Canadian comedy hit Corner Gas, which went off the air in April 2009 after six successful seasons, is being reborn, the Comedy Network announced today (December 19), but the residents of Dog River will not look exactly as fans remember them.
The new series will be animated, and Vancouver studio Prairie Pantoons will be co-producing the show along with Toronto’s Moving Mountoons.
Show co-producer Virginia Thompson told Business in Vancouver they don’t yet know how many jobs will be created or based in B.C., because they are in the process of figuring it out right now. However, five of the eight lead cast members—including show creator, co-producer and star Brent Butt (who plays “Brent” on the show), Fred Ewanuick (“Hank”), Lorne Cardinal (“Davis”) and Nancy Robertson (“Wanda”)—live in Vancouver, and all the key creative will be based here. Functions that will take place here include all writing, character design, post-production sound, voice recording and supporting staff roles.
“We’re doing all the final creative and decision-making out of Vancouver.”
The only function that will not be done here is the key animation; this will take place in Toronto.
“Vancouver is so crazy busy right now, it was hard to find it there,” she said. “B.C.’s on fire right now.”
The main cast will return to the show. The character of Emma will be voiced by a new actress, however, as Janet Wright has since passed away.
Series star and creator Brent Butt will be executive producer of the animated reboot, along with David Storey and Virginia Thompson.
Butt said he has always been a fan of animation.
“It’s been a huge amount of fun creating animated scripts for our Corner Gas gang,” he said. “We used to come up with some pretty wild fantasy sequences and bizarre flashbacks in the old story room but were limited with what we could do in the real world.
“We’re not in the real world anymore.”
During all six seasons of its run, Corner Gas was the top-rated sitcom in Canada.
Pre-production of the new series will begin in January.