Kelli Giddish & Cole Hauser recently spoke to the press about their new drama, Chase, on NBC at 10/9c. Kelli Giddish (Past Life) stars as U.S. Marshal Annie Frost, a cowboy boot-wearing deputy whose sharp mind and unique Texas upbringing help her track down violent criminals on the run. Starring as the members of Frost’s elite team are Cole Hauser (K-Ville) as Jimmy Godfrey, an East Texas kid who never grew up and is a true American cowboy; Amaury Nolasco (Prison Break) who plays Marco Martinez, a good intelligence guy who loves to talk; and Rose Rollins (The L Word), who portrays Daisy Ogbaa, a weapons/tactical specialist and a woman of few words. Rounding out the cast is Jesse Metcalfe (Desperate Housewives), who stars as Luke Watson, the fresh-faced newcomer whose Washington, D.C. upbringing did little to prepare him for the Lone Star State.
Jump with me to read some of the great questions and answers from the call.
Kelli Giddish on her character, Annie Frost, being the female Jack Bauer (24) and how she wants to see the character develop.
Kelli Giddish: She’s got the same kick-butt attitude as some other characters we’ve seen that are great action stars with different as – the show takes place in Texas and she’s a Texas girl and she’s also coming from a family that… Her father is a criminal, an outstanding fugitive. So she’s a girl that ended up on the right side of the law, and to see how that happened and why she’s so committed to her job, I think is going to be a really interesting journey.
Cole Hauser on playing a true Texan cowboy and keeping that role fresh:
Cole Hauser: Well, first and foremost I’ve never played a Texan before and I think what’s so cool about Texas and Texans is they’re very proud of the state. So, this is something that I’ve always wanted to just play kind of a throwback American character. He’s not this typical kind for redneck who is from the country. He’s a well-rounded smart guy who grew up in the country but moved on to being a Marshal and is very proud of that.
Jennifer Johnson, Kelli & Cole on Chase being more reminiscent of action movies of the past, without all the special effects, and doing their own stunts:
Jennifer Johnson: It’s getting back to basics. It’s getting back to the heroes chasing the criminals. Good guys versus bad guys. Everything is so complicated these days. This is the return of the American hero.
Kelli: I thought of like Bruce Willis in Die Hard, you know, and how much – I grew up with that and how much we all loved him. When I go to work I’ve got adrenalin pumping through my veins and I think for sure that’s going to show up on film.
Cole: Keep in mind that everything that you see, up until this point, for the most part, is us. And whether it’s me driving a car or jumping out of a six-story window or Kelli hanging out the side of an airplane as it’s about to take off or jumping off a bridge. I mean, these are all things that you don’t see on television, the actors doing. So I think what makes this show special is not only the mental side of it and finding the criminal and getting into the criminals mind but also the fact that you’re seeing two actors kind of in their prime who are athletes doing a lot of amazing stunt work with a great stunt coordinator and Eric Norris.
When I asked JJ about their timeslot competition (Castle, Hawaii Five-0) and whether she was nervous about it:
Jennifer: I don’t feel nervous about it at all. We’ve talked about this amongst ourselves and I’m dedicated to always writing the best shows I can and I’m not going to write this show to compete with them. In my opinion we are a bit of counter-programming. You know, our tone is different and no – we’ll just always make the best show that we can. And NBC has expressed – we know what our competition is for sure and you know, we’re going to be patient and wait for viewers to find us.
When asked about why US Marshalls and not DEA or FBI, JJ responded:
Jennifer: Two reasons. I mean, the first is as I started doing research about fugitives, something unexpected to me was that it’s the US Marshalls who are really in charge of finding them. They have become in the past, particularly in the past ten years, they have become the experts in finding fugitives. So in other words, if the Houston Police Department has a fugitive, and that’s anybody who’ committed a crime who’s disappeared for more than an hour is a fugitive. They always now turn to the US Marshalls because, like I said, they’ve become the experts. They’ve set up regional offices around the country. Texas is practically a country in and of itself so they have the Gulf Coast Office Task Force which is what our show is based upon. They are one of the busiest task forces in America. But they are the experts on catching fugitives and so that’s why I gravitated to the US Marshalls. And then the second aspect was I wanted to set it Texas and these guys, like Kelli said, really are cowboys. They are on the ground. They, in a sense, each US Marshall is their own boss when they are out in the field. So its very much about the cowboy mentality, the go-get ‘em mentality, the forming a posse mentality to go get the bad guy. Forming a posse is actually something US Marshalls can do. They can deputize citizens to form a posse and that’s, you know, – forming a posse that phrase comes from US Marshalls in the old west doing just that.
When asked whether we’ll see much of family or romantic relationships, JJ answered:
Jennifer: We do have a love interest coming in for Kelli (Eddie Cibrian, CSI: Miami, Third Watch) and we’re also going to meet Jimmy’s girlfriend (Natalie) in upcoming episodes. But very much, the main focus is the task force as a family in and of itself and then how those outside relationships complicate what they are doing on the job.
Following up on that, CH talked about the relationship between Annie and his character of Jimmy:
Cole: The relationship between Jimmy and Annie, you know, there’s a professional love for each other which I actually think is really cool. I think that at times, Jimmy feels obligated to really watch her back, to help her in many ways that – she is so driven at times that pulling the reins back on her is something that she feels he needs to do. And I think that its something that you do for your partner, you know, if you care for them; and these two people do. They’ve been together, like we said, for a long time and they know of each other’s tendencies. But also there are days where Annie’s going through what she’s going through and Jimmy notices why and he acts accordingly to it. Everybody’s asking the question, is there going to be romance? And, you know what? Maybe they will, maybe but at the same time, is that now? It is two people that love their jobs and respect and love each other in a professional way.