Executive producers Brian Hamilton and Susin Nielsen told the Straight in a conference call that they were saddened by the recent cancellation of Robson Arms.
However, they added that CTV had given them tremendous support. “They really got behind us in a big way in Season 3, and I suppose that makes it all the more disappointing that it didn’t translate into better numbers,” said Nielsen, who created the show with Gary Harvey.
Hamilton, vice president of Omni Film Productions, emphasized that Robson Arms attracted “very respectable ratings”.
“Our first nine episodes averaged over half a million viewers, so it’s nothing to be ashamed about,” he said. “But CTV sets the bar high. A lot of Canadian shows would be envious of the numbers we got.”
Hamilton said each of the series’ three seasons employed about 50 cast and 100 crew members.
Robson Arms is the fifth show the local industry has lost this year.
Hamilton thinks this downturn is the result of corporate mergers. “The Canadian independent television community is dealing with a slowdown that is created by, or at least partially by, the fact that about a year ago many of the key broadcasters—our key clients—were busy buying each other and merging with each other,” Hamilton commented. “And about a year later, we’re experiencing the results of a period of uncertainty at most of the broadcasters.”