After ten super years, Smallville‘s run on WB/The CW has come to a close. The first big move for the regular Smallville cast is Erica Durance, AKA Lois Lane, who’s taken a leading role on Canadian pilot Saving Hope.
Saving Hope is about a neonatal doctor (Durance) and her ex, a cancer surgeon in the same Toronto hospital. In an interesting twist, the show will be at least partially told from the perspective of a conscious, paralyzed patient who observes the pair’s discussions on medicine and healthcare topics. The series is based on a series of articles written in Canadian periodical The Globe and Mail.
Durance has played Superman’s leading lady for the last seven years. Before landing the Smallville Lois Lane role, she played one-off single characters on shows like Stargate: SG-1, Andromeda and The Collector, as well as bit parts in movies like House of the Dead.
Of course, her clout has risen somewhat after a seven-year run in a high-profile series. Later this year Durance will appear in the indie feel-good movie Sophie, and she’s worked on several TV movies in the last few years including a role as Marian in Syfy’s Beyond Sherwood Forrest. She’s listed in a small role in the movie version of Adult Swim’s Tim and Eric. Durance is a native Canadian.
Durance isn’t the first Smallville alumni to find TV work as the long-running series closes. Michael Rosenbaum, who returned for the series finale in his role as Lex Luthor, played Dutch the jock on Fox’s Breaking In. Too bad the series won’t be returning for a second year. It got one season more than Kristen Kruek’s latest project, 17th Precinct, a fantasy/cop show from sci-fi producer Ronald D. Moore. NBC declined to pick up the series after producing the pilot.
Perhaps most significantly, Marvel Studios is eying to bring the Man of Steel himself over the comic book divide. Rumor has it that they’re looking at Tom Welling for a major role in an upcoming superhero movie.
Fans of Durance can take heart in the knowledge that it’s not uncommon for Canadian TV shows to cross the border. Current shows like ABC’s Rookie Blue (produced by Ilana Frank, who is also producing Saving Hope), CBS’s Flashpoint and Syfy’s Sanctuary are northern imports.
Production on the Saving Hope pilot will begin later this month, though CTV has not yet ordered an initial season.
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