So, things are progressing nicely on all project fronts.

A.K.A.: We’re working with Thunderbird Films, developing this one for Bell Media. Paul is presently doing a  pass on the pilot script while I work on the series overview. We have our notes call on the script for episode #2 tomorrow which will give us plenty of time to input any changes and deliver the entire package (both scripts and the overview) late next week.  Hopefully.  I hear that the broadcaster will be making decisions in the month of February so, thankfully, we’ll have our answer soon enough.  Also in contention for a series order are projects by Robert Cooper (Soul Hunter, a super fun show along the lines of a sexier, darker Buffy) and Mark Savela (Echoes, an Earth-based, alien-influenced SF extravaganza with our friend Carl Binder at the creative helm).

The Southern Gothic pilot: We’ve finished a first draft and it’s in Tara’s hands for now.  Once my schedule frees up, probably the week after next, I’ll look to shave five pages from the draft and do a “southern dialogue” polish.

That horror script: Alex and I talked through the story and agreed that I would start writing while he concentrated on Orphan Black.  The plan was to get him 30 pages in February when he would finally have the time to commit to the project.  Then, 30 pages become 40.  Then 50.  Then 60.  The further along I got, the more pieces came together and, by the end, I was on a roll.  On Monday, I completed a first draft of the script that, at 83 pages, is admittedly patchy at points, but I think a very promising start.  Some of the scenes I envisioned kept me up nights, so that’s probably a good sign.

That SF pitch: Late in 2013, we were in Toronto pitching broadcasters a series based on a novel by a popular SF writer.  In February, we take our show back on the road, this time to L.A.

That Super Secret Project: This one promised to be a lot of fun and things were coming together nicely…until some lawyers got involved at which point things ground to a halt.  It’s too bad.  I know it would have been something you all would’ve enjoyed.

Continuing our tour of the Vancouver Hot Chocolate Festival 2014!

Round #4…

1 Kiss ‘N Tell: Kissed by the sun, some things are meant to go together, just like orange and chocolate.  Served with a candied orange peel chocolate creation.

Available at: Gem Chocolates 2029 West 41st Avenue, Vancouver.

The drinking chocolate here was lighter in comparison to some of the other places we tried and the orange flavor very subtle.  The candied orange peel that accompanied the hot chocolate, on the other hand, was bursting with concentrated orange flavor.


Like Feathers & Snow: White Chocolate with warm spices.  Served with a cardamom cookie.

Available at: Beaucoup Bakery  2150 Fir Street (in Kitsilano)

A nice, flavorful, fulsome cup that married to perfection the sweetness of the white chocolate with the redolence of the spices.  The ideal hot chocolate for those stay-in-out-of-the-cold conditions.

The Verdict: Both were nice sipping chocolates but given the choice I’d go back for the…

Winner: Like Feathers & Snow (Beaucoup Bakery).

Round #5…


Five Spice Dragon: To sip on while taking in all Chinatown has to offer – five spice flavoured hot chocolate.  Served with a Fennel Fortune Cookie.

Available at: Soirette Macarons & Tea 1433 West Pender Street, Vancouver. (Coal Harbour)

Going in, I wasn’t at all sure about the chocolate and five spice combo.  And, after having it, I’m still unconvinced.  The actual chocolate base was very nice.


Trio of Chocolate: The base of this hot chocolate is 66% Mokaya chocolate by Michel Cluizel. Served with a disk of 45% Kayambe milk chocolate and white chocolate ice cream.

Available at: Thierry Chocolaterie Patisserie Cafe 1059 Alberni Street

So here’s how it’s supposed to work.  You’re served the white chocolate ice cream in the cup topped by a chocolate lid.  The hot chocolate is served separately for you to pour through the opening in the chocolate lid (see it pictured above).  For some reason, my order was served with the hot chocolate already in the cup so that, by the time I reached the table, then went back and got a spoon they forgot to give me, the ice cream was mostly melted.  Despite this annoying oversight, this was probably the best hot chocolate I’ve had so far.  Decadently indulgent.

Verdict: Alas, despite the service lapse, this one wasn’t even close.

Winner: Trio of Chocolate (Thierry Chocolaterie Patisserie Cafe).

12 down, about 48 to go!

30 thoughts on “January 22, 2014: Projects update! Hot Chocolate Festival Rounds #4 and #5!

  1. Still 48 to go? That sounds daunting. But in a good way!

    Great to hear that the projects are going well, and I assume since the Super Secret Project still seems SS, that it’s still a possibility? I hope so.

  2. I can’t seem to develop a taste for white chocolate. And it seems the dark chocolates are coming out ahead of the game to this point. How are you going to manage to choose a grand champion hot chocolate out of all of the entries, even using an elimination system? Will there be second rounds to re-evaluate things?
    I hope you will be able to give us some real good news on the projects, and I’m happy to see others from the “old gang” are doing well also. Meantime, counting down the days for warmer weather, and a jaunt out to Vegas. I’ll be looking up some of your earlier posts to decide on an eatery or two. Thanks for the daily post.

  3. Joe, Tara deleted her blog site! Pooh!! I was going to ask her to post some of your Southern Gothic script because I just knewww you wouldn’t mind if she did. 😉 Did she move? Is she working? Is she so busy with your script she doesn’t have time for a blog anymore?

  4. @ mannas7mom – RE: Yesterday’s ‘gift’ – THANK YOU!! Such a lovely, misunderstood well-read fing, isn’t he? 🙂


  5. I’ve never had white chocolate in a hot drink before, but I’d definitely try Like Feathers & Snow. Trio of Chocolate would be my first choice though.

  6. That Super Secret Project: This one promised to be a lot of fun and things were coming together nicely…until some lawyers got involved at which point things ground to a halt. It’s too bad. I know it would have been something you all would’ve enjoyed.

    it’s all fun & games, until lawyers get involved. 😕

  7. That Super Secret Project: This one promised to be a lot of fun and things were coming together nicely…until some lawyers got involved at which point things ground to a halt.  It’s too bad.  I know it would have been something you all would’ve enjoyed.

    I hope if this project never gets into production that you will be able to let us know what it was about especially because you were so excited to do it there’s nothing worse being all excited to know about something that is hiped up then never getting to know what it’s about and well there has been a lot of that kind of business going on lately. Anyway good luck.

  8. Good luck with all those projects. Sorry to hear about lawyers tying the super secret one up.

    You know, I actually loathe chocolate and orange as a combination. Both separate are fine, but together? 😛

  9. I could tell by looking at the pictures first that the Trio of Chocolate would be the winner, it has that natural appeal to it and who doesn’t like an overwhelming amount of chocolate in one serving? lol

    Like Feathers & Snow looks good as well. And regarding that Super Secret Project, like with anything life, there are some that just exist to spoil the fun. Here’s hoping one of your project gets the straight to tv order. Been a long time coming.

  10. Very exciting news on the projects! Accept for the lawyers getting involved on one. Shakespeare maybe had it right about them. And now I’m craving hot chocolate and oranges.


  11. Lawyers mucking up the works is like the sun rising every morning. It just never surprises me.

    On everything else: “LIKE” button.

  12. You had me at Chocolate,,, 🙂

    I love the chocolate and orange combo, especially the Aero balls (and bars) that I’ve seen around. They are my kyptonite. I’ll be sure to check these places out, whenever I visit again. 🙂

    Crossing fingers on the project. I know it will be awesome. 🙂


  13. since I can’t actually taste the pictures,,,{someone will invent that someday, smellovision,},ha. thanks for the pictures, drooling optional. 🙂

  14. “do a “southern dialogue” polish”

    Do I remember correctly that you have someone from the south to look over this?

    Sort of related question: Who is responsible for getting the accent correct on a show with distinctive regional dialect? Is it the actor or the showrunner? Most of us from the south can spot a true accent (Matthew McConaughey, Tommy Lee Jones) and the fake ones (the entire cast of Dallas, and most of the cast of Steel Magnolias). Like fingernails on a chalkboard. Huge props to whoever is responsible for the accents on Justified – very well done.

  15. re: That Super Secret Project. I’m guessing “it’s easier to ask for forgiveness than permission” isn’t an effective philosophy when copyright law is involved.

  16. do a “southern dialogue” polish Send it over. I’m busier than a one-legged man at a butt kickin contest today but I’ll git er done.

    Who’s your hot cocoa wingman (or winglady)? Did Akemi get her second wind? Those hot cocoas sound fabulous!!!!!

    Das: Come on down! We are cold in Mississippi but we don’t have snow. Did you put a heating pad out for the feral kitties? I put one out at my mom’s house but I don’t think they found it yet.

  17. Looks like the Transporter has come back to life, reports coming out that Season 2 starts production Feb 26 in Morocco, Canada and the Czech Republic. Sounds expensive.

  18. Amen to chocolate and orange. And chocolate and coconut, and chocalate and chili. Pretty much anything with choclate makes me happy.
    The Trio cup has a lot going on, there’s a lot for me to mess up, but ice cream and hot chocolate sounds tasty.

    All things Norweigan are making me happy this week including those cool team uniforms, so here’s another bit of Norway, courtesy of Frozen:

  19. @Rebecca:

    You might find these funny:

    I agree with you on Steel Magnolias. I would’ve thought that Julia Roberts would have done a better job (being a Georgia girl and all), but maybe they just talk funny in Smyrna? (Before that causes an up-roar, I’m just kidding all you Atlantans 😉 )

    The one thing a lot of these movies miss is the fact that the regional dialects vary all over the south and Southerners can tell the difference between a Louisianan accent and a Georgian accent (heck, I can generally hear the difference between an Atlantan and a Savannan accent.)

    Back to the movies, I just recently watched Midnight in the Garden of Good and Evil (first time believe it or not), and I found Kevin Spacey’s accent distracting. He was supposed to be from the country-side near Savannah (where my family is from), and all I kept hearing was an over-done Raleigh/Richmond mix with an occasional north-east blue-blood Brahmin (think Thurston Howell of Gilligan’s Island) thrown in. It kept throwing me off the dialog. The Savannah accent of the Lawyer was closer to the mark though, even though the actor was Australian.

    My own accent is a muddled mess as a result of a mother from Maryland, a dad from Georgia, and me living in the UK for three years and in the mid west for the past sixteen years. Every time I go back to visit relatives, it only takes me only about 5 minutes to slip back into the accent though (which my wife and kids find hilarious).

  20. Is Beta5 involved in the hot chocolate festival? I can’t imagine they wouldn’t be.

  21. Yes that sux badly. That Super Secret Project sounds interesting. Lawyers ruin everything. If there are any lawyers here, sorry but you knew what you were getting into while in school. lol Actually, most of the time it’s really not the lawyers fault, they are only doing what the people want that hire them…..most of the time. When they are over an estate or empire lol, they get a little freerange on their power displaying. Normally it’s when certain people get greedy is when the lawyers step in and destroy all our fun. Well, thats just my opinion anyways.

  22. ohhh, i forgot, Soul Hunter sounds good. This is a must see for me. Thats if i get to or etc.

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