Local TV series gets the nod

Geoff & The Ninja made history when it became the first TV series to ever film all its episodes in Prince George.

It makes more history on April 3 when it becomes the biggest awards contender this city's screen arts industry has ever had in a single awards show. Geoff & The Ninja (G&TN) was nominated in six categories at the 10th Annual Indie Series Awards.

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The show is on the shortlist for: Best Directing - Comedy, Best Editing, Best Visual Effects, Best Costume Design, Best Makeup, and Best Original Score.

"In all, there are 45 nominated series from around the globe: United States, Canada, Australia, Indie and the United Kingdom," said the awards show organizers. "Crystal trophies will be presented to the winners during a gala ceremony on April 3 at The Colony Theatre in Los Angeles. The two-day celebration includes a launch party, red carpet reception, press walk, presentation ceremony and official after party."

Jon Chuby, the series co-creator and co-star (he plays Geoff while fellow co-creator Jeremy Abbott plays the eponymous ninja) said he and several others associated with the show would personally attend the ceremonies.

"This is a Hollywood-level event. We're not going to miss it," Chuby said. "Realistically, I didn't expect us to get to any level like this. These nominations were really unexpected, so that's great. We're pretty stoked."

He noted that some of the other projects in the running for an Indie Series Award included shows involving James Franco, Lou Diamond Phillips, Marina Sirtis, and many other seasoned professionals of the screen arts industry.

Alongside Chuby and Abbott on the G&TN nominee sheet include Prince George musician Curtis Abriel for his original score, Cori Ramsay and Caitlin Bennett for their costume design work, and Sabrina Mori for makeup.

G&TN can be seen online via the show's official website or the OptikTV YouTube channel. After getting initial development opportunities through the CBC Comedy Coup incubator program and the StoryHive indie development program, Chuby and Abbott gradually worked their concept into a fully functional series. It was shown on the Telus television network OptikTV, making it the one and only series ever conceived of in Prince George to make it to full production while still based within the city.

The show has also become an official participant in three screen arts festivals around the world.

Now, with the first set of episodes complete and out in the world, it is time for the production team to attempt new life for G&TN. That is partially why they are attending the Indie Series Awards in person.

"We're trying to get the show picked up by a larger network, and extend the show," Chuby said. "If you get into these rooms, hopefully you get interest from people with money to invest in making more episodes, and picked up for distribution so more people see the show. We are getting our pitches ready."

Anyone wishing to help can do so by simply watching each episode and sharing them on social media, so the production team can show ever stronger audience numbers to potential executive producers and distributors.

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