France’s Canal Plus picks up Cardinal

The Sienna Films and eOne drama has proved a hot commodity in European markets, having already sold to numerous broadcasters, including the U.K.'s BBC.
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Canal+ is the latest European broadcaster to take a shine to Sienna Films and eOne’s TV drama Cardinal.

The French network acquired the television rights to season one (6 x 60 minutes) of the CTV series starring Billy Campbell (The Killing) and Karinne Vanasse (Revenge). The deal was brokered by Toby Melling, VP sales, eOne Television International.

The sale comes on the heels of pickups by BBC Four (U.K.) C More (Scandinavia) and Calle 13 (Spain) ahead of next week’s MIPTV.

Last month Bell Media announced it had greenlit a further two seasons (both 6 x 60 minutes) of Cardinal, with both scheduled to shoot in Northern Ontario this year. The 12-episode order was made after Cardinal pulled in an average audience (2+) of 1.3 million for its premiere episode. The season went on to average more than one million viewers per episode, according to Bell Media’s CTV. In French Canada, the show airs on Super Ecran.

Aubrey Nealon served as showrunner on season one, with Sarah Dodd (Motive) and Patrick Tarr (Saving Hope) tapped to showrun seasons two and three, respectively.

The series, based on author Giles Blunt’s series of novels John Cardinal Mysteries, is produced with the financial participation of the Northern Ontario Heritage Fund Corporation, CMF and the Cogeco Program Development Fund, and with the assistance of the Ontario Film and Television Tax Credit and the Canadian Film or Video Production Tax Credit. eOne handles the international rights.