There are worse dilemmas for a television creator.
But Ron E. Scott’s previous project, the Edmonton-shot TV drama Blackstone, was so dark and singular that it’s hard to imagine how he might top it with a followup. The series ran for five seasons on Showcase and APTN, offering an unflinching and often harrowing look at the corruption, addiction and violence that plagued a fictional Alberta First Nations reserve.
While it may be a stretch to suggest his new crime drama Tribal, which began filming last week on the Tsuu T’ina First Nation outside of Calgary, finds him lightening up, he will say that it has a different tone than his former series.
“It’s not in the same kind of vein as Blackstone,” says Scott, who is writer, producer and showrunner of the new series. “It’s a little more accessible, less confrontational, less aggressive in its narrative. That was how we shaped the show. At the same time, it does have a social relevance and definitely a commentary that is definitely interesting in our day and age.”