Canadian Media Industries Research Project Portal

Canadian Media Industries Timeline: 2000 to 2007


2000 | 2001 | 2002 | 2003 | 2004 | 2005 | 2006 | 2007


2000

Corus Entertainment of Toronto, owners of YTV and part owners of Teletoon, purchase Nelvana for C$530 million.

Alliance Atlantis Communications acquires Edmonton, Alberta-based documentary house Great North Productions.

January: French language specialty networks Series+ and Historia launch. Alliance Atlantis Communications owns 50% of both networks.

February 7: Rogers Communications announces plans to acquire Groupe Vidéotron Ltée in a C$6 billion stock deal. The merger combines the two Canadian companies' cable and fiber optic networks.

February 8: The British Columbia government announces that the province's film and television industry earned more than C$1 billion in 1999, ranking the province third in North America after Los Angeles and New York.

February 15: Thomson Corporation announces that it has placed all but one of its 130 newspapers up for sale in order to move the company to electronic content.

March: Cinar founders, Ronald Weinberg and Micheline Charest are forced to resign from the company.

July 31: Hollinger CEO Conrad Black announces plans to sell most of his Canadian newspapers to CanWest Global in a C$3.5 billion deal.

October: Food Network Canada, the Canadian equivalent of the U.S.-based Food Network is launched.

October 6: The pilot episode of the Alliance Atlantis Communications' co-produced television series CSI: Crime Scene Investigation airs on CBS in the United States.

December: The CRTC approves the purchase of the CTV network by Canadian telephone company BCE Inc.

FY 2000: Alliance Atlantis Communications acquires a 48% equity interest in specialty network Headline Sports

2001

February: Alliance Atlantis Communications purchases UK-based factual programming producer Café Productions.

June: The CRTC rules that cable companies can buy pay-TV and specialty-TV services.

June 26: Alliance Atlantis Communications announces the intended launch of seven digital specialty channels in fall 2001. The channels to be launched include: Showcase Diva, Showcase Action, The Independent Film Channel Canada (subject to CRTC approval), Discovery Health Channel Canada, National Geographic Channel, BBC Canada, and BBC Kids.

FY 2001: Alliance Atlantis Communications partners with German-based Kinowelt Medien AG to launch United Kingdom-based motion picture distributor Momentum Pictures.

The CRTC awards Alliance Atlantis Communications with 34 new digital specialty channels.

Fall: Digital television channels are introduced in Canada.

The Canada Feature Film Fund is established.

Alliance Atlantis Communications announces the acquisition of Salter Street Films.

2002

February 6: Toronto mayor Mel Lastman on behalf of the City of Toronto, and James Villeneuve, Chair of the Toronto Economic Development Corporation, announce the creation of Canada's largest film and television production facility, to be built on Toronto's waterfront land.

April 2: The Minister of Canadian Heritage, the Honourable Sheila Copps, announces a review of the definition of Canadian content as it applies to film and television production.

May 9: The pilot episode of Alliance Atlantis Communications' co-produced CSI spin-off CSI: Miami airs on CBS in the United States.

2003

January: Robert Lantos, founder and former chairman-CEO of Alliance Communications acquires a 50% stake in North American distributor ThinkFilm. Lantos will also become chairman of the company. Until this point, Lantos has been prevented from serving as a film executive owing to a non-competition clause in his Alliance Atlantis departure agreement in 1998.

May 25: Dramatic Choices: A Report on Canadian English-language Drama is released.

October: The Movie Distribution Income Fund is launched.

December: Alliance Atlantis Communications announces it will shut down Salter Street Films as well as offices in Vancouver, British Columbia; Edmonton, Alberta, and London, England. The Company also announces that “with few exceptions,” it will cease film and television production activities.

December 10: Alliance Atlantis Communications announces it is cutting its entertainment group in half. The move means a loss of 70 of the 150 people working in the division, including top executives Seaton McLean and Peter Sussman. The company also is reviewing the “dollars and cents of its production efforts.”

2004

February 11: Alliance Atlantis Communications announces that Mark Rubinstein, President and Chief Operating Officer of its broadcast arm, "will leave the firm when his contract ends this month."

May 17: The pilot episode of a second Alliance Atlantis Communications co-produced CSI spin-off, CSI: NY, is broadcast on CBS in the United States.

June 4: Alliance Atlantis Communications reports major losses in financial charges due to its exit from film and television production.

June 7: Toronto, Ontario-based post-production company Magnetic North purchases rival Casablanca from Alliance Atlantis Communications. The newly formed company will be called Casablanca Magnetic North.

September 3: Alliance Atlantis Communications launches English language specialty channel Fine Living . The channel is owned in partnership with U.S.-based Scripps Networks.

September 22: Alliance Atlantis Communications co-produced television series, CSI: NY, premieres on CBS in the United States and CTV in Canada.

November 16: Alliance Atlantis Communications discloses that a cost accounting error on its CSI television will reduce the company's operating earnings this year by C$25.2 million (US$21 million).

Alliance Atlantis Communications sells Halifax, Nova Scotia post-production firm Salter Street Digital to a group led by Rob Power. The newly purchased company will be renamed PowerPost Production.

2005

2006

July 19: Veteran Alliance Atlantis Communications executive, Victor Loewy, quits as chairman of Movie Distribution Income Fund, after the Fund's board of directors dismissed CEO Patrice Théroux and general counsel Paul Laberge.

September 14: Variety and other media outlets report that Victor Loewy is in discussions to return as a top executive at Motion Picture Distribution.

December 21: Alliance Atlantis Communications introduces two High-Definition television (HDTV) servicesNational Geographic Channel HD and Showcase HD in Canada.

2007

January: Alliance Atlantis Communications is sold to CanWest Global Communications.

June 29: The Task Force on the Canadian Television Fund publishes its report. The report's recommendations include to "improve the funding of Canadian programs, increase the effectiveness and efficiency of the CTF, and enhance the participation of broadcasting distributors, such as cable and satellite companies, in the CTF" (CRTC, "CRTC to release decision on the Canadian Television Fund before the end of December" [news release], September 14, 2007).

August 28: The Academy of Canadian Cinema & Television announces its 2007 Gemini Awards nominations. Slings & Arrows and ReGenesis receive the most nominations--14 and 12 respectively.

September: At the CRTC's request, CanWest MediaWorks has created a C$10.5-million CanWest Alberta Fund to boost production in the province.

September 13: Nova Scotia Premier Rodney MacDonald announces an increase in the provincial tax credit, from 35% to 50%.

September 14: The CRTC announces that it will issue its decision on the Canadian Television Fund (CTF) before the end of December 2007. The decision was originally to be announced on September 15 2007 but was delayed "due to the high level of interest generated by the process and the complexity of the issues" (CRTC, "CRTC to release decision on the Canadian Television Fund before the end of December" [news release], September 14, 2007).

October 28: The Gemini Awards main gala will be held in Regina Saskatchewan.

 


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