Mar 11, 2021

Wattpad, the global multi-platform entertainment company for original stories, and CBC, Canada’s national public broadcaster, are developing two original series, Near or Far and The Last Place to Hide for the CBC Gem streaming service. The projects are the result of a content partnership between Wattpad and CBC to identify emerging Canadian Wattpad writers and stories to develop for CBC Gem. First announced in 2018, Wattpad Studios and CBC have now extended the partnership through 2022. 

In young adult (YA) thriller The Last Place To Hide, from Wattpad author Taylor Hale, an unexpected murder matching the MO of a long-vanished serial killer reopens a cold case and old wounds for the only victim who got away: 19-year-old Frankie Russo, now a suffering alcoholic college student and part-time PI. Eight years since her parents' murder, armed only with her crime-writer father's unfinished novel and sheer grit, Frankie gets the chance to seize justice where the authorities couldn't and capture a killer. Hale is also the author of the hit Wattpad story and book The Summer I Drowned (Wattpad Books).

A CBC Gem original series, The Last Place to Hide is co-created by Taylor Hale and Lisa Baylin in association with Wattpad Studios and iThentic.

YA drama Near or Far, from Wattpad author Emma Szalai, 18-year-old twins Sadie & Lauren vow to remain as close as ever as they venture forth down opposite paths for the first time in their lives. However, time apart begins to reveal cracks in their family tree and realizations that their memories of shared moments bear no resemblance to one another igniting a match that sees the twins keeping secrets, hiding truths, and careening towards an irreparable betrayal.

A CBC Gem original series, Near or Far is co-created by Emma Szalai and Duana Taha in association with Wattpad Studios and Harlow Creative.


About Wattpad
Wattpad’s vision is to entertain and connect the world through stories. Wattpad’s flagship app is a leading social storytelling platform, home to a community of more than 90 million people who spend over 23 billion minutes a month engaged in original stories. Wattpad’s Story DNA Machine Learning technology allows the company to discover stand-out stories among more than one billion uploads written on the platform. Wattpad Studios and Wattpad Books are transforming entertainment and publishing, using data-backed insights to turn Wattpad stories into books, films and TV shows. Wattpad Brand Partnerships help brands build deep engagement with Gen Z consumers. The company is proudly based in Toronto, Canada. Learn more at company.wattpad.com.

About CBC/Radio-Canada
CBC/Radio-Canada is Canada’s national public broadcaster. Through our mandate to inform, enlighten and entertain, we play a central role in strengthening Canadian culture. As Canada’s trusted news source, we offer a uniquely Canadian perspective on news, current affairs and world affairs. Our distinctively homegrown entertainment programming draws audiences from across the country. Deeply rooted in communities, CBC/Radio-Canada offers diverse content in English, French and eight Indigenous languages. We also deliver content in Spanish, Arabic and Chinese, as well as both official languages, through Radio Canada International (RCI). We are leading the transformation to meet the needs of Canadians in a digital world.

About Harlow Creative
Harlow Creative was founded with the goal of developing and producing a groundbreaking slate of television and digital content. Led by Executive Producer and President Caitlin Brown (Lost Girl, Dark Matter, TallBoyz) and Producer and Development Executive Natalie Cooper, Harlow champions innovative and diverse content and creators. Harlow produced CBC Gem’s Queens, a comedy-mystery-whodunnit starring an eclectic cast of Toronto drag queens. Its current development slate includes the CBC Gem/Wattpad collaboration Near or Far, supernatural family drama Ravenwood, and Icelandic historical fantasy series Monstrosity.

About iThentic
iThentic is an entertainment company focused on developing, producing, and distributing narrative-based content across all platforms. Launched in 2006, iThentic has been involved in the creation of several award-winning productions including transmedia series Guidestones, winner of International Digital Emmy, Canadian Screen Award, Digi and Rockie Awards; Space Riders: Division Earth, winner of the 2015 Canadian Screen Award for Best Digital Series; Epic Studios, an original scripted series for Disney / Maker Studios starring EpicLloyd; Save Me, a CBC series and winner of multiple Canadian Screen Awards; and For The Record which recently launched on CBC Gem and will have its international premiere at the 2021 SXSW Film Festival. iThentic’s track record as an innovative content company was recognized by Playback as the Digital Company of the Year (2012).

Media Contact:
Kiel Hume, kiel@wattpad.com

Simon Bassett, simon.bassett@cbc.ca