'Rookie Blue' Set Visit: This Is Not Your Average Cop Show
by Annette Bourdeau, posted Jun 21st 2010 9:27AM
Trying to decide which shows will make it into your summer couch potato sessions? You may want to consider 'Rookie Blue', a new cop show being billed as the 'Grey's Anatomy' for the 5-0. The show follows five rookie officers as they struggle to learn the ins and outs of what it takes to be a cop in the big city. Naturally, emotions run high and sexual tensions mount.
We stopped by the 'Rookie Blue' set, located in a non-descript warehouse on the eastern outskirts of Toronto's downtown core, to scope things out. We found lots of cops (both actors and the real deal) and rat traps big enough to house a family of raccoons. We also tracked down two of the show's stars: Missy Peregrym ('Reaper', 'Heroes'), who plays super-keener Andy McNally, and Gregory Smith ('Everwood'), who plays the wise-cracking thrill-seeker Dov Epstein. The stars filled us in on everything you need to know about 'Rookie Blue'.
This Isn't Your Average Cop Show
You're probably thinking, 'That's just what the world needs. Another cop show.' But before you write off 'Rookie Blue', consider this: The show isn't just another whodunit. "The show is very character-driven," says Peregrym. "This could be procedural, but it's not. It's really about the relationships." Besides, the main character is a woman, which definitely goes against the typical cop-show grain.
These Cops Mess Up. A Lot
Don't expect to see any smooth Caruso-type moves on 'Rookie Blue'. Well, not from the rookies, anyway. "You see all of the ways rookies can mess up. Like pulling a gun out and getting it stuck in the holster," says Smith, adding that his character tends to get into more binds than the others. "He's very smart and capable, but excitement sometimes clouds his judgment."
Workplace Hook-Ups Are Taboo for the Rookies
"Rookies are never supposed to date their training officers," explains Peregrym. "And you cannot date someone who's more than two rankings above you." Since the rookies are all working with different training officers, they don't have a lot of one-on-one time with each other to enable rookie-on-rookie hook-ups (rook-ups?).
Workplace Hook-Ups Will Probably Happen Anyway
Peregrym is coy about whether anyone breaks the rules. But really, how could they not? "Regardless of the rule, it's difficult not to feel a connection with your training officer," she says. Besides, this is TV. Everybody will surely hook up with everybody, right? Peregrym does reveal that her character winds up being torn between two different love interests, but that's all she'll say.
Gregory Smith Doesn't Just Play Sad Guys
Viewers who only know Smith from his role as the brooding Ephram Brown on 'Everwood' are in for a big surprise. "On 'Everwood', my character was a bit melancholy," he says. "This character is more fun and extroverted. When I first read the script, the character cracked me up. I got him. I could complete his sentences."
The Cast Was Trained by Real Cops
"We learned things like how to take down a person and how to draw a weapon," says Peregrym. "It's complicated." The actors also learned about all of the little things cops do. For example, they have a certain stance, and they're constantly aware of their surroundings. "They're always writing everything down," says Smith. "The more I learned, I realized the less I knew."
No Humans Were Harmed During the Filming of 'Rookie Blue'
As of our visit, anyway. "No pranks, no mishaps, no deaths," reports Smith. His biggest fear wasn't of stunt-related injuries, but rather of contracting swine flu [H1N1]. "I'm a hypochondriac. I go through a lot of hand sanitizer," he says.
The Show Was Originally Called 'Copper'
But alas, too many people thought it was about the chemical element, not cops. (OK, we totally made up that explanation. But doesn't it sound like it could be true?)
Random Facts That Have Very Little to do With 'Rookie Blue':
-- Smith's brother is actor Douglas Smith, who plays Benny on 'Big Love'.
-- Peregrym regularly leaves Smith covered in bruises during the cast's weekend basketball games.
-- Smith wants you to follow him on Twitter: @gregorythesmith
'Rookie Blue' premieres Thursday, June 24 at 9PM ET on ABC and Global.