Sep 26, 2016

Series created by Riley Adams, Kenneth Hirsch and Adrian Wills

Executive produced by Kenneth Hirsch, Michael Levine, Malcolm MacRury, Adrian Wills and Riley Adams, with MacRury serving as showrunner

Production now underway in Montreal

CBC has commissioned 21 THUNDER, a new original eight episode, one-hour drama series from PMA Productions and Generic Productions. Set in Montreal, the series takes viewers into the fiercely competitive and high-stakes world of an under-21 soccer academy, following the players and coaches who risk it all for a shot at the pros. Production started in late August in Montreal and will continue until November 15, with the series set to premiere in summer 2017 on CBC.

"We are excited to be working with the team at PMA and Generic to pull the curtain back on the thrilling and high pressure world of elite sports," said Sally Catto, general manager, programming, CBC Television. "This riveting drama will offer audiences a fresh and diverse perspective on the world's most popular sport, and what it takes to play 'the beautiful game' at the pro level."

"We share CBC's commitment to delivering an adrenaline-fuelled series that will appeal to viewers across all platforms, and attract the attention of new audiences eager for gripping, serialized dramas featuring the stories of millennials with big dreams," said executive producers Malcolm MacRury and Kenneth Hirsch.

"By exploring the rich cultural diversity of Canada through an intricate tapestry of storylines, 21 Thunder will export Canadian values of tolerance and opportunity to international audiences worldwide," said executive producer Michael Levine.

In the cutthroat world of pro soccer, a club lives and dies by the stars on its under-21 team. They are the future and lifeblood of any franchise, but most will never make it. 21 THUNDER is the story of the Montreal Thunder U21 team, following the team's star players on and off the field. A story of love, crime, race, sex and athletic glory, at its core the series is about how a group of players and coaches unite as family in the whirlwind of life, one step away from the pros.

Helping to coach the team are Christy Cook (Stephanie Bennett, The Romeo Section, Descendants), an Olympic soccer hero forced on the team for PR reasons; and Davey Gunn (former Scottish footballer Ryan Pierce, who played as Ryan O'Leary), an international soccer superstar who is on the run from both the paparazzi and his past. The team consists of striker and former gang-member Nolan Gallard (RJ Fetherstonhaugh, Wayward Pines); Ivory Coast midfielder Junior Lolo (Emmanuel Kabongo, Hemlock Grove), a brilliant new arrival; and team captain, goalie and academic prodigy Alex el Haddadi (Andres Joseph, The Flash). Together they strive under notorious coach Albert Rocas (Conrad Pla, 19-2) to win games for the club, and a future for themselves.

Commissioned by CBC, 21 THUNDER is produced by PMA Productions and Generic Productions, and executive produced by Kenneth Hirsch (Extraordinary Canadians, Outbreak: Anatomy of a Plague), Michael Levine (Republic of Doyle), Adrian Wills (The Surrogacy Trap, All Together Now), Riley Adams (Crossing the Rubicon: The Journey, Flashpoint) and Malcolm MacRury ( Republic of Doyle, Saving Hope), who also serves as showrunner. Riley Adams is co-creator along with Kenneth Hirsch and Adrian Wills.


About CBC/Radio-Canada
CBC/Radio-Canada is Canada's national public broadcaster and one of its largest cultural institutions. We are Canada's trusted source of news, information and Canadian entertainment. Deeply rooted in communities all across the country, CBC/Radio-Canada offers diverse content in English, French and eight Indigenous languages. We also provide international news and information from a uniquely Canadian perspective.

For more information including series synopses, press releases, hi-res images, video clips and bios, please visit the CBC Media Centre at cbc.ca/mediacentre .

For further information, please contact:

Danielle Sefton, publicist, CBC