What happens to copper when it sits too long? It turns blue. Canwest announced yesterday that their long awaited, shot-in-Toronto police drama, Copper, has a new title–Rookie Blue–and will premiere on both Global and ABC June 24th at 9 p.m. For a taste of the action, check out the early trailer for the series, above.
Thirteen episodes of the hour-long drama, produced by Toronto’s E1 Entertainment and Thump Inc., have been in the can for months; production began in June of 2009. News that ABC was partnering up on this venture broke exactly one year ago. Global featured Copper prominently last June at their 2009-2010 press launch.
Since then, the recession hit and over leveraged Canwest lurched into bankruptcy protection. There were rumours at one point that ABC was worried the Canadian private broadcaster might not have the cash flow to hold up their end of the series.
Rookie Blue is one of three shot-in-Toronto police dramas that got picked up by U.S. networks around the time the threat (and eventual occurrence) of a writers’ strike sent broadcasters scurrying for content. CTV was first to market with Flashpoint, a big domestic hit that seems to have slipped into bench status at CBS. CTV finally got fed up waiting for CBS to schedule The Bridge and struck out alone with it right after the Winter Olympics. The police union drama has found a niche on Friday nights, drawing less than Flashpoint enjoyed there but holding a steady 900,000 nonetheless.
Global hopes what used to be called Copper strikes gold in a Thursday at 9 p.m. summer run. The series follows a class of photogenic young recruits fresh out of the police academy. Among the stars are Missy Peregrym (Reaper, Heroes) as Andy McNally, Gregory Smith (Everwood) as Dov Epstein, Charlotte Sullivan (M.V.P.) as Gail Peck, Enuka Okuma (24) as Traci Nash and Travis Milne (My Green House) as Chris Diaz.
Global seems intent on promoting it as One Tree Hill Street Blues. “In this sexy, high-stakes drama,” goes the breathless press release, “the young group of 20-something officers carry big guns and even bigger emotional baggage.” OMG EH!!!
The series hails from Canadian Film Centre alumnus Tassie Cameron (Flashpoint), Ilana Frank (The Eleventh Hour), Noreen Halpern (Hung), John Morayniss (Hung) and David Wellington (The Eleventh Hour).