Call Me Fitz

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Call Me Fitz
CallMeFitzLogo2.jpg
Genre humour noir
Created by Sheri Elwood
Starring Jason Priestley
Ernie Grunwald
Peter MacNeill
Kathleen Munroe
Tracy Dawson
Donavan Stinson
Brooke Nevin
Composer(s) Richard Pell
Dylan Heming
Country of origin Canada
No. of seasons 4
No. of episodes 48
Production
Executive producer(s) David MacLeod
Michael Rosenberg
Noreen Halpern
John Morayniss
Laszlo Barna
Teza Lawrence
Michael Souther
Sheri Elwood
Location(s) New Minas, Nova Scotia, Canada
Running time 26-28 minutes
Broadcast
Original channel HBO Canada (season 1-3)
Movie Central (Western Canada, season 4)
The Movie Network (Eastern Canada, season 4)
Original run September 19, 2010 – present
External links
Website

Call Me Fitz is a Canadian television series produced by E1 Entertainment, Amaze Film & Television, and Big Motion Pictures.[1] The half-hour comedy stars Jason Priestley as Richard "Fitz" Fitzpatrick, a morally bankrupt used-car salesman whose consequence-free life is complicated by the arrival of do-gooder Larry (Ernie Grunwald), another salesman who claims he is Fitz's conscience.[2]

The series is co-produced by Movie Central (western Canada) and The Movie Network (central/eastern Canada), for airing on those two channels and their jointly-owned channel HBO Canada (Canada wide).[3] The first thirteen-episode season of the show premiered on HBO Canada in September 2010, with subsequent seasons premiering in September 2011, 2012, and October 2013.

The series is filmed in New Minas, Nova Scotia.[4]

Synopsis[edit]

The show stars Priestley as Richard Fitzpatrick, a used-car salesman walking a fine line of acceptable behaviour on the lot alongside a new salesman, do-gooder Larry, who claims to be the embodiment of his conscience.[5] Fitz's idealisation of Frank Sinatra and his dysfunctional family have shaped him into the cocksure anti-hero he is proud to be. Fitz's ambition is to get out of 'slinging tin' at his family's used car dealership and open his own lounge, the Summerwind. In the mean time he is content to make the Duncan Underwood Inn his watering hole. Fitz does not like the Ruptal cousins, whom he refers to as "9" and "11", and their used-car dealership across the street from Fitzpatrick Motors.

Fitz hits rock bottom when he crashes a GT while on a test drive and the customer ends up in a coma. Fitz meets Ali while in jail and at first believes her to be his lawyer until she says "mom", referring to Fitz's customer in the coma. In an attempt to avoid a pending attempted vehicular manslaughter charge Fitz decides to marry Babs, who comes out of her coma just in time to get married. Ali admits her attraction to Fitz after her mother tells him she wants a divorce and while they are making out in her car Ali accidentally steps on the accelerator and drives into and kills her mother.

In season two Fitz's attempts to open the Summerwind are thwarted by city council and Fitz is the prime suspect in the disappearance and suspected homicide of Sonja. Fitz decides to run for city council in season three. The news that Ali is pregnant with his baby does little to inspire Fitz to change his ways. Through an unfortunate series of mishaps Fitz ends up as mayor of Coverton. Fitz's rampant promiscuity is matched only by his corruption, which eventually lands him in prison. Fitz breaks out of prison just as Ali goes into labour.

With Ali having abandoned their son Fitz is left struggling with the challenges of being a single father in season four.

In an interview with RTÉ Jason Priestley described the show as "booze, blow and broads or Sunday night at Charlie Sheen's house."[6]

Characters[edit]

Production[edit]

It was announced in November 2009 that principal photography had begun on the first season of Call Me Fitz and that filming would continue in the Annapolis Valley until mid-January 2010.[3] Subsequent seasons have continued production in the Annapolis Valley, primarily in the town of New Minas, Nova Scotia. Now films in the Dartmouth area for season 4[7]

In order to achieve the feel of the Rat Pack era to which Fitz relates the soundtrack is primarily performed by Canadian jazz singer Matt Dusk.[8]

Prior to season four Priestley was critical of the promotion of the show, saying in response to people learning of the show via Twitter, "Traditional advertising is also still get a great way to get the word out, and I think that our broadcasters have not done a good job with traditional means for our show. I’m going to be totally frank with you about that: I don’t think they've done a good job at all. I don’t understand, we’re the most awarded comedy in Canadian television history and half the people in this country don’t even know we exist, and I can’t fathom that.". Priestley later added, "It's frustrating when you feel like you’re not being successful in getting the word out there, but I think a lot of that has to do with budget and money, and money being allocated to other places.".[9]

Broadcast[edit]

Call Me Fitz is co-produced by Movie Central (western Canada) and The Movie Network (central/eastern Canada), for airing on those two channels after premiering on their jointly-owned channel HBO Canada (Canada wide).[3] The first thirteen-episode season premiered on HBO Canada in September 2010, the thirteen-episode second season premiered in September 2011, and the twelve-episode third season premiered on HBO Canada in September 2012.[10][11] The ten-episode fourth season premiered in October 2013.[12] All four seasons also have regular runs and reruns on Movie Central, The Movie Network and HBO Canada.

The series has been sold in over 60 foreign markets,[13] including its American debut on the DirecTV exclusive The 101 Network (since renamed Audience Network) on April 21, 2011, with two back-to-back episodes, and was shown Thursdays at 9 pm ET/PT.[14] Season 2 started on Audience on November 3 in the 9:30 pm time slot.

Awards[edit]

The first season of Call Me Fitz was nominated for 16 Gemini Awards and won seven, including Best Actress (Comedy) for Tracy Dawson, Best Supporting Actor (Comedy) for Ernie Grunwald, and Best Guest Actress (Comedy) for Rachel Blanchard. The show also swept other comedy categories including Best Directing, Best Writing, Best Picture Editing, and Best Sound.[15]

Jason Priestley took home the award for Best TV Performance (Male) at the Canadian Comedy Awards. The show was also nominated for Best TV Show and Best Writing. At the Monte Carlo Television Festival, the show received Best International Producing and Best Acting nominations for Jason Priestley, Ernie Grunwald, Brooke Nevin, and Kathleen Munroe.

Additional nominations include Best TV Show and Best Production Design at the DGC Awards and Best Sitcom at the Banff World Media Festival.

In 2010, Jason Priestley received the Best Actor Award at the Roma Fiction Festival.

Reception[edit]

The New York Times called the series "A refreshingly original concept... It deftly draws a world in which sin and sexual charisma come at full new-model cost... [FITZ] is King of Front-Wheel Drive and Back-Seat Romps." [16]

Orange County, CA Film Commission President Paul Ruffino said about the series "A satirical demonic view of the menagerie of mediocrity called mankind. Bawdy and expertly written Call Me Fitz is TV platinum. HBO Canada? What about the lower 48...come on...we deserve genuine entertainment down here. A hit for sure!"

TV Guide wrote "The snappy, obscenity-filled dialogue was laugh-out-loud funny without being over the top. I call this one a hit."[17]

Episodes[edit]

Series Overview[edit]

Season Episodes Network Originally Aired Call Me Fitz DVD releases
Canada Canada Netherlands Netherlands Australia Australia Discs
1 13 HBO Canada 2010 September 27, 2011[18] October 26, 2011[19] May 16, 2012[20] 3
2 13 2011 March 13, 2012[21] 3
3 12 2012 September 17, 2013[22] 2
4 10 Movie Central and The Movie Network 2013

Season 1[edit]

Total # Episode # Title Directed by Written by Original air date
1 1 "The Pilot" Scott Smith Sheri Elwood September 19, 2010 (2010-09-19)
Fitz hits rock bottom when he crashes a test drive, puts a woman in a coma, and wakes up to find he’s grown a conscience – a living/breathing do-gooder named Larry, who threatens to not only set Fitz straight, but undercut his run for a 10th straight "Fibbie."
2 2 "Loco" Scott Smith Sheri Elwood & Dennis Heaton September 19, 2010 (2010-09-19)
When Larry purges Fitz of all his drugs and alcohol, Fitz tries to get Larry thrown in the nut house; after all, he claims to be his conscience. But at his intervention, in the throes of the DTs, Fitz is the one who ends up under psychiatric surveillance.
3 3 "Mama" Scott Smith Sheri Elwood September 26, 2010 (2010-09-26)
When Fitz discovers Ken is leaving Fitzpatrick Motors to Larry, he needs to prove Larry is NOT his brother by paying a visit to his absentee, alcoholic mother Elaine at her weekly key party. Unable to get the closure he wants, Fitz instead steals her car.
4 4 "Long Con Silver" Scott Smith Pat Bullard October 3, 2010 (2010-10-03)
Elaine returns in search of her stolen car. Desperate to reconcile mother and child, Larry encourages Fitz to team up with his Mom and scam the Ruptals, not realizing it’s all part of a con Elaine concocted to finalize her divorce and steal Fitz’s savings.
5 5 "The Back End" James Genn Ari Posner October 10, 2010 (2010-10-10)
On the eve of Ken’s birthday, Fitz has to blow Meghan’s gift out of the water. So he shoots a tribute porno filled with all of Ken’s favourite things; cars, baseball posters, and aging porn star Candy Box.
6 6 "Going Down Syndrome" James Genn Teleplay by: Dennis Heaton
Story by: Steven Cragg
October 17, 2010 (2010-10-17)
With his attempted vehicular manslaughter trial impending, Fitz tries to hook Larry up with a drunk chick, only to end up sleeping with Janet, the drunkest girl at the bar. But the next morning Fitz discovers Janet wasn’t inebriated, she’s brain damaged.
7 7 "The Diving Bell and the Barbara" Scott Smith Adriana Maggs October 24, 2010 (2010-10-24)
With a comatose Babs now able to communicate, Fitz asks for her limp hand in marriage, hoping spousal privilege will protect him from her morse code testimony. Larry throws Fitz the lamest bachelor party ever, and arranges the nuptials just in time for Babs to wake up and say "I do."
8 8 "Married to the Mom" Shawn Alex Thompson Heidi Gerber October 31, 2010 (2010-10-31)
Fitz is pleasantly surprised to discover his marriage to Babs fulfills his latent maternal longings. Appalled, Larry tries to get Ali to help break them up. But as the creepy love triangle unfolds, Fitz and Ali accidentally run over Babs, killing her instantly.
9 9 "The Upside of Matricide" Shawn Alex Thompson Dennis Heaton November 7, 2010 (2010-11-07)
Ali learns Babs’ dying wish was an organic burial – simple, tasteful, and completely illegal. If anyone can help her skirt the law, it’s Fitz.
10 10 "The Kidney Stays in the Picture" Jason Priestley Ari Posner November 14, 2010 (2010-11-14)
Fitzpatrick motor organized a charity event unfortunatelly Fitz and Larry get tangled up in a black market organ exchange. Which one will lose a kidney?
11 11 "This Business Has Been Homicide Free for __ Days" Jason Priestley Adriana Maggs & Jeff Detsky November 21, 2010 (2010-11-21)
A sniper takes siege on Fitzpatrick Motors. Larry is convinced it has something to do with Fitz withholding his syphilis diagnosis from all his sexual partners, but as Fitz points out, it could be any one of the hundreds of people who want him dead.
12 12 "Honesty, Integrity and Low Mileage: Part 1" James Genn Sheri Elwood & Tracy Dawson November 28, 2010 (2010-11-28)
After a rough year, Fitz is out of contention for the Fibbies, so he needs to enter as a team with Larry. But before he can make it to the ceremony, Fitz has to help Larry investigate his mysterious past, talk him out of suicide, and eventually get himself kidnapped.
13 13 "Honesty, Integrity and Low Mileage: Part 2" James Genn Sheri Elwood & Tracy Dawson December 5, 2010 (2010-12-05)
After a rough year, Fitz is out of contention for the Fibbies, so he needs to enter as a team with Larry. But before he can make it to the ceremony, Fitz has to help Larry investigate his mysterious past, talk him out of suicide, and eventually get himself kidnapped.

Season 2[edit]

Season 2 premiered on HBO Canada on September 25, 2011.[23]

Total # Episode # Title Directed by Written by Original air date
14 1 "Ass Hickey" James Genn Sheri Elwood September 25, 2011 (2011-09-25)
15 2 "Fucking Memories" Jason Priestley Dennis Heaton September 25, 2011 (2011-09-25)
16 3 "Don of the Differently Abled" Jason Priestley Matt MacLennan October 2, 2011 (2011-10-02)
17 4 "My Own Private OKA" Michael DeCarlo Jeff Detsky & Adrianna Maggs October 9, 2011 (2011-10-09)
18 5 "Pubic Disturbance" James Genn Sheri Elwood & Heidi Gerber October 16, 2011 (2011-10-16)
19 6 "Bring Me the Feet of Dexter Laine" James Genn Dennis Heaton & Kyle Muir October 23, 2011 (2011-10-23)
20 7 "Dysfunctional Family Circus" Jim Allodi Dennis Heaton October 30, 2011 (2011-10-30)
21 8 "Heir of the Dog" Jim Allodi Sheri Elwood November 6, 2011 (2011-11-06)
22 9 "Repo Wedding" Michael DeCarlo Matt MacLennan November 13, 2011 (2011-11-13)
Fitz is arrested for breaking into Sonja's apartment and putting on her lingerie. But this time he is actually innocent - he was drugged and abducted. No one cares. When Chester finds out that Fitz' alibi for the time that Sonja was abducted is Ali he vowes to get Fitz no matter what. Fitz learns that Chester is behind on his car payments and buys the lease and repossesses Chester's car, subsequently revealing the extent of Chester's money woes and corruption. Dot and Chester frame Fitz for the murder of Sonja, planting a bloody knife in Fitz' car.
23 10 "How Do You Say Blowjob in Pennsylvania Dutch?" Shawn Alex Thompson Jeff Detsky November 20, 2011 (2011-11-20)
24 11 "Revel Without Applause" Shawn Alex Thompson Heidi Gerber & Adrianna Maggs November 27, 2011 (2011-11-27)
25 12 "Hell Hath No Drink Limit" Sheri Elwood Sheri Elwood & Dennis Heaton December 4, 2011 (2011-12-04)
26 13 "What the Fuck Is a Beaver Moon?" Sheri Elwood Sheri Elwood & Dennis Heaton December 11, 2011 (2011-12-11)

Season 3[edit]

Season 3 premiered on HBO Canada on September 23, 2012,[24][25]

Total # Episode # Title Directed by Written by Original air date
27 1 "Fuck City Hall" Scott Smith Sheri Elwood September 23, 2012 (2012-09-23)
28 2 "Thirty Percent Less Pulp Fiction" Scott Smith Dennis Heaton September 23, 2012 (2012-09-23)
29 3 "The Virgin Homo-Cide" James Allodi Matt MacLennan September 30, 2012 (2012-09-30)
30 4 "The Rise and Fall of Ethnic Man" James Allodi Derek Schreyer October 7, 2012 (2012-10-07)
31 5 "Fuck the Vote" Shawn Thompson Sheri Elwood & Nikolijne Troubetzkoy October 14, 2012 (2012-10-14)
32 6 "Semen-Gate" Jason Priestley Jeff Detsky October 21, 2012 (2012-10-21)
33 7 "The Totally Legitimate Death of Meghan Fitzpatrick" Shawn Thompson Dennis Heaton October 28, 2012 (2012-10-28)
34 8 "Are You There God? I Need to Speak to Frank" Jason Priestley Sheri Elwood November 4, 2012 (2012-11-04)
35 9 "Teetotal Recall" Scott Smith Jeff Detsky & Matt MacLennan November 11, 2012 (2012-11-11)
36 10 "Apoca' Smokes Now" Scott Smith Dennis Heaton November 18, 2012 (2012-11-18)
37 11 "And Baby Makes... Fuck! Part 1" Sheri Elwood Sheri Elwood & Matt MacLennan November 25, 2012 (2012-11-25)
38 12 "And Baby Makes... Fuck! Part 2" Sheri Elwood Sheri Elwood & Dennis Heaton December 2, 2012 (2012-12-02)

Season 4[edit]

Michael Gross joins the cast for season 4.[26] Season 4 premiered on October 7, 2013, on Movie Central (western Canada) and The Movie Network (eastern Canada).[12]

Total # Episode # Title Directed by Written by Original air date
39 1 "Alice Doesn't Live Here, Anymore" Scott Smith Sheri Elwood October 7, 2013 (2013-10-07)
For his abuses as acting mayor, prison break, and attitude in court the judge rejects Fitz' guilty plea, done in an attempt to avoid his crying son, and gives him a life sentence of parenthood. Fitz then gets the idea to trade his son for drugs and asks Josh to get some drugs and have the police witness the transaction. Fitz then realises his son is a great way to sell cars to women and decides to keep him, just as Josh and the police arrive. Again, the charges are dismissed but Fitz will be subject to visits from child services to ensure he is providing a stable home. He just needs to find a home.
40 2 "Baby's First Brothel" Scott Smith Derek Schreyer October 14, 2013 (2013-10-14)
41 3 "Raising What's-His-Name" James Allodi Matt MacLennan October 21, 2013 (2013-10-21)
42 4 "Pulling a Polanski" James Allodi Nikolijne Troubetzkoy October 28, 2013 (2013-10-28)
43 5 "It's All Fun and Games Until Someone Loses a Fitz" Jason Priestley Josh Saltzman November 4, 2013 (2013-11-04)
44 6 "O-Rigins" Scott Smith Sheri Elwood & Nikolijne Troubetzkoy November 11, 2013 (2013-11-11)
45 7 "The Hard Wiener of Truth" Scott Smith Teleplay by: Matt MacLennan
Story by: Kim Coghill & Matt MacLennan
November 18, 2013 (2013-11-18)
46 8 "Brotherly Love" Jason Priestley Teleplay by: Josh Saltzman & Derek Schreyer
Story by: Derek Schreyer
November 25, 2013 (2013-11-25)
47 9 "A Very Special Fitzmas - Part 1" Derek Filiatrault Teleplay by: Sheri Elwood, Sam Ruano & Derek Schreyer
Story by: Sheri Elwood, Matt MacLennan & Derek Schreyer
December 2, 2013 (2013-12-02)
48 10 "A Very Special Fitzmas - Part 2" Sheri Elwood Sheri Elwood & Derek Schreyer December 9, 2013 (2013-12-09)

Home video releases[edit]

Entertainment One released the first season of Call Me Fitz on DVD in Region 1 on September 27, 2011.[18] It was released on Blu-ray in Region B (The Netherlands) on October 26, 2011.[19] Though not officially released in other regions, the Blu-ray for the season one release is available via import.[27]

Season 2 has been released in region 1 on DVD at March 13, 2012.[21] Entertainment One Benelux, the distributor of the season 1 Blu-ray, has indicated on July 9, 2012 that there are no plans to release season 2 on Blu-ray as well.[28]

Season 1, 2, and 3 can be downloaded from iTunes in SD and HD, but only from the US store.

References[edit]

  1. ^ "Call Me Fritz Media Session Info". Banff World Media Festival (2010). 
  2. ^ Call Me Fritz at the Internet Movie Database
  3. ^ a b c "Call Me Fritz Starts Production". Channel Canada. 2009-11-25. 
  4. ^ Knox, Carsten (2009-12-17). "Jason Priestley on the Fitz". The Coast. 
  5. ^ Vlessing, Etan (November 24, 2009). "Cast grows for 'Call Me Fitz'". Hollywood Reporter. AP. 
  6. ^ "Back In Black". RTÉ. August 11, 2011. Retrieved September 28, 2011. 
  7. ^ Bobbin, Jay (July 21, 2011). "Busy man Jason Priestley on Shannen Doherty, '90210,' 'Haven' and more". Zap2it. Retrieved September 28, 2011. 
  8. ^ Hoegg, Jennifer (September 28, 2010). "Crooner fits Fitz soundtrack". The Kings County Advertiser / The Kings County Register. Retrieved November 20, 2011. 
  9. ^ Tejada, Chloe (October 3, 2013). "Jason Priestley On 'Call Me Fitz' Season 4: He Wants You To Watch It (Even If You've Never Heard Of It)". Huffington Post. Retrieved October 11, 2013. 
  10. ^ "HBO Canada Gets Dirty as Jason Priestley Returns For Season Two of the Gemini-Winning Comedy Call Me Fitz" (Press release). Corus Entertainment. September 12, 2011. Retrieved October 11, 2013. 
  11. ^ "Ring a Ding Ding – Jason Priestley Returns to HBO Canada For Season 3 of Call Me Fitz" (Press release). Corus Entertainment. September 18, 2012. Retrieved October 11, 2013. 
  12. ^ a b "Movie Central and The Movie Network Announce Premiere of Showtime’s MASTERS OF SEX and Season Premiere of Canadian Original Hit-Comedy Series CALL ME FITZ" (Press release). Corus Entertainment. August 15, 2013. Retrieved October 11, 2013. 
  13. ^ Brioux, Bill (July 13, 2011). "Being busy’s no curse for Jason Priestley". Toronto.com. Toronto Star. Retrieved September 28, 2011. 
  14. ^ Weisman, Jon (February 10, 2011). "DirecTV places call on 'Fitz'". Variety. 
  15. ^ "2011 Gemini Awards Presented in Drama, Children’s or Youth, Comedy and Variety Categories" (Press release). Academy of Canadian Cinema & Television. August 31, 2011. Retrieved November 20, 2011. 
  16. ^ Bellafante, Ginia (2011-04-20). "King of Front-Wheel Drive and Back-Seat Romps". The New York Times. 
  17. ^ David, Greg (2010-08-30). "'Call Me Fitz' debuts". TV Guide. Archived from the original on 2010-12-02. Retrieved 2012-08-17. 
  18. ^ a b "Call Me Fitz: The Complete First Season". Amazon.ca. Retrieved September 28, 2011. 
  19. ^ a b "Call Me Fitz: The Complete First Season". freerecordshop.nl. Retrieved October 26, 2011. 
  20. ^ "Call Me Fitz Season 1 on DVD". DVDOrchard.com.au. Retrieved October 11, 2013. 
  21. ^ a b "Call Me Fitz - Season 2: Amazon.com: Jason Priestly: DVD". Amazon.com. Retrieved 2012-02-13. 
  22. ^ "Call Me Fitz: Season 3 / Appelez Moi Fitz: Saison 3 (Bilingual)". Amazon.ca. Retrieved October 11, 2011. 
  23. ^ "HBO Canada Releases Fall Programming Lineup". Broadcast Magazine. Business Information Group. 2011-08-15. 
  24. ^ "HBO Canada 'Call Me Fitz' Schedule (US access restricted)". HBO Canada.  (at Google & Archive.is)
  25. ^ "Call Me Fitz Season 3 Episodes". CallMeFitz.tv. 
  26. ^ "Call Me Fitz begins production on Season 4; welcomes Michael Gross to the cast". Amaze Film + Television. 
  27. ^ "Call Me Fitz - Complete Season 1 - 3-Disc Set (Blu-Ray, Reg.A/B/C Import - Netherlands)". Amazon.com.
  28. ^ Reply on inquiry (Dutch): "Helaas hebben we door tegenvallende resultaten van seizoen 1 moeten besluiten dat we seizoen 2 niet gaan uitbrengen in de Benelux." (English tr.: "Unfortunately, we had disappointing results from season 1, so for season 2, we decided not to release in the Benelux nations."

External links[edit]