Flashpoint delivers for CTV

The network looks to have another homegrown hit on its hands, on both sides of the border.

The series premiere of action drama Flashpoint grabbed a boffo 1.1 million viewers in the challenging Friday 10 pm time slot. The show aired in simulcast with CBS, where the Toronto-set cop drama reached over eight million Americans.

Executive producers Bill Mustos and Anne Marie La Traverse say the numbers are ‘extraordinary’ for the Friday time slot, and are especially pleased the show grew its audience in the second half-hour. ‘That’s really what you want…because the networks’ promotional campaign can bring the audience to the show, but then the show has to grow its viewership. We were really happy that pattern existed both on CBS and CTV,’ says Mustos, who produces through Avamar Entertainment.

La Traverse, who produces through Toronto’s Pink Sky Entertainment, says she celebrated her birthday on Monday as the Canadian numbers were released. ‘The idea that on Friday night something like 9.2 million people saw the show is just the most incredible gift.’

The second half of Flashpoint, about a team of elite police officers, grew to 8.2 million in the US and 1.2 million in Canada. An encore episode on Sunday at 10 pm drew 625,000 viewers, peaking at 647,000 on CTV (all numbers 2+).

The show arrived amid a substantial print, web, TV and billboard campaign from broadcaster CTV, where execs are pleased. ‘To be number one in North America underscores, yet again, the talent in this country,’ comments programming boss Susanne Boyce. The 13-parter is the first Canadian series since CTV’s Due South in the mid-’90s to air in prime time in both Canada and the US.

Flashpoint is entering production on its 10th episode this week and will wrap towards the end of August. The producers say it’s too early to think about a second season. ‘We’re taking it one broadcast night at a time and keeping our fingers crossed,’ says La Traverse. ‘We really hope people will come back.’

Episode two, airing Friday at 10 pm, guest stars Henry Czerny (The Tudors, Mayerthorpe) as a distraught father who takes a surgical team hostage in order to get a heart transplant for his daughter.

From Playback Daily