To Make It In America, You Have To Be About America

News broke earlier this week that a Canadian show called The L.A Complex (SO MELROSE PLACE?) has been sold to The CW and will air later this spring on the American network. The show currently airs on MuchMusic up here and is being produced by CTV and also stars a famous Canadian face, former Degrassi-er Cassie Steele.

The show centers around a group of Canadian actors trying to make it big in L.A. It has a good team behind it and it might do well in the states, and I hope it does because I want more Canadian products to sell, but a lot of things bother me about this. The main issue I have with it is the title. Do you think they would ever make or buy a show titled, “The Toronto Complex” about a group of Americans who made their way to Toronto, trying to do something different with their lives, needing a break from NYC or L.A and are trying to find themselves in the cold wonders of Ontario? Ya, no. Never. That would never happen. Because Canada does not sell.

If this show was not set in L.A and did not center around Canadians trying to make it big in America, then this would not be news. At least this is how I feel. I might be a little cynical about this but as a Canadian who is trying to make things happen for himself, I have a lot of issues with how we are represented and how our art industry is a failure to us. I recently watched the Canadian movie One Week. It’s probably one of the more famous Canadian films to be made in recent memory. It’s a nice, little movie. And then that’s it. What was the last, Great Canadian film you watched? Take your time.

There is so much talent in Canada. SO MUCH TALENT. But, we suffocate our talent. All of our network programming is American. And if it is Canadian, it’s usually subpar. Degrassi is a huge hit… in the States. It’s actually bigger in America than in its own country. We have the potential to make great movies, television shows and musicians but everything is so subpar and even if it is good, it knows well enough to go over to America then to stay here. So who is the problem? It’s us.

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