TORONTO , Oct. 11, 2018 – Shaftesbury, Pope Productions, and Citytv announced today that production has begun on new drama series REX (wt). Centred on the partnership between a police detective and his hardworking dog, REX is a procedural drama with a twist. Starring John Reardon (Van Helsing, Continuum), Mayko Nguyen (Killjoys, Fahrenheit 451), and Enrico Colantoni (Bad Blood, Flashpoint), the eight-episode, 60-minute series is based on the long-running, international hit series Rex, a Cop’s Best Friend. Executive produced by Christina Jennings, Scott Garvie, and Paul Pope, the series has begun shooting in St. John’s, Newfoundland and will continue through December 2018.
Set in St. John’s, Newfoundland, REX is an action-packed police procedural dramafocused on the partnership between a dedicated detective and his extraordinary former K9 dog. Rex and Charlie are a detective team that combine their individual skills to solve the most puzzling crimes. This is the first English-language adaptation of the highly successful European format that has aired in 125 countries around the world for 18 seasons.
“Citytv is proud to add Rex to our robust slate of original series,” said Nataline Rodrigues, Director of Original Programming, Rogers Media. “Now with dramas in production from coast to coast, we are proud to be truly reflective of our unique viewers across the country with premium Canadian content that we think will connect with audiences at home and abroad.”
Starring John Reardon as Detective Charlie Hudson, Rex’s partner; Mayko Nguyen as chief of forensics Sarah Truong; Enrico Colantoni as Superintendent Joseph De Luca; and Diesel (a Canadian Kennel Club Grand Champion) as Rex.
“We have wanted to make Rex for a number of years and are overjoyed to now be making this with our partners Rogers Media, Pope Productions, and Beta Film, and in beautiful Newfoundland,” said Christina Jennings, Executive Producer,REX / Chairman & CEO, Shaftesbury. “The original series was a ratings hit around the world and we think Canadian and international audiences will delight in the antics of Charlie and Rex.”
“Rex is part of our initiative to enlarge our involvement of English language productions. We are thrilled to partner with Shaftesbury, Pope Productions, and Rogers Media, sharing the same vision for this great contemporary re-imagination and the potential for a new addition to this successful franchise. Rex has a cult following and as long-established brand it delivers a unique and steady prime-time success throughout Europe. We are convinced that we can build on the extensive fan-base and enlarge its footprint internationally, especially in North America,” said Oliver Bachert, Beta Film EVP International Sales and Acquisitions.
Shaftesbury and Pope Productions Ltd. produces REX in association with Citytv, a division of Rogers Media, and Beta Film GmbH. Beta Film GmbH holds worldwide distribution rights. Produced with the participation of the Newfoundlandand Labrador Film Development Corporation, the Ontario Film and Television Tax Credit, the Canadian Film or Video Production Tax Credit and the Rogers Documentary and Cable Network Fund.
“Pope Productions is thrilled to partner with Shaftesbury along with Canadian broadcaster Citytv and international distributor Beta Film to bring the production of REX to Newfoundland and Labrador. We’ve assembled a stellar team and are looking forward to filming throughout St. John’s. This city is a great place to shoot. The crews here are of the highest calibre, our post-production house NIFCO boasts state-of-the-art technology, the scenery is unbeatable, and our hospitality is legendary. We’re very grateful for support from municipal, provincial and federal governments, who recognize the significant economic and cultural contribution the film and television industry makes to our community,” said Paul Pope, Executive Producer, REX / Principal, Pope Productions
REX is executive produced by Christina Jennings, Scott Garvie, Paul Pope, Ken Cuperus, and Avrum Jacobson, followed by Laura Harbin as Supervising Producer, Julie Lacey as Producer, and Lisa Porter as Associate Producer. Friedemann Goez and Oliver Bachert are Executive Producers from Beta Film GmbH. Episodes are written by Showrunners Ken Cuperus, Paul Aitken, John Callaghan, Jessie Gabe, Avrum Jacobson, Simon McNabb, and Celeste Parr. Episodes are directed by Felipe Rodriguez, Alison Reid, and John Vatcher. From Rogers Media, Nataline Rodrigues, Director of Original Programming, is Executive Producer, Hayden Mindell is Vice President of Television Programming & Content, and Colette Watson is Senior Vice President of TV & Broadcast Operations.
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Citytv offers viewers intensely-local, urban-oriented, and culturally-diverse content through its seven television stations inToronto, Vancouver, Calgary, Edmonton, Saskatchewan, Winnipeg, and Montreal, plus the award-winning Citytv Video app. A distinct alternative to other conventional television stations, Citytv delivers an entertaining mix of Canadian and acquired prime-time programming, news, and local-interactive formats with influential brands such as Cityline, CityNews, and Breakfast Television. Citytv is part of Rogers Media, which is a subsidiary of Rogers Communications Inc. (TSX, NYSE: RCI). Visit Citytv.com.
Shaftesbury is an award-winning creator and producer of original content for television, film, digital, and brands. Shaftesbury’s current slate includes 12 seasons of Murdoch Mysteries for CBC, UKTV, and ITV STUDIOS Global Entertainment, two seasons of detective drama Frankie Drake Mysteries for CBC and UKTV, and three seasons of critically acclaimed thriller series Slasher for Netflix. Shaftesbury’s digital arm produces original digital, convergent, and branded entertainment projects including the global phenomenon and MIPTV Brand Content of the Year award winner Carmilla, scripted comedy Upstairs Amy for Walmart and Interac®, and supernatural drama Inhuman Condition. Shaftesbury’s branded entertainment division drives profitable engagement with millennials using scripted series, turning brands into executive producers. Recent brand partners include Walmart, Interac, U by Kotex®, and RBC.
About Pope Productions:
Pope Productions is a St. John’s based media production company, helmed by producer Paul Pope. Recent features and MOWs include the CBC comedy A Christmas Fury and festival favourites Hunting Pignut, Beat Down and Grown Up Movie Star, which scored a Special Jury Prize at Sundance for Tatiana Maslany. Documentaries include It’s Mental,Heavy Weather Presents, the multi award winning My Left Breast, Legends and Lore of the North Atlantic and Going the Distance. From the historical dramatic miniseries Above and Beyond, to the classic comedy Rare Birds and the outrageous series Drunk and on Drugs:The Happy Funtime Hour, Pope’s rich repertoire reflects its deep commitment to a vibrant production industry both in Newfoundland and nationally.
About Beta Film:
Beta Film based in Munich/Germany is one of Europe’s leading distributors of licenses rights for TV, HV, new media and theatrical with a portfolio of over 15.000 hours of program and established itself as a producer and co-producer of national and international high end drama. While the Beta Cinema portfolio comprises many Academy Award-nominated and -winning films, Kineos is responsible for licensing German-language rights to 12,000 titles. In the classical-music domain, Unitel is the global leader in the production of audiovisual music recordings, with a film stock of around 1,500 productions. The corporate group also has stakes in several national and international production companies as well as special interest channels. Founded in 1959, Beta Film has been part of Jan Mojto’s company group since 2004.