TORONTO — Two stars of the soon-to-be-finished series “Kim’s Convenience” are each getting their own show, one of which is a spinoff created by the showrunner of the CBC hit comedy.
The public broadcaster says Nicole Power and Andrew Phung will star in new, half-hour original comedies set to launch during the upcoming 2021-22 broadcast season.
Power, who hails from in Middle Cove, N.L., will star as her “Kim’s” character Shannon Ross in the spinoff “Strays.”
“Kim’s Convenience” co-creator Kevin White also created Ross’s new series, which will follow the enthusiastic car-rental agency manager Shannon as she embarks on a new career in Hamilton.
Calgary-raised Phung, who played Kimchee on “Kim’s,” will star in “Run the Burbs” as a stay-at-home dad with an entrepreneur wife and two kids.
Phung also created the series with his best friend and collaborator, filmmaker Scott Townend.
“Kim’s Convenience” stars Paul Sun-Hyung Lee, Jean Yoon, Simu Liu and Andrea Bang as a Korean-Canadian family who run a corner store in Toronto.
Ross’s character works with Jung, played by Liu, and Kimchee who is Jung’s best friend.
Producers announced earlier this month the show, which has earned a global following on Netflix, will end for good on April 13 with the final episode of the current fifth season.
That’s a full season shorter than what was planned in early 2020, when the comedy was renewed for two additional seasons at the CBC.
The producers said the decision came after White and fellow co-creator Ins Choi confirmed at the end of production on season 5 that they were moving on to pursue other projects.
“Given their departure from the series, we have come to the difficult conclusion that we cannot deliver another season of the same heart and quality that has made the show so special,” the producers said in a statement.
A publicist says “Strays” is the project White was moving on to.
The CBC says “Strays” is currently in production and has been in development since July 2018, while “Run the Burbs” has been in development since last May.
“Kim’s Convenience” debuted in 2016 and is based on the award-winning play by Choi.
When news broke it was ending, Lee and Liu took to social media to say they were “heartbroken.”
“Strays” and “Run the Burbs” join the previously announced original show “Sort Of” as new additions to the comedy lineup in the upcoming broadcast season at the CBC, which has also seen several other series come to an end in recent months for various reasons: “Burden of Truth,” “Trickster” and “Frankie Drake Mysteries.”
Bilal Baig and Fab Filippo created “Sort Of,” which also stars Baig “as a gender fluid millennial trying to live their most authentic life,” says a news release.
Thunderbird Entertainment produces “Strays,” which also includes cast members Frank Cox-O’Connell, Tina Jung, Nikki Duval, Kevin Vidal, Tony Nappo, Paula Boudreau and Emily Piggford.
The CBC says it will announce more details about “Run the Burbs,” which is produced by Pier 21 Films, later this spring.
“As our comedy slate continues to evolve, we are thrilled to continue working with Andrew and Nicole and offer audiences two new comedies to look forward to,” Sally Catto, general manager of entertainment, factual and sports at the CBC, said in a statement.
“Both of these series were planned to join ‘Kim’s Convenience’ on our comedy lineup this upcoming year, to reflect how many young Canadians are forging new lives outside of urban centres in Canada. We look forward to watching Andrew and Nicole as they explore these new stories.”
Victoria Ahearn, The Canadian Press