Diggstown’s Final Day « Very Emotional », Says Creator

CBC show creator Diggstown says it wasn’t hard to decide to end the show after four seasons, but that didn’t make it any less emotional to say goodbye to the cast and to the team.

Floyd Kane’s made-in-Atlantic Canadian legal drama premiered in 2018 and tackled everything from a lack of diversity in surfing to birth scares and land title issues. The show’s finale will air on November 16.

Diggstown follows a successful corporate lawyer – Marcy Diggs, played by Vinessa Antoine – who changes careers and decides to work in a legal aid office in Dartmouth.

Kane, the show’s creator, showrunner and executive producer, spoke with Information morning host Portia Clark on the past four seasons and beyond.

Their conversation has been edited for clarity and length.

You can listen to the full interview here:

Information Morning – N.S.8:50 amIt’s a wrap! Diggstown creator talks about the show’s final season

Four years ago, a landmark show called Diggstown began production in Nova Scotia and made its television debut. Since then, the series has covered everything from birth alerts to land title issues. Now Diggstown is marking its final season. Hear from executive producer Floyd Kane.

I wonder how you feel even hearing me say this will be the last season?

To be honest, I haven’t really thought about this being the last season yet. We’re still doing the show so… I’m going to miss the annual cast meeting and obviously go home and spend four months in the Maritimes doing the show.

Was it hard to make the decision even though you’re not really focusing on it right now?

No. I feel like as a writer I like the idea of ​​wanting to do something else and Diggstown [takes up] my year. You know, we start writing in February and we finish posting the series in November so that doesn’t leave me much time to do anything else.

Vinessa Antoine as Marcie Diggs in season 3 of Diggstown. (Diggstown Season 3)

You’ve been with the same group of people who are part of the cast and many of the crew for those four years, what was their reaction?

It was very moving. The last day of filming was incredibly emotional. There was this weird energy… We actually had the whole Diggs family, all the actors who play [Vinessa Antoine’s] her parents and sister were all there on the last day of filming, and we ended up packing Vinessa in the middle of the day. We were shooting it at my best friend’s house in Musquodoboit Harbour, so the energy was very emotional. Lots of tears.

When you look at the last four seasons, I mean, you’ve innovated in so many different ways with this show. What stands out to you as what you are most proud of?

I’m very proud of the fact that the show empowered people who hadn’t been in the industry before – or hadn’t been in the industry the way they knew they could – to have the opportunity to participate and achieve these goals and take their career to the next level.

Specifically, I’m talking about directors like Sharon Lewis or Cory Bowles, who hadn’t done a prime time TV episode and are now working on Law and order and other shows in the United States. People who never had the chance to work in a hair department, who now run hair departments. That’s the thing I’m really proud of in terms of the show.

floyd kane portia clark
Floyd Kane chats with CBC Information Morning host Portia Clark on set in 2019. (Robert Short/CBC)

There were challenges getting the crews together, I guess. Can you tell us about some of them and why the show ended up, for this last season, being mainly filmed in Prince Edward Island?

When we came back to Halifax to shoot Diggstown in the first season, like we were the only show. We had a clear runway so we could access the crew. And by the time we got to season three, I just remember thinking, wow, there’s four shows here. And we lose the team in the middle, like in the last two weeks of our show, to go work on another show.

This season has been extremely difficult, but artistically I think this season really stands out.– Floyd Kane, creator of Diggstown

I have to find a way to lock down the people who work on our show and figure out how we can do that. And, you know, we went to Charlottetown to shoot for a day in season three and after having a lot of conversations, we decided, OK well, let’s create a story that will take place in all four Atlantic provinces and we’re sort of splitting the filming between Prince Edward Island and Nova Scotia.

I will say this season has been extremely difficult, but artistically I think this season really stands out. Like last night’s episode, the season premiere, I’m extremely pleased with…and I think these episodes just keep getting better as we approach the finale…I had always decided that I wanted to direct the last episode of the series regardless of when it happened. And I just think the way we ended the show was perfect.

Do you have any idea where you’ll be moving next and what stories we can look forward to hearing from you next?

I love the legal genre, so I’m busy developing a new legal show, which I’m really excited about. I’m also working on a detective series that I developed, so hopefully we’ll get the chance to tell that story.

For more stories about the experiences of Black Canadians — from anti-Black racism to stories of success within the Black community — check out Being Black in Canada, a CBC project that Black Canadians can be proud of. You can read more stories here.

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(Radio Canada)


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