an avonlea christmas

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Timothy
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Re: an avonlea christmas

Post by Timothy » Fri Mar 12, 2010 11:41 pm

Yeah, there seemed to be some excitement when the Odyssey channel (later renamed Hallmark Channel) started showing RTA in syndication. That is, until Odyssey replaced the series with Bewitched episodes.

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Re: an avonlea christmas

Post by midknight » Sat Mar 13, 2010 4:12 pm

What got me think when I saw the movie, is why did Jasper from missing the boat? There has to be a really good reason for him to miss it. He absent-minded but that bad. Also it seems like he would of found a way to make to Avonlea to be with family even after missing the boat.

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Re: an avonlea christmas

Post by hannikan » Sat Mar 13, 2010 7:31 pm

I agree midknight I thought Jasper would find a way to come to Avonlea, too. He's supposed to be very busy doing work for the military though. I wish they'd have said he was just too busy and was not able to come for the visit instead of him missing the boat.
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Timothy
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Re: an avonlea christmas

Post by Timothy » Sun Mar 14, 2010 11:21 am

Top five alternate Raymond Storey ideas for Jasper not appearing in the movie:

1. On his way to the boat, Jasper gets lost in the snow. Surprisingly, he is rescued by Peg Bowen who convinces him to believe in his dreams.

2. His evil twin cousin Jeremiah steals his ticket, travels to Avonlea and impersonates Wilfred Aimsley in a fiendish plan to ruin the Christmas musical.

3. He was side-tracked by a colleague who has an interest in bats. Olivia believes Jasper is cheating on her. Mishap ensues.

4. Jasper slips on a banana and falls face first on a pie before hitting his head on a ladder (because you know Jasper is clumsy and it will provide comic relief in the absence of a substantial plot). Jasper has emergency back surgery but doesn't tell Olivia because he doesn't want her to worry about the medical costs. Olivia thinks that Jasper doesn't love her anymore. Eulalie Bugle overhears her and believe the Dales are getting a divorce.

5. After missing the boat, Jasper and Sara hold a magic lantern show to raise money for a new ticket. After the show, jasper is sprayed by a skunk and accidently burns the money in the fireplace.

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midknight
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Re: an avonlea christmas

Post by midknight » Sun Mar 14, 2010 4:21 pm

lol, 4 made me laugh the most.

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Re: an avonlea christmas

Post by StoryJan » Sun Mar 14, 2010 4:55 pm

I agree; I thought missing the boat was a horrible excuse for Jasper not being in the movie. Jasper may have been a little eccentric, but Olivia was always the top priority in his life. Tim, I had to laugh over your list, especially how little you changed your #4 story. It would fit in perfectly with HCMK! Here are my suggestions for Raymond Storey, each with its own Christmas spin.

1. Jasper actually made the boat... but unfortunately for him, it was the Lusitania, and Jasper is presumed dead. Knowing in her heart that he is still alive, Olivia mounts a desperate search for him, scouring the countryside, and ultimately finding him in Halifax suffering from amnesia. She brings him back to Avonlea hoping his memory will return, but sadly, it doesn't. They agree to part ways after the holidays. Trying to make one last perfect Christmas for Monty and Alecia, they bring the family to the Avonlea Christmas musical where the sound of Little Hubble's voice awakens Jasper's memory. It's a Christmas miracle!

2. Overworked, an exhausted Jasper contemplates throwing himself off the boat until his guardian angel, who mysteriously resembles Gourney McDonald, agrees to show him what life would have been like without him. We see the tell-tale signs... a sign revealing "Welcome to Dunnsville," the abandoned cannery, an unhappy Olivia trying to cope living with a senile Hetty, Sara Stanley being ostracized by the entire community, and most frighteningly of all, a wanted poster of Davey Keith, the vilest fugitive on the island! Jasper screams in terror: "Take me back, Gourney! I want to live again!" It's a Christmas miracle!

3. Before Jasper can board the boat, he encounters a mysterious stranger... a short, jolly type wearing a red suit. Unfortunately, his sled is broken, and he needs the help of an inventor who thinks outside the box. After fixing Santa's sleigh, Jasper accidentally trips, hits his head, and falls into the sleigh unconscious. He awakens on the Island of Misfit toys where, among other things, he has been tasked with fixing a "Charlie in the Box." After repairing all of the misfit toys, Santa gives Jasper a parachute and drops him over the village on Christmas night. He arrives in Avonlea just in time for Christmas. It's a Christmas miracle!

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Re: an avonlea christmas

Post by hannikan » Sun Mar 14, 2010 8:41 pm

Well, I didn't think it was unthinkable that Jasper would miss the boat because there were several times when he completely failed to remember important things. Most notably not telling Olivia about his relatives coming in Tug of War and forgetting to pick her up from somewhere in that same episode. Also in After the Honeymoon he forgets to mention that he's offered to have Sidney Carver stay with them. Jasper was forgetful to the point of being unintentionally inconsiderate at times. But I would rather have had him be too busy with his work. And I would have loved to see him come to Avonlea instead of merely sending a gift on Christmas. But since the actor was unavailable that wasn't possible.

Timothy and StoryJan your ideas are hilarious!! Very entertaining :lol:
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Re: an avonlea christmas

Post by Miss Lewis » Sun Mar 14, 2010 11:14 pm

This thread reveals a lot about why Avonlea Christmas movie turned out how it did. I had no idea that there was funding conflicts between CBC and Sullivan's company. I've heard of the Sullivan and Disney conflicts before but I'm not bothered by those conflicts. If The Disney Company hadn’t picked up RTA, some of us might not be here (I only saw RTA on the Disney Channel). The CBC conflicts with Sullivan sound like they were worst then the Disney channel conflicts--because in the rearranging of pay to the RTA cast, Sullivan lost Michel Mahonen (Gus Pike). If CBC is to blame for that—that’s a huge thing.

I wonder if Kelvin Sullivan can be difficult to work with. I wonder this because he had disagreements with two big networks--CBC and Disney. I love Sullivan's work on RTA--please don't doubt that. I would love to see a better RTA reunion movie made. I just wonder if Kelvin Sullivan isn’t easy to get along with or if he has trouble explaining his vision for a show/movie to CBC or Disney. I don’t know—I am just wondering out loud. Anybody have thoughts on this?

As to the Jasper missing the boat top 5 spin-offs, My vote is for Timothy's #4--I could just see Jasper in deathly pain trying to fend off a desperate wife--who wants a hug and be shown that she is still loved.

I also like StoryJan #2—I love the image of a senile Hetty, Ostracized Sara and criminal Davey Keith .Was there an episode where Jasper saved Davy from a life of crime? Or is it because Sara, who now is an outcast, never got a chance to teach Davy how to read? :)

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Re: an avonlea christmas

Post by Shelly » Mon Mar 15, 2010 12:23 pm

Miss Lewis wrote:I wonder if Kevin Sullivan can be difficult to work with. I wonder this because he had disagreements with two big networks--CBC and Disney. I love Sullivan's work on RTA--please don't doubt that. I would love to see a better RTA reunion movie made. I just wonder if Kevin Sullivan isn’t easy to get along with or if he has trouble explaining his vision for a show/movie to CBC or Disney. I don’t know—I am just wondering out loud. Anybody have thoughts on this?
FTFY. :)

It's known that Megan Follows has had a bit of history with KS at least in between the making of Anne 2 and Under the Piano, and that she was unhappy with how Anne 3 turned out. Also, and I believe Ruth (muppets) mentioned this on the old boards, she and a few others met Zach Bennett before AvCon 2005; he said to them that KS was a bit of a taskmaster at times. Based on all that, it certainly seems KS can be/is/was hard to work for. (I say "work for" because, at least IMO, he is a fairly amiable chap (I've met him); but that wouldn't necessarily translate over to a working relationship.)
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Re: an avonlea christmas

Post by hannikan » Mon Mar 15, 2010 5:56 pm

Well, I am sure that some of those network exes are no piece of cake to work with either. They can certainly have egos and agendas that I am sure were not always easy to work with. Considering all the people involved in making RTA, of course things were going to come up from time to time. Lally Cadeau mentioned in the S5 behind the scenes interview that there were no prima donas on set but that people still could get on each other's nerves from time to time. They're human. And to borrow from Mag Ruffman's tongue in cheek assessment of the actors, "it's not like we don't all have big personalities or anything." Esp once the actors were invested in the characters (such as Megan was with Anne) they had their own visions of what they wanted to see happen with them. I am sure this came into play with Zach playing Felix, as well. And many times they were given freedom to negotiate their ideas. After awhile of hashing out the process I'm sure it could get taxing and tiring. I think from our vantage point it would be pretty silly to try to point fingers at anyone as being more difficult to work with since we've never worked with them ourselves.
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Re: an avonlea christmas

Post by midknight » Tue Mar 16, 2010 6:57 pm

I have to say I really do like storyjan's number 1. Also even thought Jasper had forgotten to tell Olivia things and did forget to pick her up that one time, it seems like he would find some way to remember something as important as return to his home town. Also knowing Jasper he probably by that time had come up with some ingenious way to remember things. (Perhaps the post-it note)

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Re: an avonlea christmas

Post by Timothy » Wed Mar 17, 2010 1:35 pm

The discussion of Sullivan's working relations over the years with countless individuals and situations goes beyond the scope of this thread, An Avonlea Christmas. I don't mind tangents every now and then, but this particular one could go on for pages and pages.

However, in the instance concerning 'Happy Christmas Miss King,' CBC did not act professionally, in my opinion. They promised Sullivan their support of the film, and after Sullivan invested millions, they broke their side of the deal and ultimately hurt the whole production. This could have also soured future RTA production possibilities as well.

After seven years of high ratings for CBC, the company had no problem letting the last on-screen farewell for RTA sink like the Maid of Calais. If I was treated in this manner, I too would be difficult to work with.

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Re: an avonlea christmas

Post by HistoryMiner » Fri Apr 02, 2010 4:28 pm

Interesting... I did not know there were funding issues for the Avonlea reunion movie, though I wouldn't be surprised. It was at that time that Sullivan was also very angry at CBC for delaying commitment to the third season of WAMB, which led to a long delay and missing a deadline for Telefilm Canada.

That explains a lot about why the movie seemed to be slapped together, and why the Gus and Felix storyline was removed, which would have made the movie so much better. Which was pretty short-sighted and stupid of the CBC, considering what a success RtA had been as a series. They probably assumed it would pull in viewership no matter what the movie would have been like.

Still, with almost the entire cast of RtA returning, it was still a mistake of Sullivan to approve a script which totally sidelined Felix, unless Zachary Bennett was not available for much filming. I know he loved "Momento Mori" and maybe that's why he was also quite open to this script?

Raymond Storey can be a very awesome writer and showrunner, though it didn't show in this movie.

And Shelly, I love your TWOP-style recap. :lol:

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Timothy
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Re: an avonlea christmas

Post by Timothy » Sat Apr 03, 2010 3:40 pm

That's a very good observation about CBC delaying the third season of WAMB, HistoryMiner. The budget cuts came at the same time before productions of HCMK and WAMB.

I can see what you mean about Felix being sidelined in HCMK. I think Sullivan wanted the big dramatic payoff at the end though where Felix miraclously returns, and that unfortunately meant that he had to be missing in action for most of the movie. I thought he later rehashed this dramatic scene concept in Anne3, where Gilbert is thought to be missing behind enemy lines.

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Re: an avonlea christmas

Post by Shelly » Sat Apr 03, 2010 3:59 pm

HistoryMiner wrote:That explains a lot about why the movie seemed to be slapped together, and why the Gus and Felix storyline was removed, which would have made the movie so much better. Which was pretty short-sighted and stupid of the CBC, considering what a success RtA had been as a series. They probably assumed it would pull in viewership no matter what the movie would have been like.

Still, with almost the entire cast of RtA returning, it was still a mistake of Sullivan to approve a script which totally sidelined Felix, unless Zachary Bennett was not available for much filming.
I'd say Zach was definitely available; it was just a case of his role being reduced significantly due to lack of Gus/MM.
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