By Sahil Patel
Canadian TV network CTV has picked up the rights to stream the “Veronica Mars” digital spinoff on CTV Extend, its ad-supported hub for original digital video programming.
Called “Play It Again, Dick,” the digital series stars Ryan Hansen from “Veronica Mars” as himself, as he begs and pleads his former show castmates and friends to get his character, Dick Casablancas, his own spin-off show.
Co-written and executive produced by “Veronica Mars” creator Rob Thomas, and produced by Warner Bros., “Play It Again, Dick” was ordered to series by CW Seed in the US. The show will debut in both countries later this year.
The pick-up is part of CTV’s broader strategy to increasingly commission and acquire original digital content for CTV Extend, which it launched in April.
“After the successful launch of CTV Extend, we are committed to building our momentum by aggressively acquiring, commissioning, and producing the most engaging and compelling content for our viewers and our advertising partners,” said Mike Cosentino, SVP of programming for CTV Networks, in a statement.
In addition to the “Veronica Mars” spinoff, CTV unveiled three other shows it plans to exclusively offer via CTV Extend in the coming months.
“The Listener: The Toby Logan Files” is a companion piece to the fifth season of CTV’s network drama “The Listener.” The series centers on a detective who’s interrogating key people to learn more about the main character of “The Listener.” Produced by Smokebomb Entertainment, the digital division of producer Shaftesbury, and premiering this week, “The Toby Logan Files” will run for six episodes (four minutes each) through June 16.
“Guidestones: Sunflower Noir” is a follow-up to the Emmy-winning conspiracy-thriller “Guidestones.” The globe-spanning noir follows a woman who’s on the run from on organization that’s bent on culling the human population by any means necessary. Starring Sandy Rai and Trevor Shale (“Degrassi: The Next Generation”) and produced by iThentic/3’oclock.tv in association with Bell Media, the Independent Production Fund, the Ontario Media Development Corporation, and the Canada Media Fund, all 18 episodes of the show will be available beginning July 15.
“Joke or Choke” is a new stand-up comedy competition commissioned exclusively for CTV Extend. From executive producers Howie Mandel, John Brunton, and Barbara Bowlby, the 30-minute laugher will pit four Canadian comics against each other in an elimination battle. Producers include Insight Production Company and HDI Productions in association with Bell Media.
These four shows join 11 others that are already available on CTV Extend, including Smokebomb’s “Backpackers,” Fox Digital Studios’ “Wolfpack of Reseda,” and CTV spin-offs including “Arrow: Blood Rush” and “Saving Hope: Last Call.”