Saskatoon

Saskatoon-based sitcom Four in a Blanket to go live

Four in a Blanket a new web-based sitcom produced in Saskatoon is centred on a family of pigs. The show premiers in a free screening at the Roxy Theatre on May 29 and then all four episodes will be available online.

'They [pigs] are just kind of ridiculous,' says creator Gavin Baird

Ryan Wray, shown here in a scene from Four in a Blanket, plays Rex the daughter's boyfriend. (Gavin Baird )

Sometimes good ideas just pop into your head.

They eat slop, they have mud baths.- Gavin Baird 

"I joked; it would be funny to make a show with real pigs," said Gavin Baird. "They eat slop, they have mud baths, and they are just kind of ridiculous."

Baird is the creator and director of a new web-based sitcom produced in Saskatoon. It's called Four in a Blanket, and while it is centred on a family of pigs, Baird tweaked the original vision of the series when he asked himself an important question.

"Oh, but what if it was like a sitcom with human actors, playing pigs?" "Once I came up with that, the show practically wrote itself," Baird said in an interview with CBC Radio's Saskatoon Morning.

When pigs park

The show was put together with the help of a small grant and was shot quickly in a marathon session at PAVED Arts in Saskatoon. The crew built the sets, shot the entire series, and then tore the sets down all in the middle of a classic prairie snowstorm.

That storm led to one of the classic moments of the work when the actors, in full costume, had to go out and move their cars to make way for the snowploughs.

Darren Zimmer plays the dad, the head of the pig family.

"Nobody gave me a second look," Zimmer recalled. "Nobody stopped, there was no double take or anything like that, it was just a normal day in Saskatoon, I guess."

The web series (limited to four episodes) features some big names. Greg Sestero from The Room, known in film circles as a movie that is so terrible that it is good, and Saskatoon's own Canadian Idol runner-up Theresa Sokyrka provides the soundtrack.  

Darren Zimmer says his own father, a long time hog producer who has since passed away, would have had a good laugh at seeing his son play a pig. (Gavin Baird)

Pigs in the city

Four in a Blanket premiers in a free screening at the Roxy Theatre in Saskatoon on May 29, and will then all four episodes will be available online.

Zimmer is anxious to find out what people think. Although he knows his father, who has passed away, would be a big fan.

"My dad worked with pigs his entire life, 60 odd years of farming…and to see his son fitting with prosthesis and to be made a pig father in a pig family, I can't imagine him doing anything else but laughing."

with files from Saskatoon Morning