Vanessa Morgan And Giacomo Gianniotti To Star In New CBC Original Crime-Solving Drama Wild Cards

Production is currently underway in Vancouver, BC

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October 12, 2023 – With production currently underway in Vancouver, CBC today announced casting for the new original drama, WILD CARDS (10X60), premiering winter 2024 on CBC Gem and CBC TV. Created by Michael Konyves (Bad Blood, Barney’s Version, The Last Knights), the crime-solving procedural with a comedic twist stars Vanessa Morgan (Riverdale) and Giacomo Gianniotti (Grey’s Anatomy, Reign, From Scratch).

WILD CARDS follows the unlikely duo of a gruff, sardonic cop and a spirited, clever con woman. Ellis (Gianniotti), a demoted detective, has unfortunately spent the last year on the maritime unit, while Max (Morgan) has been living a transient life elaborately scamming everyone she meets. But when Max gets arrested and ends up helping Ellis solve a local crime, the two are offered the opportunity to redeem themselves, with Ellis going back to detective and Max staying out of jail. The catch? They have to work together, with each using their unique skills to solve crimes. For Ellis, that means hard-boiled shoe leather police work; for Max, it means accents, schemes and generally befriending everyone in sight, while driving Ellis absolutely nuts. Against the backdrop of beautiful Vancouver — with all its unique, charming, and even contradictory neighbourhoods and subcultures — the two will have to learn what it means to trust another person and maybe actually become partners.

“Vanessa and Giacomo’s exceptional talent, charm and on-screen chemistry promise to deliver a fresh dynamic to the crime procedural genre with Wild Cards,” said Trish Williams, Executive Director, Scripted Content, CBC. “We’re excited to welcome these two proud Canadians back to Canada and can’t wait to see them bring this unique and entertaining series to life with Michael and his talented creative team.”

WILD CARDS is currently filming in Vancouver until late fall under the jurisdiction of ACTRA and the WGC in Canada.

Created by Michael Konyves, WILD CARDS is an original series from Blink49 Studios, Front Street Pictures and Piller/Segan in association with CBC in Canada and The CW Network in the US. Executive producers include Konyves, pilot director James Genn, Shawn Piller, Lloyd Segan, and writers Alexandra Zarowny, James Thorpe, Noelle Carbone and Morwyn Brebner. WILD CARDS is produced by Charles Cooper and Virginia Rankin, and on behalf of Blink49 Studios, overseen by Executive Vice President of Global Scripted Carolyn Newman and Manager of Scripted Television Alix Steerman. For CBC, Sally Catto is General Manager, Entertainment, Factual & Sports; Trish Williams is Executive Director, Scripted Content; Sarah Adams is Director of Current Production, Drama; and Barbara Mamabolo is Executive in Charge of Production.

The licensing deal for WILD CARDS was brokered by Blink49 Studios, who controls the distribution rights in the U.S. and Canada. International distribution (outside of North America) is handled by FIFTH SEASON.

About CBC/Radio-Canada

CBC/Radio-Canada is Canada’s national public broadcaster. Through our mandate to inform, enlighten and entertain, we play a central role in strengthening Canadian culture. As Canada’s trusted news source, we offer a uniquely Canadian perspective on news, current affairs and world affairs. Our distinctively homegrown entertainment programming draws audiences from across the country. Deeply rooted in communities, CBC/Radio-Canada offers diverse content in English, French and eight Indigenous languages. We also deliver content in Spanish, Arabic, Chinese, Punjabi and Tagalog, as well as both official languages, through Radio Canada International (RCI). We are leading the transformation to meet the needs of Canadians in a digital world.

About Blink49 Studios

Co-founded in 2021 by industry veterans CEO John Morayniss, Non-Executive Vice Chair Patrice Theroux, COO Jeff Lynas and CFO Nelson Kuo-Lee, Blink49 Studios is a full-service indie studio focused on the development, production, and monetization of premium scripted and unscripted content for a global market. Headquartered in Toronto with offices in Los Angeles, Blink49 Studios was formed in partnership with its anchor investor and lead strategic partner FIFTH SEASON (formerly Endeavor Content). With a combined experience of innovative deal-making and strong relationships in the creative community, Blink49 Studios takes a content-first approach by partnering with best-in-class writers, creators, producers, and talent as well as supporting new and diverse voices. 

About Front Street Pictures

Founded over twenty years ago in Vancouver, Front Street Pictures is a vertically-integrated production company offering development and production capabilities, post production infrastructure and a stage facility. Over its extensive history, Front Street Pictures has produced more than 300 movies and 150+ episodes of television comprising over 700 hours of scripted live action content from its Western Canadian production hub. Front Street Pictures and its work have been recognized with many awards in the past decade, including multiple Emmys.

About Piller/Segan

Piller/Segan is a globally-recognized production company based in Toronto and Los Angeles, founded by critically acclaimed producers Shawn Piller and Lloyd Segan. Coming off the hit series Private Eyes (Global, ION), together they have produced hundreds of hours of award-winning programming, which have been translated into 30 languages for 186 countries worldwide. Their projects span multiple seasons, attract a devoted fanbase, and garner prestigious industry-wide recognitions including Emmy, Saturn, GLAAD, Humanitas, and Peabody awards. In addition to PRIVATE EYES, Piller/Segan’s notable television credits include adaptations of Stephen King’s novels THE DEAD ZONE (USA Network) and HAVEN (Syfy), and ABC Family’s WILDFIRE and GREEK. Further credits include feature film SEXY EVIL GENIUS, distributed by Lionsgate, and Lifetime’s SEA CHANGE.   

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Elizabeth Reid, CBC Public Relations: