The Listener goes silent after five seasons

The last episode of the Shaftesbury-produced series will air on CTV on Aug. 18.
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After 65 episodes and five seasons, Shaftesbury’s The Listener, produced in association with CTV and Fox International Channels, will come to an end on Aug. 18, CTV announced Wednesday.

“Sixty-five episodes is what you start out hoping for,” Christina Jennings, chairman and CEO with Shaftesbury, told Playback Daily. “We had our sights on 65 episodes and five seasons, and we got there.”

The series was greenlit by CTV in 2007, and premiered on Space and CTV on June 3, 2009. The Listener debuted at #1 in its 10 p.m. timeslot and drew an audience of 1.1 million viewers, with a full-season average of 1 million viewers, according to BBM Canada data provided by Bell Media. The remainder of the series averaged about 1.1 million viewers overall. Latest ratings information for the Aug. 4 episode of The Listener was 1.53 million, not including PVR views, which represented a season high for the series, according to Jennings.

The series also has an international presence, and was licensed in over 120 markets, including the ION Network in the U.S., several European countries such as Italy, Spain and the U.K., and in Japan and Korea.

Despite the success of the series, Shaftesbury had somewhat anticipated The Listener might end after it hit a five-season, 65-episode benchmark, said Jennings, and tried to wrap up loose ends in the latest season.

“We did craft the end of the fifth season so that it would feel satisfying,” Jennings said.

While The Listener‘s run is coming to an end, Shaftesbury is currently working CTV to develop two new series. Smoke and Mirrors, a project that came out of Bell Media’s Writers Only Drama Development program, is in the later stages of development, Jennings said. Shaftesbury and CTV are also developing Old City Hall, a drama series based on a number of novels from Robert Rotenberg that follows the stories of cops and law in Toronto.

“Because we have some other shows in development with them, this just felt like the right time to do it,” Jennings said of wrapping The Listener.

The Listener is broadcast by Fox International Channels internationally, and on CTV and Bravo in Canada. The series is executive produced by Christina Jennings, Scott Garvie, Craig Olejnik and Peter Mohan, who also serves as showrunner. Tina Grewal is a producer on the series, with Sharon Tal Yguado serving as executive producer for Fox International Channels. The series is distributed by Shine International.