Currently taping their fourth season, The Four on Access 7 Regina is a one-hour talk show featuring four native women discussing issues from residential schools, hot topics, online dating, and ‘yes’ even orgasms.
The Four originated from Bevann Fox, who’s been the regular host for all four seasons.
“I had an idea to create a show with all Aboriginal women discussing native topics,” Fox said. “I turn on the television, and I usually see negative Aboriginal stories, so I thought, we have successful Aboriginal business men and women, there are First Nations that are doing tremendous work, and I wanted to discuss these issues, and topics that are not normally discussed with other First Nations women.”
So in 2012, Fox wrote up a proposal of her idea and mailed it to a number of networks both in Canada and the United States, all of which turned her down.
“They said they were not looking for a talk show or interested. I then dreaded having to tell the other women that my idea would probably not happen.”
Around this time a friend asked her, ‘why not try the local Access Communications 7 Channel in Regina?’
“So I sent my proposal to Access Communications, and almost immediately Wade Peterson, the Community Programming Manager, phoned me and said he was interested! – of course I was super excited and we’ve been on air since 2013, now taping our fourth season and I’m excited about the whole process within the TV industry.”
First Nations Drum spoke with Wade Peterson on the ratings of The Four on Access 7 Regina.
“The ratings have always been really good from the first season till this current season. We continue to have an amazing following,” said Peterson. “The uniqueness of the women and the interesting topics they wanted to discuss is what made my decision to proceed with making the show.”
Peterson added that the viewership feedback has been tremendous from social media and word of mouth as well as other media outlets.
Fox’s day job is a Child & Family Services worker with Yorkton Tribal Council, and her co-hosts are Wendy White Bear, a research coordinator with the University of Regina, Ashley Norton, prevention manager, and Pam Rock Thunder, an administration clerk.
Fox says she would like to tackle the tough issues like Missing and Murdered Indigenous Women and Residential Schools, just to name a few.
First Nations Drum contacted APTN, one of the networks Fox approached with her idea, and asked them why the network rejected her proposal.
“APTN has annual requirements for programming based on its CRTC Conditions of Licence,” said Jean La Rose, APTN CEO. “Every year, series acquired or licensed by the networks are assessed on our programming needs. APTN welcomes program production proposals from independent Aboriginal Producers across Canada. The Requests for proposals that the network puts out a few times a year detail our requirements and sometimes very interesting proposals that do not reflect our needs are offered.”
The APTN CEO continued her reference to Access 7 airing The Four.
“The network is pleased to see other broadcasters offering a voice to Aboriginal Peoples in various regions of Canada. APTN has limited resources but the network is working to increase those resources to offer broader opportunities to our producers and expand the range and regional content offered by the network.”
Peterson says that he thinks The Four has potential for nation-wide broadcast.
“The sky is the limit for these amazing women, they have great conversions and stories which makes for great television.”
Interested in catching a show? You can tune in to The Four on Access 7 in Regina at 7pm every Tuesday.