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Amazon Studios in Canada hunts for adventure reality series, true crime

CONTENT CANADA: Amazon Studios in Canada is on the hunt for true crime and competition adventure series as it expands its local production slate, according to head of local originals, Canada, Brent Haynes.

Brent Haynes

Speaking at spotlight session in Toronto, the exec said that it is looking to dip its toe into the adventure reality space and would be open to something “in the vein” of Alone.

Haynes said that, based on some research conducted by Amazon Studios, the company had learned that Canadians weren’t interested in watching American unscripted shows.

“[Our Canadian audience] wants stuff that they feel is attainable to their life and how they see the world, so we would love to find an adventure show where people can put themselves in that show and go ‘oh what would I do in that situation?’” said Haynes.

He added that true crime was “always a winner” on the Canadian version of Prime Video and his team is looking for more.

In addition, on the back of the documentary Mr Dressup, which celebrates the life and work of popular Canadian TV personality Ernie Coombs (aka Mr Dressup), Haynes is on the hunt for more documentary projects that examine influential Canadian figures.

Mr Dressup, produced by Marblemedia and Hawkeye Pictures for Prime Video in Canada, recently had its world premiere at the Toronto International Film Festival to strong reviews.

“We would like to see more docs on iconic Canadian figures. That’s really hard to do, because it has to be about Canadians that everybody knows and have touched everybody. But if you’ve seen that doc, there’s not a dry eye in the house. It was quite the experience.”

Yesterday, Prime Video in Canada partnered with Reelworld Screen Institute on a new training programming for producers and writers. The programmer, called the Reelworld Training Lab, will provide training and skills development opportunities to racially diverse and Indigenous talent in Canada.

The programme is designed to expand Canada’s production talent pool, with the participants in the initiative also supporting Amazon Studios’ projects in Canada.

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