In Brief: Less Bland docuseries gets premiere date

Plus: Vancouver film fest unveils its 2017 BC Spotlight film and a new variety of tulip is named in honour of Canada copro Tulipani.

grape escapes - chekIndie channel Chek preps Less Bland docuseries

Food and travel docuseries The Wine Guys: Grape Escapes (pictured) is set for a Sept. 14  premiere on Victoria, B.C.-based independent station, CHEK. Produced by the prodco Less Bland Productions, the project follows a trio of wine importers (Michael Podbere, Chuck Katan, and Charlie Arturaola) as they travel the world finding new wines to bring to the North American market. Season one of the half-hour series was filmed in France and Spain. Melbourne, Australia-based Looking Glass International is handling global sales on the project, which is directed by Leslie D. Bland. Victoria, B.C.-based Less Bland’s other TV credits include the comedy series She Kills Me (APTN) and the feature doc Gone South: How Canada Invented Hollywood (Super Channel).

VIFF names its BC Spotlight film

The Vancouver International Film Festival (VIFF) has named Melanie Wood’s Shut Up and Say Something as its BC Spotlight film for 2017. The feature-length doc about spoken word artist Shane Koyczan will screen at the BC Spotlight Awards Gala on Saturday, Oct. 7. In addition, the Vancouver festival also announced Todd Haynes’ Wonderstruck (U.S.), a time-travelling feature about two deaf boys, will make its Canadian premiere in the fest’s closing night gala. VIFF runs from Sept. 28 to Oct. 13.

New variety of tulip to be named in honour of Canada copro

A new variety of tulips has been named in honour of the Netherlands/Canada/Italy coproduction Tulipani - Love, Honour and a BicycleThe red carpet for the Mike Van Diem-directed feature, which had its world premiere on Saturday, Sept. 10 at TIFF ’17, was decorated with 4,500 of the new variety of tulip, which has been named Tulipani. The feature is an official Netherlands/Canada treaty copro produced by FATT Productions (Netherlands) and Don Carmody Television (DCTV). At the same time it is also a bi-lateral Netherlands/Italy treaty copro between FATT, Draka Productions (Italy) and Stemo Productions (Italy). The film tells the story of a Dutch farmer who vows he will never have wet feet again after he loses his farm to the 1953 North Sea flood in Holland. In Canada, the film is being distributed by A71 Entertainment. U.S. and international sales are being handled by Atlas International Film, while September Film is handling Benelux.