New to CBC Gem in February 2021

Jan 25, 2021

CBC Gem is Canada’s streaming service, offering more than 5000 hours of live and on-demand Canadian programming and a curated selection of acclaimed, best-in-class content from around the world, including more than 750 documentaries, 400 hours of ad-free content for kids and tweens, and a collection of over 120 Canadian feature films. CBC Gem is available free as an app for iOS and Android devices and online at, and on TV screens via Apple TV, Google Chromecast, Amazon Fire TV and Android TV.

Note: This schedule is subject to change.

A collection inspired by BLACK HISTORY MONTH launches February 1, including the critically acclaimed sketch comedy SHERMAN’S SHOWCASE (Feb. 1), HOW IT FEELS TO BE FREE (Feb. 1), HIP HOP: SONGS THAT SHOOK AMERICA (Feb. 1), and the exclusive Canadian premiere of the critically acclaimed BBC film ANTHONY (Feb. 5)

Anthology series 21 BLACK FUTURES from CBC Arts and Obsidian Theatre launches in three parts (Feb. 12, Feb. 19 and Feb. 26), featuring 21 monodramas from 21 multigenerational Black playwrights across the country, directed by 21 Black directors and performed by 21 Black actors

New international dramas include the exclusive Canadian premiere of acclaimed historical drama BELGRAVIA (Feb. 14) and Season 3 of the beloved British series CALL THE MIDWIFE (Feb. 5)

Canadian films new to CBC Gem this month include OLD STONE (Feb. 19), 2018 Berlin International Film Festival Nominee for ‘Best Debut Film’ LEMONADE (Feb. 19) and 2012 TIFF Co-Winner of the ‘Best Canadian First Feature’ BLACKBIRD (Feb. 26)

CBC’s winter 2021 slate of original programming, including more than 20 new and returning Canadian series reflecting a diverse range of storytelling and perspectives, is streaming now on CBC Gem

Begins streaming Monday, February 1

  • HIP HOP: THE SONGS THAT SHOOK AMERICA (Documentary, Music, 6X60, Jigsaw, USA)
    Begins streaming Monday, February 1

    From executive producers Ahmir "Questlove" Thompson, Tariq "Black Thought" Trotter, Shawn Gee and Alex Gibney, each episode of this new documentary series focuses on a groundbreaking song pivotal to the evolution of American music and culture.

“The show is frequently terrific, and it works best when it’s diving headlong into the granular details of a song’s origins and compositional history”Jack Hamilton, Slate

“They approach their topic with the wisdom of musicologists, the storytelling prowess of raconteurs, and the intensity of true nerds”Troy Patterson, The New Yorker

  • SHERMAN’S SHOWCASE (Comedy, 8x30, Radical Media, USA)
    Begins streaming Monday, February 1
    *Exclusive Canadian Premiere*

    This groundbreaking, wickedly funny mockumentary series travels through time via music and clips drawn from the 40-year library of a legendary (fictional) music and variety show. Cameos include John Legend, Tiffany Haddish, Mary J Blige and more.

“Sherman’s Showcase is above all – and most importantly – just plain funny”Tambay Obenson, IndieWire

“A pure jolt of stylized nostalgia, from its affectionate sendups of soul, R&B and hip-hop to its candy-colored sets with their abstract cutouts, traversed by roller-skating dancers”Mike Hale, The New York Times

  • HOW IT FEELS TO BE FREE (Documentary, 1x112, directed by Yoruba Richen, Executive produced by 15-Time Grammy Winner Alicia Keys and produced by Yap Films, Canada & USA)
    Begins streaming Monday, February 1

    HOW IT FEELS TO BE FREE tells the inspiring story of how six iconic African American female entertainers – Lena Horne, Abbey Lincoln, Nina Simone, Diahann Carroll, Cicely Tyson and Pam Grier – challenged an entertainment industry deeply complicit in perpetuating racist stereotypes, and transformed themselves and their audiences in the process.
  • GIANTS OF AFRICA (Documentary, 1x80, directed by Hubert Davis, Canada)
    Begins streaming Monday, February 1

    A behind-the-scenes look at a basketball youth program set up in Africa by the General Manager of the NBA's Toronto Raptors, Masai Ujiri.

“The low-key style and the simplicity of its storytelling make the film all the more powerful”Bruce DeMara, Toronto Star

“Inspiring”Pat Mullen, POV Magazine

  • ANTHONY (Made-for-Television Film, Drama, 1x90, directed by Terry McDonough, UK)
    Begins streaming Friday, February 5
    *Exclusive Canadian Premiere*

    In July 2005, Anthony Walker was murdered by two white racists in an unprovoked attack in Liverpool. He was just 18 years old. ANTHONY tells the story of how this talented young Black man’s life may have turned out.

5/5 “Beautiful, harrowing”; “Every scene of happiness hollows out your heart a little more - it is an incredibly evocative replication of the grief bereavement brings”Lucy Mangan, The Guardian

4/5 “Powerful stuff and unlike anything I've seen before”Ben Dowell, The Times (UK)

  • NANCY’S PRO TIPS (4x10, directed by Aïcha Diop, 2021)
    Begins streaming Friday, February 19

    Once a month Nancy Falaise closes the doors to her Montreal salon to lead a workshop for young Black girls eager to learn how to care for their natural hair. Falaise was featured in Nancy’s Workshop from CBC Short Docs, and this new four-part series shares haircare tips from her workshops that didn’t make the final cut.
  • 21 BLACK FUTURES PART 1-3 (CBC Arts and Obsidian Theatre Anthology Series)
    Begins streaming Friday, February 12, 19 & 26

    21 BLACK FUTURES is an anthology of 21 filmed monodramas, commissioned from 21 multigenerational Black playwrights across the country, directed by 21 Black directors and performed by 21 Black actors. Aligned with Black History Month and Obsidian Theatre’s 21st anniversary, each episode of 21 Black Futures will respond to the question, “What is the future of Blackness?”.


  • BELGRAVIA Season 1 (6x60, Carnival Film & Television Limited, UK)
    Begins streaming Sunday, February 14; also broadcasting  on CBC TV beginning February 14
    *Exclusive Canadian Premiere*

    When a long-buried secret is unearthed it threatens the reputation and inheritance of many, sending shockwaves through the sophisticated society of London’s Belgravia. Pride and loyalty will be tested, as lives hang in the balance. Named in The New York Times’ Best TV Shows of 2020 list.

Highlighted in Vanity Fair’s Five New Juicy Costume Dramas to Add Glamour to Your Quarantine

“Belgravia is an entertainment, first and foremost – and a cracking good one at that – but it also serves as a biting critique of the unearned shame spurred by prejudice that severs our connection from those we love”Matt Fagerholm,

  • CALL THE MIDWIFE Season 3 (8x60, Neal Street Productions, UK)
    Begins streaming Friday, February 5

    The plot follows newly qualified midwife Jenny Lee, as well as the work of midwives and the nuns of Nonnatus House, a nursing convent and part of an Anglican religious order, coping with the medical problems in the deprived Poplar district of London's desperately poor East End in the 1950s.

“Family-friendly, heartwarming and gently humorous”Morwenna Ferrier, The Telegraph

“A bittersweet story of matriarchal community life, full of colourful characters, convincing period detail and warm humour” –The Daily Telegraph

“Call the Midwife has got ‘hit’ written all over it”Mirror


  • RACHEL KHOO: MY SWEDISH KITCHEN Season 1 (8x30, Splay One, UK)
    Begins streaming Friday, February 5
    *Exclusive Canadian Premiere*

    Follow Rachel Khoo as she travels throughout Sweden to explore the nature-led lifestyle that has influenced food culture before returning to her countryside cabin to cook her own versions of classic Swedish meals.
  • GRAND DESIGNS: NEW ZEALAND Season 2 (8x60, Imagination Television, Fremantle Australia)
    Begins streaming Friday, February 26
    *Exclusive Canadian Premiere*

    GRAND DESIGNS features striking architecture, brilliant personal documentary, outstanding design and engaging stories, as celebrated architect, designer, urbanist and philosopher Chris Moller meets the brave Kiwis building their own extraordinary homes all over the country, following them from start to finish.


  • SWEET DADDY SIKI (1x73, directed by Harvey Glazer, Canada)
    Begins streaming Friday, February 5

    Reginald "Sweet Daddy" Siki is a professional wrestling icon, successful country music singer, and household name. This is his story, told by wrestling icons, celebrities, fascinating historians, family, friends, and the legend himself.
  • MET WHILE INCARCERATED (1x78, directed by Catherine Legge, Canada)
    Begins streaming Friday, February 12

    The provocative and touching love story of three successful, strong, intelligent women who've shocked themselves and their loved ones by falling for a man who is in prison for a violent crime.
  • FINDING SALLY (1x78, directed by Tamara Mariam Dawit, Canada)
    Begins streaming Friday, February 19

    A personal investigation into the mysterious life of the director’s aunt Sally, an Ethiopian aristocrat-turned-communist-rebel who disappeared during the Ethiopian Revolution.


  • ANOTHER KIND OF WEDDING (Comedy, Romance, 1x86, directed by Pat Kiely)
    Begins streaming Friday, February 12

    Matthew and Louisa are about to celebrate the biggest day of their lives, but their wedding becomes the perfect venue for their dysfunctional families to confront what tore them apart in the first place: Louisa is marrying her brother's ex-girlfriend while separated parents are brought together in the same place at the same time, meaning fireworks are bound to go off.
  • LOVESICK (Documentary, 1x52, directed by Ann S. Kim and Priya Giri Desai, USA & India)
    Begins streaming Friday, February 12

    Dr. Suniti Solomon discovered the first case of HIV in India, in 1986. Since then, she has fought to destigmatize the illness and to give her patients dignity and hope. She is a matchmaker who uses science to bring couples together.

“Solomon and her team play Cupid, working to bridge the gaps between social norms and unspeakable taboos”Anisha Jhaveri, NBC News

  • LOVE ME AS I AM (Documentary, 1x52, Southern Pictures Pty Ltd, Australia)
    Begins streaming Friday, February 12
    *Exclusive Canadian Premiere*

    Relationship counselor Liz Dore works with neurologically diverse young people and people with developmental disabilities as they navigate the world of dating.

“Throughout it all though, Dore holds the group together, and, like the filmmakers, treads lightly and with humour and grace”; “[this is] a slice of lives to which we might not otherwise be privy”Kylie Northover, The Sydney Morning Herald


  • UNTIL FURTHER NOTICE (1x20, directed by Tiffany Hsiung, Toronto, ON)
    Begins streaming Friday, February 12

    With his industry on lockdown and no end in sight, Toronto chef Luke Donato tries to keep his culinary passion alive during the COVID-19 pandemic, even if it means teaching a group of misfits online.
  • SAKHI-PITIYAHTE (BRIGHT LIGHT COMES FORTH FROM IT) (1x20, directed by Carr Sappier, Tobique First Nation, NB)
    Begins streaming Friday, February 12

    Inspired by the landscapes of the Wolastoqey community of Neqotkuk (Tobique First Nation), the film captures the importance of nature, culture, and storytelling during the COVID-19 pandemic.


  • LEMONADE (Drama, 1x88, directed by Ioana Uricaru)
    Begins streaming Friday, February 19

    Mara, a young Romanian woman, moves to the U.S. with her nine-year-old son to marry an American she has met only a few months ago. The film follows her through a series of revealing encounters during one day, from her problems of babysitting, her unplanned and uncomfortable meeting with a U.S. immigration official, to dealing with the police about her son she had to leave in a motel room, and the bank issue for a loan with her husband.

“An engaging and harrowingly topical drama” Neil Young, The Hollywood Reporter

  • OLD STONE (Drama, Thriller, 1x80, directed by Johnny Ma)
    Begins streaming Friday, February 19

    Lao Shi fights for justice after a drunk passenger grabs the steering wheel, causing an accident that put a person into a coma. Because the victim's family is destitute, Lao Shi pays the hospital bills and the insurance company refuses to cover the costs because of a technicality. Now Lao Shi needs the testimony of his passenger, who angrily refuses to cooperate. On his quest to find who's responsible for his plight, Lao Shi ends up becoming a perpetrator himself.

“Chinese-Canadian helmer-scribe Johnny Ma makes a remarkably mature debut”Maggie Lee, Variety

  • BLACKBIRD (Drama, 1x103, directed by Jason Buxton)
    Begins streaming Friday, February 26

    The film stars Connor Jessup as a socially isolated and bullied goth teenager who befriends his "puck bunny" classmate (Alexia Fast), but is falsely accused of plotting a school shooting after he makes a threat against her boyfriend in an online chat session.  The film garnered two nominations at the 1st Canadian Screen Awards, for Best Original Screenplay (Buxton) and Best Editing (Kimberlee McTaggart). The film was also a co-winner for the Best Canadian First Feature Film award at the 2012 Toronto International Film Festival.

The Toronto Star noted “Connor Jessup’s finely modulated performance”