Wednesday, July 29, 2009

Flashpoint Official DVD Cover Revealed

Hey Flashpoint Fans, this is a few days old but we've been busy at Moon Chase so we didn't get to posting this. An animator died, and the show began making it's comeback. Nonetheless, TVShowsonDVD confirms that the earlier, low-res, image that they posted is indeed the image on the cover of the upcoming US only boxset, and they posted a full 3-D, higher resolution image. This release will have extras, whereas the other international versions did not. We've posted images of the other two releases below for you all to see - which cover do you readers like best?

UK Boxset:

Australia Boxset:

Thursday, July 23, 2009

BREAKING NEWS: Flashpoint Recieves Telefilm Funding for Video Game!

Via Playback Daily, this morning we learned that Telefilm Canada just days ago,unveiled product assistance funding from its $15 million Canada New Media Fund. One of the productions receiving a funding advance from this is Flashpoint, and these funds are going towards the production of an interactive video game. Canadian company Xenophile Media is developing a cross platform Flashpoint Interactive game which will allow players (playing as police recruits), to learn negotiating skills, rifle marksmanship and other techniques employed by SRU on the show! Patrick Crow, co-president of Xenophile Media gave a few more details about the project, and said "the training module game, with five missions as part of its role-playing scenarios, aims to help engage Flashpoint fans during and between TV season runs, and return a profit to investors, including the Bell Fund, CTV and Telefilm Canada, when eventually sold internationally." The game also aims to attract viewers to help boost up ratings, series sponsorship, and international sales. This is very exciting, and all of us on staff look forward to playing this when it comes out! Xenophile has been nominated and/or won awards for other interactive media sidekicks to TV shows and movies such as ReGenesis, Total Drama Island, Fallen, and M.I. High. These awards include Emmys and the Rose D'Or out of Britain! Congratulations to the cast and crew of Flashpoint and Xenophile Media on what is sure to be an exciting venture!

Tuesday, July 21, 2009

Flashbits from July 2009!

Flashpoint has had a couple bits in the news in recent days!

New Episodes' Delay a Relief For Producers

Hot on the heels of CBS's sudden announcement that new episodes of Flashpoint were not going to air last week, we uncovered a few comments from Producer Bill Mustos on Playback Magazine. And they suggest that this delay is not necessarily a bad thing! Bill says:
"We've been able to slow down post-production, which is a bit of a relief to us because we've been on a very fast schedule"

Which we can understand - the show began shooting this year in January and is scheduled to continue until August. Mustos also said that CTV has ordered 13 episodes for a third season, and depending on CBS's return this may be extended to 18. He also noted that there is a lot of confusion in keeping track of Flashpoint's episodes since Season 2 in North America began with four episodes held back from the first season! This is one of the first acknowledgments we've heard from anyone involved with the show about this confusion! He also confirmed that the show is coming back to CBS as a midseason replacement. CTV has still not confirmed when the remaining Season 2 episodes will be broadcast.

New Interview With Flashpoint Creators:

Stephanie Morgenstern and Mark Ellis were featured guests at last month's Banff Worldwide Television Festival, and one lucky, blogging, screenwriter, got to interview them through email, and sit in on their sessions! Alex Epstein, best known for his work on Canadian hits 15/Love, Bon Cop, Bad Cop, and Naked Josh posted a compilation of notes from their Master Class session, and questions which the two answered via e-mail. This is well worth the read for you budding screenwriters, and behind-the-scenes aficionados. There are also a few comments included from Christina Davis, Senior Vice President for Drama Series Development at CBS. There's a lot of detail about their inspiration for turning this into a series from a proposed movie-of-the-week, and bonus detail about a cop they met during the development of the series.

Tassie Cameron Moves on to Motherhood, and Copper

Tassie Cameron was not a star of Flashpoint, but she was the spark that led the writing table from the beginning until just recently. Last month, she flew to Los Angeles with her writing partner Ilana Frank to pitch a new cop show to network execs called Copper. This one's about rookie cops fresh out of the academy making their ways through their careers. ABC picked up 13 episodes, and this happened shortly after the series was greenlit by Canwest Global. As we speak, the show is being shot, as Tassie is expecting her first child! The cast includes Canadian favorites such as Missy Peregrym, and Greg Smith. Eric Johnson of Smallville and Melanie Nicholls King of Law and Order are also joining the cast! Congrats to Tassie - we will miss seeing your words on Flashpoint, but we wish you the best of luck on your new show and a happy, healthy and safe journey into motherhood!

New Enrico Colantoni Interview with German Newspaper!

The German portal dedicated to American Entertainment, Serienjunkies, just posted a phone interview with Enrico Colantoni promoting the series, which is about to make its debut on German TV network RTL2. Für eine deutsche Übersetzung, klicken Sie bitte hier. He talks about the show and it's Canadian identity, how it has opened the door for other Canadian shows on American networks, and his character. One of the coolest parts in the interview is on the second page where he suggests that the show's peaceful nature of negotiation is something that fits into the current US political zeitgeist. We also have to wonder if President Obama watches the show! The interviewer Christian Junklewitz also suggests that he sing a song for the show, but Enrico laughs away from it. And, Enrico talks about another role which is a little too hot for this blog. We still think a musical episode would make for great filler just once!

Hugh Dillon Working Double Duty!

When not working as a sniper and leader on Flashpoint, Hugh Dillon plays a detective on Durham County. There have been a few articles lately talking about Hugh's involvement with both series. He is also due to release his debut solo album later this fall through Warner Music Canada! We wonder if his song from the show, Lost at Sea will be included. The album will be called "Works Well With Others" and he describes it as "a little more Leonard Cohen and a little less Lemmy from Motorhead." Hugh's success on both sides of the border continues to grow in new directions!

BREAKING NEWS! Flashpoint Finally Coming to DVD in North America!

Finally, words Flashpoint fans in North America have been waiting for. We have gotten the occasional tease from Mark Ellis via Twitter. A few days ago, TVShowsOnDVD posted a release from CBS Paramount! On October 13th, Season 1 will be released, and it will run for 550 minutes. It is probably safe to say that all 13 episodes will be on this release and it will follow the broadcast order used internationally! Later they confirmed that this release is for the US only, and there is no word on what will be happening with a Canadian release (but, this release is much easier for Canadians to import should there be a worst-case scenario). They also posted a low-res cover of what might be the DVD cover (posted here). We still think the UK cover is the nicest of the releases so far! On another note, Amazon UK has some different promotional videos posted for that set. As always, we will keep you posted on any new details we learn about the releases!

Wednesday, July 15, 2009

BREAKING NEWS - Flashpoint to Repeat This Week

A CBS press release indicates a schedule change for Flashpoint this week, with a repeat of "Clean Hands."

From the release:
(The following episode of FLASHPOINT has been substituted for the one previously scheduled for July 17) – When the SRU moves a serial killer to a new facility, they discover the federal agent they're working with is secretly sabotaging the mission, on a rebroadcast of "FLASHPOINT," Friday, July 17
TV listings confirm that CBS will be airing "Clean Hands" this week. Castle is set to air on CTV at the same time.

Repeats are scheduled through August 7th for CBS and we've heard that new episodes of Flashpoint may be held until the middle of the fall season, but we are still searching for confirmation on that.

We will be sure to keep you updated when we know more about the schedule.

Flashpoint Fan Panel at Polaris

Polaris was this past weekend, this year hosted in Richmond Hill, Ontario (just north of Toronto). I attended the con and, since I announced the We Got the Solution blog at the Flashpoint panel, I'm providing a summary for those of you who couldn't make it.

For those that did make it, welcome to our blog! It was great chatting with some of you in person.

Here's the panel description from the program:

Flashpoint, where Toronto is itself

Description: If you haven't caught an episode of it yet, drop by and learn a bit about the characters in the series as well as the inspirations behind this Toronto-made police drama.
Panelists*: Deanna Toxopeus, Robin Marwick
*Unfortunately, programming is missing the name of one of the panelists. If anyone can supply her name, please list it in the comments and I'll add it.

Discussing the Primary Characters and the Show

This included snippets about the primary cast, some secondary characters, and some temporary characters. The fact that Donna (Jessica Steen) was made likable and felt like she could easily become a permanent addition to the cast was noted. As fans, we appreciate that even temporary characters are made to be likable and memorable.

In discussing elements that make the show unique, the focus was on the way that good versus evil is not black and white. We're often given reason to sympathize with or understand the motivations behind the supposed villain(s).

Everyone wanted to see more of Spike (Sergio Di Zio) and Lewis (Mark Taylor), so that we can learn more about their characters. We also discussed how the members of the SRU are normal people, not superheroes. This was made very clear when Greg's mentor, Sergeant Daniel Rangford, appeared in "Haunting the Barn."

The "I got the solution" catchphrase was mentioned as being more open to interpretation than saying outright that they have a kill shot, when the solution could be something else (or they could be using non-lethal ammo). There was speculation about whether or not Toronto's Emergency Task Force actually says something similar.

There was mention of Colantoni's former role as Keith Mars on Veronica Mars (If you're a fan of his character on Flashpoint, I definitely recommend checking out Veronica Mars). One of the panelists mentioned that Colantoni was initially unsure of taking the role of Sergeant Greg Parker when he heard about it, but was convinced by his brother to accept. Colantoni's character is very likable on the show and the panelists remarked that they really liked his gentle approach for negotiating as well as the technique to realistically relate to the subject to help calm them down.

Mentioning Amy Jo Johnson's previous role as the Pink Ranger was inevitable. An audience member said he thought it would be funny if they slipped and called her "Kimberly" in Flashpoint once, instead of Jules. The panelists found it refreshing that the character of Jules set the boundaries for her relationship with Sam, refusing to leave her position on the team.

The panelists also mentioned that Hugh Dillon has been pretty busy recently, working on Durham County and a new music album.

Filming in Toronto

The panelists and audience were in agreement that it's nice to see a show filmed as well as set in Toronto. Comments were made about recognizable locations as well as some edits made to directions in some of the on-the-road shots. Also, the amusement park in "The Perfect Family" was noted in the panel as being Canada's Wonderland.

Some comments were made about movies and series that are filmed in Toronto but supposedly set elsewhere. There were some chuckles about the CN tower appearing in the skyline of some "filmed in Toronto but set in a U.S. city" films.

Quite a few people indicated that they'd be interested in a set tour of some of the filming locations for Flashpoint, and it was suggested that perhaps next year a tour be organized of various film and television sets for shows filmed in Toronto. I'm sure a comparison of the sets for Flashpoint and Murdoch Mysteries would be interesting!

Auction Items

A set of Flashpoint items was a part of the charity auction at Polaris, with the proceeds going to Gilda's Club. The Flashpoint items up for auction included a copy of the pilot script signed by the cast and writers, a Flashpoint promotional poster signed by the four main cast members, and two Strategic Response Unit hats.

I've heard that the auction set went for $200 to the SRU cosplayer who attended the Flashpoint panel, but this is unconfirmed. Unfortunately I don't have any photos of the cosplayer, but he had a great costume.

Friday, July 10, 2009

Welcome to We Got The Solution!

Welcome Flashpoint fans from around the world! This blog has been in the works for a few months now and we're finally happy to bring it online! On our first blog, Moon Chase, we were praised by many (fans and other industry leaders alike) for our Flashpoint coverage. The only reason we began to follow it was because Moon Chase was dedicated to keeping up with anything and everything going on with Sailor Moon, and one of Flashpoint's co-creators, Stephanie Morgenstern, had a major role in the first two seasons of the show, playing the well loved superhero, Sailor Venus. This is why many of the posts will contain "moonieisms"! Once the show started to take off though, we quickly realized that this was one of the few opportunities Sailor Moon fans on both sides of the border could have to put a face to the voice, so we began to cover it more. And then we fell in love with the show's first episode, and the rest is history! Soon we had fans from around the world sending us details of how much they loved the show and what it was like in their own countries. Moon Chase soon became encompassed with Flashpoint posts (simply because the news was much easier to come by) and earlier this year the decision was made to start a Flashpoint blog and network it along with Moon Chase. So, even though today is the official launch date of We Got The Solution, you will see that our posts have been here since 2007. To learn a little more about our staff, click here! One of the great features we have added to this site is our ratings table, where we track how the show is doing in the US and Canada. This table will be updated each week with ratings as they come in from our sources listed below. We are also committed to posting episode summaries, and news about the show, cast, and crew! We hope that you enjoy this blog as much as we do putting it together!

Wednesday, July 1, 2009

Flashbits from Banff!

The Banff World Television Festival was held from June 7-10th of this year! And among the many special guest speakers at the event were none other than the co-creators of Flashpoint, Stephanie Morgenstern and Mark Ellis. At the festival, they held a one our session talking about their craft, and answering such burning questions like:

What was their secret of breaking into the US market when so many others have tried before and failed?

How do you make a Canadian series airing worldwide not look like it was made in Canada?

How much influence does CTV and CBS have on creative decisions, such as direction and casting?

Their appearances and experiences with the show were written about in the press!

¤Before it all started, the New York Times talked with Mark and Stephanie, along with Anne Marie La Traverse (Producer), Bill Mustos (Producer), and Nina Tassler (President of CBS). They spoke of how the show came to be, how it doesn't look Canadian, and how the American entertainment industry has shifted to allow more international fare to be broadcast. Flashpoint was a pioneer in letting Canadian TV get on US airwaves!

¤Days after the festival, posted an article talking about how the show was shaped at the writing table - instead of having a show runner, all of the writers and freelancers collaborate as a team. However, we disagree with their comment about their lack of experience. Stephanie Morgenstern has acted on various TV shows and wrote for two critically acclaimed short films, Remembrance and Curtains. The former even has a movie in the works. Mark Ellis was also a writer on Remembrance. While this may not seem like a lot, the fact that these two productions won many awards speaks volumes that they had some pretty good skills to start with! Plus, the show spent four years in development (watch the W5 special for more). That's more than many shows on the air today can say!

¤Sometime after the festival , the Calgary Sun posted an article wherein Mark and Stephanie talked about some of the challenges to stay true to Canada within the episodes, despite limitations put on by CBS.