EXCLUSIVE: NBC is in negotiations to acquire upcoming Canadian medical drama series Saving Hope starring Erica Durance, Michael Shanks and Daniel Gillies for a summer run. Co-created and written by Malcolm MacRury and Morwyn Brebner, Saving Hope was inspired by a series of 2005 articles by Globe and Mail writer Ian Brown who spent eight weeks in Toronto’s Mount Sinai Hospital. It is described as a sexy, fast-paced drama set in a fictional Toronto hospital that follows the lives of the doctors and staff and the complicated decisions they make trying to save lives. Saving Hope, produced and distributed by Entertainment One, stars Michael Shanks (Stargate SG-1) as Dr. Harris, chief surgeon who lies in a coma and wanders the wards in spirit form, Erica Durance (Smallville) as his fiancee and fellow surgeon, and Daniel Gillies (The Vampire Diaries) is a hot new surgeon. The premise is somewhat reminiscent of CBS’ supernatural medical drama A Gifted Man. Saving Hope, which has a 13-episode order from CTV, is executive produced by Ilana Frank who is behind another Canadian drama that has done well in the US, ABC’s Rookie Blue. Production is slated to begin in March. Saving Hope is one of 2 new Canadian drama series that are close to deals for summer runs in the U.S. The CW is finalizing a pact for soap The L.A. Complex. So far, NBC has not gotten a lot of traction with Canadian imports. The Listener, which launched on the network in June 2009, was pulled after 9 episodes. eOne is already in business with NBC. It produces the network’s midseason series The Firm.
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