This year’s Leo Awards — honouring the best of BC-made film and television — boasts six nominees in the Best Dramatic Series category: CTV’s Vancouver whydunit Motive leads with 21 nominations; The CW’s breakout super hero hit The Flash has 8 nominations; Lifetime’s cancelled Witches of East End has 6 nominations; Showcase’s acclaimed time-wimey Vancouver series Continuum has 5 nominations; Alberta-shot Blackstone has 5 nominations; and Bravo’s Montreal-filmed 19-2 has 3 nominations.
Saturday, June 6th: Celebration Awards Ceremony One at Westin Bayshore.
Saturday, June 13th: Celebration Awards Ceremony Two at Hotel Vancouver.
Sunday, June 14th: Gala Awards Ceremony at Hotel Vancouver.
Motive, which leads the Leo Awards with 21 nominations, is unusual for two reasons: Vancouver plays itself not somewhere else and Motive is a whydunit not a whodunit. At the top of each episode, we learn who The Killer and The Victim are and then follow along with detectives Angie Flynn (Kristin Lehman) and Oscar Vega (Louis Ferreira) as they solve the murder and uncover the reasons behind it. In its second season, Motive averaged more than one million viewers an episode in Canada. Credit goes to the unique format, the lead actors, the choice to make “ordinary people” the killers and victims (often played by BC actors) instead of gang leaders or thugs and the visual style.
Nominations: Kristin Lehman and Louis Ferreira for lead performances; Brendan Penny for supporting performance; Ben Cotton, Callum Keith Rennie, Alexia Fast, Brooke Nevin and Enuka Okuma for guest performances; David Frazee and Mairzee Almas for directing; Paul Redford, Katherine Collins and Sarah Dodd for screenwriting; Mathias Herndl for cinematography; Lisa Binkley for picture editing; Ross Dempster for production design; and Maureen Webb for casting.
American super hero series The Flash had a brilliant first season, thanks in no small part to its Vancouver crew. Geek charming Barry Allen (Grant Gustin) is the Central City assistant police forensics investigator who becomes super fast, aka the Flash, after a seemingly freak explosion at S.T.A.R. labs. The scarlet speedster is haunted by the murder of his mother by a man in a yellow suit — the Reverse Flash — who turns out to be time-travelling Eobard Thawne in the guise of S.T.A.R. labs founder Harrison Wells. The two face off in the season finale, with the Reverse Flash seemingly vanquished.
Nominations: Arrow’s Emily Bett Rickards for guest performance, Glen Winter for directing; C. Kim Miles for cinematography (Man in the Yellow Suit); Armen Kevorkian and team for VFX (Going Rogue); Tyler Bishop Warren for production design (Man in Yellow suit).
Witches of East End:
Inspired by the Melissa de la Cruz novel, the American series Witches of East End told the story of the Beauchamp family of witches — mother Joanna (Julia Ormond) and daughters Freya (Jenna Dewan Tatum) and Ingrid (Rachel Boston) — and their long entanglement with the Dash brothers in a small seaside town. Lifetime cancelled the supernatural series last year after two seasons.
Not enough love in the world for the amazing cast, crew, writers and fans of #WitchesofEastEnd. This has been an incredible journey! I ❤️ U
— Jenna Dewan Tatum (@jennaldewan) November 5, 2014
Nominations: Mathias Herndl for cinematography; WOEE team for VFX; Rachel O’Toole for production design; Susan De Laval for costume design, Scott Ateah, Paul Wu for stunt coordination.
Winner of two consecutive Leos for Best Dramatic Series, Vancouver’s own timey-wimey Continuum earned five nominations for its timeline-shifting third season. Created by Simon Barry, Continuum’s ripped-from-the-news series is about a future police officer Kiera Cameron (Rachel Nichols) who gets swept up in an escape from 2077 by “terrorists” Liber8 who set out to change the future from the present by targeting the corporations that will come to rule the world. Always the good soldier in the future, Kiera adjusted her moral compass in the third season and came to the conclusion that her beloved future is not a great future at all and therefore not worth protecting. Continuum just wrapped filming of its fourth and final season in Vancouver.
Nominations: Creator Simon Barry for directing, Mike Banas for picture editing; Kimani Ray Smith for stunt coordination (two nominations).
From Ron E. Scott, Blackstone tells the stories of a fictional First Nations reserve in Alberta.
Nominations: Steven Cree Molison and Carmen Moore for lead performances.
19-2 is a Canadian crime drama about Montreal beat cops Nick Barron (Adrian Holmes) and Ben Chartier (Jared Keeso).
Nominations: Jared Keeso for lead performance.
Other big nominees — but not for Best Dramatic Series — are CBC’s Langley-shot women’s western Strange Empire with 10 nominations; AMC’s Calgary-shot Hell on Wheels with 5 nominations, The CW’s The 100 with 5 nominations; Hallmark’s Canadian western When Calls the Heart with 4 nominations; The CW’s dark hero series Arrow with 3 nominations; The CW dramedy iZombie with 2 nominations; ABC’s modern fairy tale series Once Upon a Time with 2 nominations; DirecTV’s crime drama Rogue with 2 nominations and CBC’s Arctic Air and Ascension, FOX’s Backstrom, FX’s Fargo, ABC’s Once Upon a Time in Wonderland, Global’s Remedy, The CW’s Supernatural and AMC’s The Killing with one nomination each.