Entertainment programming can be a delicate dance, writing characters an audience can identify with no matter what situation they find themselves in.
Creating something with enough action and minimal violence to attract tweens, teens and adult audiences is a challenge within itself. The Hallmark Channel’s original movie "The Hunters" meets that challenge and then some, providing a fun ride for both young and older viewers.
The film airs at 7 p.m. on Friday, and I had the chance to screen it earlier this week.
The first chase scene of the film had a couple on a motorcycle having a conversation about their children, and it reminded me of the TV show "CHiPs." In reality, we know that everyone on a motorcycle in the real world would have to shout over the noise of wind and motors – especially being chased by the police. I have to remind myself this is all done through the magic of TV land.
I’m glad I did that early, because I needed to be in that mindset to enjoy the journey at the center of "The Hunters," which is more about growing up with the appreciation of family more than it is jet setting across the globe in search of fairy tale-based artifacts.
Emmy award nominee and veteran actor Victor Graber plays the former artifact hunter and protector who is hell-bent on using the magical properties of the items to gain power to rule the world.
The main characters are the Flynn brothers who team up with their parent’s assistant to go after shards of the magic mirror of "Snow White" fame in order to find and rescue their parent who went missing after complications on a recent mission.
Playing Paxton and the younger Tripp are Robbie Amell ("The Tomorrow People") and Keenan Tracy ("Bates Motel"). The brothers are compelled into the treasure-hunting mission after learning their parents’ origin from fellow hunter and Paxton’s love interest Dylan, played by actress Alexa Vega.
Vega is familiar with the family-friendly adventure film genre, playing Carmen Cortez, the older sister in the "Spy Kids" franchise of films.
Rounding out the cast are Emmy-nominated Michelle Forbes ("In Treatment," "True Blood") and Dan Payne ("Stargate Atlantis") portraying parents Jordyn and Carter Flynn.
Based on the comic book "Mirror, Mirror" by Joshua Williamson, "The Hunters" is a fun, family film that will entertain children and their parents with an open ending leaving room for sequels in the future. The presentation is part of Hallmark’s Walden Family Theater series – bonus points if you can spot the product placements by sponsors Walmart and P&G.
LIFE AFTER "SHARK TANK" KILL: R Dub!, the creator of the radio syndicated "Sunday Night Slow Jams" was one of the few innovators and inventors that were able to get on air with the investing sharks of ABC’s "Shark Tank."
While walking away without the $75,000 he was seeking to take his concept further, he was able to gain enough promotion and exposure from simply being on the show.
"Being one of 40,000 applicants to appear on Shark Tank was a dream-come-true for me!" R Dub! told Kevin Carter and Steve Resnik, who write the RAMP newsletter for radio and music professionals.
"The opportunity to market the Slow Jams brand to 6.5 million potential new customers and meet the Sharks while appearing on one of my favorite television shows was one of the best experiences of my life. I'm so happy that the folks at Jackson and Associates understand the value of the Slow Jams brand and community of listeners across America – and the power and effectiveness of radio."
The Jackson and Associates that R Dub! mentions here is his newest investor, who gave the host a large cardboard check for $75,000. I’m guessing they did a real money transfer as well, as I don’t know of many banks or credit unions that would deposit funds from an over-sized check used for photo ops.
Media is bombarding us everywhere.
Instead of sheltering his brain from the onslaught, Steve embraces the news stories, entertainment, billboards, blogs, talk shows and everything in between.
The former writer, editor and producer in TV, radio, Web and newspapers, will be talking about what media does in our community and how it shapes who we are and what we do.