The cuts keep coming at CBC.
The public broadcaster has cancelled its northern drama Arctic Air and mental-health crime series Cracked — the latest programs to fall off the schedule after recent announcements about the impending end of George Stroumboulopoulos Tonight and The Ron James Show.
Cracked star David Sutcliffe bemoaned the demise of his cop drama on Twitter this week saying he was proud of the show and “sad to see it go.”
Meanwhile, Arctic Air star Pascale Hutton tweeted “a huge thank you to the amazing cast and crew” on her series.
The cuts follow CBC’s loss of lucrative NHL broadcast rights to Rogers. Hockey revenue has traditionally subsidized scripted programs and provided a high-profile platform to promote homegrown fare.
A sub-licensing deal will allow Hockey Night in Canada to continue airing on CBC, but under Rogers control beginning this fall. The private broadcaster has said it plans to use the HNIC brand on networks including City, Sportsnet, Sportsnet One, Sportsnet 360 and FX Canada.
Cracked follows a team of police investigators and mental health professionals who investigate incidents that straddle justice and psychological issues.
It’s currently airing its second season on CBC-TV.
“Proud of what we accomplished, sad to see it go. Thanks to all who watched and supported,” said Sutcliffe, who uses the Twitter handle @SutcliffeDavid.
Arctic Air stars Adam Beach as a cocky pilot who runs a small northern airline and Hutton as a headstrong pilot. Its currently airing its third season.
“It’s official ArcticAir is cancelled,” tweeted Hutton, who uses the Twitter handle @HuttonPascale.
A CBC spokesperson was not immediately available for comment.
The programming shakeup fuels ongoing questions about the future of CBC as several high-profile personalities prepare to reduce their involvement with the network.
Last week, original Dragons’ Den judge Kevin O’Leary said he was leaving the popular reality series to devote more time to his stint on the U.S. version Shark Tank.
CBC says the outspoken mogul will continue appearing on the current affairs show the Lang and O’Leary Exchange, but some critics nevertheless saw his departure as another blow to the beleaguered network’s profile.
The Rogers hockey deal — secured in November for $5.2-billion — will be bolstered by on-air appearances by veteran CBC sports anchor Ron MacLean, who will co-host Coach’s Corner with fan favourite Don Cherry and appear on a new Sunday night telecast, Hometown Hockey Community Celebration on City.
MacLean has said the Sunday series would preclude him from returning to any future seasons of CBC’s ice dancing competition Battle of the Blades.
That’s not to say CBC doesn’t have star-powered plans in the works.
It has ordered a new sitcom called Schitt’s Creek starring SCTV alums Eugene Levy and Catherine O’Hara.
It is also touting a new season of Dragons’ Den that will feature fresh judges Michael Wekerle and Vikram Vij to replace O’Leary and departing Internet mogul Bruce Croxon.
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