Yes, a lot of you have echoed comments that sadness is in the air due to the end of Season 4. But hey chums, don't be glum!!! There is a whole bunch to be looking forward to! Click through to the blog to find what the off-season holds for fans of Heartland!
I'm going to do my best to keep everyone happy between now and September, when the 5th Season of Heartland (18 one-hour episodes) begins airing on CBC Television, both on this, the Official Heartland Site, as well as on the Heartland on CBC Facebook page.
Every Thursday there'll be a blog post, updating you with Heartland happenings in Canada and around the world. Production on the 5th Season of your favourite television series begins in May in Alberta and it's going to be very exciting. Thanks to my friendly spies on the set I will be bringing you news and secrets about the episodes as they are being filmed, along with details on guest stars, plot happenings, locations, new critters and other news regarding the returning cast and crew.
This will also be your main place to learn what is happening away from the set as well, as appearances, autograph signings and any place you may be able to meet the cast at official Heartland functions will be revealed to you first here!
And when I write "away from set" I also mean what is happening with Heartland around the globe. Although Heartland will always premiere on the CBC there are dozens of other countries that the series plays in, and whenever I can I'll supply you with information on when and where Heartland is airing. For example, this week I can tell you that negotiations are ongoing to bring the third season of Heartland to the U.K., and that GMC in the U.S. will be playing Heartland from the very beginning, starting with a sneak peek April 10 at 7:00pm and 8:00pm.
Last year we had a big series of Q&As with the cast and many crew members, which allowed you to get more in touch with what happens behind the scenes at Heartland- more about that later. We aren't doing that this year, but I am are going to make sure that ther's a lot going on that'll update you every week so you'll all become experts on Heartland (those of you that aren't already!!!) Many of the things that appear here will not appear anywhere else.
One thing I am going to get up soon will be a FAQ section. FAQ stands for Frequently Asked Questions, and I want to be able to answer as many questions as possible both in here and on Facebook. Part of what makes the interactions on this site so much fun is my ability to directly address your concerns and I want to keep doing that, so if I direct those who ask oft repeated questions to a FAQ section this'll save me from always having to come up with the same answers to numerous common questions. Questions like, "When does Heartland air?" (A: 7:00pm on Sundays, 7:30pm in Newfoundland), "When did Season 3 get released in Canada on DVD?" (A: March 22) and "Is there going to be a 6th Season?" (A: Perhaps - it depends how Season 5 performs!) If I have fewer of these questions to answer I can spend more times answering some of your more unique inquiries!
We'll also have games, puzzles, and more contests, as well as LOTS of information. A regular visitor to this site will be a genuine Heartland authority, and that's exactly what I want you all to be. So bookmark this site and check back often for updates!
Other things to report...
1) Well, the past couple of days have been warmer in Calgary and the melting of the snow is on, just in time for the production offices to open next week when the locations department will start scouting out some great vistas where scenes can be shot when the series' cameras begin rolling in May.
2) Boy, did we ever hit the right button with the "Name Lou and Peter's baby Contest." With thousands (and thousands) of entries so far, I have assured our esteemed judges (Head Writer Heather Conkie, Actress Michelle Morgan and Executive Producer Jordy Randall) that they'll have their work cut out for them, but they will definitely have a great selection of first names to choose from. If you have yet to enter, you can do so here - http://cbc.ca/heartland/contest/ - you have until April 10, and naturally we will announce the winner on Mother's Day, May 8.
3) Earlier this week I linked to a Canadian National Institute for the Blind (C.N.I.B.) charity auction on Ebay, where the show had provided a set visit for 4, sometime this year during production. Well, after 67 bids the highest bid is currently at $2,500.00, with a little over 6 days to go. Nice! So, in addition to the set visit, the winners will now get 2 nights' accommodation at the Westin Hotel in Calgary as well as dinner for 4 at Rouge Restaurant - one of Calgary's best restaurants - and Complete DVD sets for Heartland Seasons 1,2 and 3 as well as an autographed poster. To see the auction item, go here - http://cgi.ebay.ca/Heartland-CBC-TV-Show-Set-Visit-Charity-CNIB-/180644376412?pt=Tickets_Experiences&hash=item2a0f3e6f5c .
4) Also, the image you see at the top of this post is a painting of Amber Marshall entitled "Heartland Heroine," by Alberta artist Glenn Olson. The artist has donated a Giclée - Limited Edition #12/50 - unframed print of the artwork. The print's size is 11 1/2" x 16", and it is autographed by the artist and by Amber. This item will be listed on April 2nd, at http://shop.ebay.ca/cnib2011/m.html?_nkw=&_armrs=1&_from=&_ipg=&_trksid=p3686 .
That's pretty well it for me this week. I'll be back next week with more news and some things that we will be bringing you over the course of the next 6 months until Heartland Season 5 premieres. Or should I say half a year? Hmmmmmm - which sounds shorter?
Your friendly neighbourhood Blog Whisperer.