TORONTO — The CBC series “Anne with an E” and “Schitt’s Creek” are the leading nominees for this year’s Canadian Screen Awards.
Each show has 15 nominations for the awards, which honour Canadian talent in film, television and digital media.
“Anne with an E” is up for trophies including best drama series and best actress for Amybeth McNulty, who stars as the young Prince Edward Island heroine from Lucy Maud Montgomery’s classic novel.
“Schitt’s Creek”‘s nominations include best comedy series and acting nods for the main stars, who play a riches-to-rags family — Eugene Levy, Daniel Levy, Catherine O’Hara and Annie Murphy.
Both “Anne with an E” and “Schitt’s Creek” also stream on Netflix and have been gaining international buzz.
On the film side, the leading contenders are from Quebec: Maxime Giroux’s allegorical drama “The Great Darkened Days” and Daniel Roby’s disaster thriller “Just a Breath Away” with eight nominations apiece.
Both are contenders in categories including best picture and best director.
Giroux’s film is about a draft dodger from Quebec who takes refuge in the American West.
“Just a Breath Away” follows a couple trying to save their daughter from a toxic gas cloud in Paris.
Also in the running for best picture are the post-apocalyptic “Genesis” directed by Freddie Hutton-Mills, coming-of-age drama “A Colony” from Geneviève Dulude-De Celles, and Sophie Dupuis’ Montreal crime story “Family First.”
The Canadian Screen Awards, which will air from Toronto on CBC and the CBC Gem streaming service on March 31, have a total of 135 categories.
The other best drama series contenders announced Thursday are City’s “Bad Blood,” OMNI’s “Blood and Water,” CBC’s “Frankie Drake Mysteries” and History’s “Vikings.”
The best comedy series category is rounded out by CraveTV’s “Letterkenny,” CBC’s “Mr. D” and “Workin’ Moms,” and OMNI’s “Second Jen.”
The CBC says its popular show “Kim’s Convenience,” which won best comedy series at last year’s awards and is also on Netflix, was not eligible to be nominated this year as its broadcast slot moved from fall to winter.
Other major nominees this year include season 2 of CTV’s crime drama “Cardinal,” titled “Blackfly Season,” which has 14 nods including best limited series or program.
“CBC News: The National” has 13 nominations, while Global’s end-of-life drama “Mary Kills People” and CBC’s parenting comedy “Workin’ Moms” have nine nods each.
This year’s Canadian Screen Awards won’t have a host and will hand out special honours to stars including the Kids in the Hall comedy troupe, who will get the Academy Icon Award.
Meanwhile, comedy great Mary Walsh will receive the Earle Grey Award for her body of work and filmmaker Deepa Mehta will get the Lifetime Achievement Award.
Toronto actor Stephan James — who has skyrocketed to fame with starring roles in the Oscar-nominated film “If Beale Street Could Talk” and the Amazon Prime Video series “Homecoming” — will get the inaugural Radius Award, which goes to a Canadian making waves globally.
Victoria Ahearn, The Canadian Press