcett.
“The Listener” is produced by Shaftesbury in association with CTV and Fox International Channels, and is distributed by Shine International. The series was created by writer Michael Amo and is executive produced by Christina Jennings and Scott Garvie for Shaftesbury, Sharon Tal Yguado for Fox International Channels, and Peter Mohan, who serves as showrunner.
About ION Television
A leading U.S. general entertainment network, ION Television combines high-quality programming and dependable distribution with an attitude of innovation and growth. Its "Positively Entertaining" network brand positioning features a formula of proven series, an expansive catalog of blockbuster movies and a commitment to introduce new original programming. ION Television has grown its Adults 25-54 audience by 69% since launching just six years ago and has consistently remained among the top 15 entertainment networks. For more information, visit www.iontelevision.com.
With offices in Toronto and Los Angeles, Shaftesbury is a global thought leader and innovator of original content for all platforms in more than 120 countries. Shaftesbury’s slate includes five seasons of The Listener for CTV and Fox International Channels; seven seasons of Murdoch Mysteries for UKTV, ITV STUDIOS Global Entertainment, Citytv and CBC; and the hit kids’ series Life with Derek. Shaftesbury’s groundbreaking digital media division, Smokebomb Entertainment, creates convergent extensions for television and original transmedia content including the comedy series Backpackers for CTV and CW Seed; tween series Totally Amp’d and Unlikely Heroes for YTV.com and Hulu; and 3D science fiction series State of Syn for Hulu. Visit us online at http://www.shaftesbury.ca and http://www.smokebomb.ca.
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ION Media Networks
Stephanie Baumoel/Erin Mahon
FerenComm for ION