Review of "Klondike" on Discovery Channel From The TV MegaSite
 

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"Klondike" review by Sundi 1/14/14
Premieres Monday January 20 9/8c on The Discovery Channel

Look who’s coming out strong with a their first scripted mini-series: Discovery Channel. Klondike is the four part series about a young man seeking his fortune in gold in the Yukon of Northern Canada. Since this is a three-parter, airing on January 20th, I’ve only watched the first two installments, and I will do my best not to write any spoilers -- just recommendations (and I do recommend it),

 

Based on the Charlotte Gray novel, Gold Diggers: Striking it Rich in the Klondike, the story follows two childhood friends Bill and Epstein as they make their way North to find their futures. Along the way they find themselves in and out of trouble with various characters of various repute -- including a very ruggedly handsome Sam Shepard playing the priest, Father Judge; a weasley Tim Roth playing The Count; and the plucky go-getter Belinda Mulroney, played by Abbie Cornish. You’ll recognize Bill as Ned Stark of Game of Thrones, but Augusus Prevy’s portrayal of Byron Epstein is memorable and remarkable in its own right, and he is the standout star of the parts I’ve seen, although I disagree wholeheartedly with the direction the writers took him in.

 

Klondike, from executive producer Ridley Scott, is absolutely in line with Discovery Channel’s mission to explore man’s relationship with nature, and the series does an excellent job in documenting the wondrous and the agonizing moments of that relationship. The sweeping scenes of the Canadian mountains and valleys are enough to carry me through some of the more stilted pieces of dialogue and the suspense is thick as the characters battle the elements just as ferociously as any flesh-and-blood movie-villain.

 

The Klondike may be the leading character in this series, but the human players are doing a good enough job to keep me invested, especially Epstein, but Bill is interesting too as he balances the conflict of man versus nature AND man versus man. This movie is a huge time investment, especially in a moment when there is so much good on TV right now, but I think its well worth it. Discovery Channel has carved out a particular niche in the viewership and I think this show will do well . If you enjoy the nonscripted series Gold Rush, and have even the least bit of interest in history, you will most certainly find this series appealing.

 

MORE INFORMATION:

KLONDIKE – Discovery Channel’s first ever scripted mini-series, based on Charlotte Gray’s book Gold Diggers: Striking It Rich in the Klondike. KLONDIKE brings to life the tale about six strangers and their collective fight for survival and wealth in a small, frontier town in the remote Klondike. KLONDIKE is a co-production between Discovery, Entertainment One Television (eOne) and Nomadic Pictures in association with Scott Free Television.

ACADEMY AWARD NOMINEE SAM SHEPARD TO HEADLINE THE CAST OF DISCOVERY’S FIRST SCRIPTED MINI-SERIES ‘KLONDIKE’

(LOS ANGELES) – It was announced today that Academy Award nominated actor Sam Shepard will be joining the cast of Discovery Channel’s first-ever, scripted mini-series KLONDIKE (wt). Shepard will be playing the role of Father Judge. Shepard was nominated for an Academy Award for his role in Philip Kaufman’s The Right Stuff. He is also a screenwriter, director and Pulitzer Prize-winning playwright for his 1979 three-act play “Buried Alive.” This year, Shepard will star in Jeff Nichols’ film, “Mud”, opposite Matthew McConaughey and Reese Witherspoon, as well as in “August: Osage County” opposite Meryl Streep, Julia Roberts and Abigail Breslin and Scott Cooper’s “Out Of The Furnace” opposite Christian Bale and Zoe Saldana. Other notable film credits include “Baby Boom,” “Steel Magnolias”, “Defenseless” and “Thunderheart.” His notable television films and miniseries have included Larry McMurtry’s “Streets of Laredo,”” Lily Dale,” “Purgatory,” “Dash and Lilly” (which brought him both Golden Globe and Emmy nominations for his performance as writer Dashiell Hammett), “One Kill,” “Wild Geese,” and “Ruffian.”

The mini-series, previously announced last year, is based on Charlotte Gray's book Gold Diggers: Striking It Rich in the Klondike, and brings to life the tale about six strangers and their collective fight for survival and wealth in a small, frontier town in the remote Klondike. KLONDIKE is a co-production between Discovery, Entertainment One (eOne), and Nomadic Pictures, in association with Scott Free Productions. International distribution is handled by eOne Television. Paul Scheuring ("Prison Break," "A Man Apart") is the primary writer and will serve as Executive Producer, along with Ridley Scott and David W. Zucker; as well as John Morayniss and Michael Rosenberg for eOne. Eileen O'Neill and Dolores Gavin will serve as Executive Producers for Discovery.

KLONDIKE follows the lives of two childhood best friends, Bill and Epstein, in the late 1890s as they undertake the next, gold rush capital in the untamed Yukon Territory. This man-versus-nature tale places our heroes in a land full of undiscovered wealth, but ravaged by harsh conditions, unpredictable weather and desperate, dangerous characters including greedy businessmen, seductive courtesans and native tribes witnessing the destruction of their people and land by opportunistic entrepreneurs.

Production began production last week under the direction of Simon Cellan Jones ("Generation Kill,", "Treme") on location in Alberta, Canada. The series will be produced with assistance of the Government of Alberta, Alberta Film Development Program.

RICHARD MADDEN, TIM BLAKE NELSON, MARTON CSOKAS AND CONOR LESLIE TO JOIN THE CAST OF DISCOVERY’S FIRST SCRIPTED MINI-SERIES ‘KLONDIKE’

(LOS ANGELES) – It was announced today that Richard Madden, Tim Blake Nelson, Marton Csokas and Conor Leslie will be joining the cast of Discovery Channel’s first-ever, scripted mini-series KLONDIKE (wt).

Richard Madden will be playing the role of Bill Haskell. Madden comes to KLONDIKE after recently finishing production on the upcoming feature film "A Promise" with Rebecca Hall. Additionally, Madden can be seen reprising his starring role as Robb Stark in the third season of HBO’s "Game of Thrones."

Tim Blake Nelson will be playing the role of Meekor. Nelson joins the cast of KLONDIKE after recently shooting upcoming feature film “As I Lay Dying.” Nelson has had notable roles in such iconic films as “O Brother, Where Art Thou?,” “Lincoln,” and “The Incredible Hulk.”

Martin Csokas will be playing the role of Steele. Csokas most recently starred as the male lead opposite Thandie Newton Entertainment One's upcoming drama series for DIRECTV, Rogue. Csokas just wrapped a role in Robert Rodriguez's "Sin City 2" and is about to shoot a supporting part in "The Amazing Spiderman 2." He can be seen next in Darren Aronofsky's "Noah." Csokas' previous feature work includes "The Debt" and "Alice In Wonderland" as well as "The Lord of The Rings" trilogy.

Conor Leslie will be playing the role of Sabine. Leslie comes to KLONDIKE after recently finishing production on the upcoming film “Parts Per Billion.” Recent projects include roles on “90210,” “No Ordinary Family” and “Law & Order: Criminal Intent.”

ACADEMY AWARD NOMINATED ACTOR TIM ROTH TO JOIN THE CAST OF DISCOVERY’S FIRST SCRIPTED MINI-SERIES ‘KLONDIKE’

(LOS ANGELES) – It was announced today that Academy Award nominated actor Tim Roth will be joining the cast of Discovery Channel’s first-ever, scripted mini-series KLONDIKE (wt), playing the role of The Count. Roth was nominated for both the Academy Award and the Golden Globe for Best Supporting Actor in 1995 for “Rob Roy.” Roth is well known for notable roles in such films as “Pulp Fiction,” “Reservoir Dogs,” “Four Rooms,” “The Incredible Hulk, “Planet of the Apes,” and “Dark Water,” and he recently starred on the FOX series “Lie to Me.” He will next be seen starring in the film “Broken,” and opposite Nicole Kidman in “Grace of Monaco.”

The mini-series, previously announced last year, is based on Charlotte Gray's book Gold Diggers: Striking It Rich in the Klondike, and brings to life the tale about six strangers and their collective fight for survival and wealth in a small, frontier town in the remote Klondike. KLONDIKE is a co-production between Discovery, Entertainment One (eOne), and Nomadic Pictures, in association with Scott Free Productions. International distribution is handled by eOne Television. Paul Scheuring ("Prison Break," "A Man Apart") is the primary writer and will serve as Executive Producer, along with Ridley Scott and David W. Zucker; as well as John Morayniss and Michael Rosenberg for eOne. Eileen O'Neill and Dolores Gavin will serve as Executive Producers for Discovery.


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