Copshop is a suspense action romp set in an isolated police station. Evoking elements of a modern western mixed in the similar vein of the John Carpenter 1976 classic Assault on Precinct 13, the film features Teddy Murretto (Frank Grillo), a con artist with a target on his back who decides to hide out inside a small-town police station. Unfortunately for him, that's not going to stop other would-be assassins from doing everything they can to get to him. I spoke with star Gerard Butler, who plays Bob Viddick, one of the assassins that infiltrate the police station to find himself in lockup at an adjacent cell to his target, and Alexis Louder, the rookie cop trying to make a stand against the ongoing threats.
"I was attracted to the people attached to it when I found out that [director] Joe Carnahan, Gerard Butler, and Frank Grillo were a part of this movie, I got the audition," Louder said. "I was like, 'I don't think they're looking for me' [laughs]." She recalled the intensive physical training for the role of Dep Valerie Young. "I was reading the material and learning that I would have to pick up some skills that I never even thought about, like gunslinging, and I don't have any law enforcement experience. So I got to train with a lieutenant, and I got to train with a gunslinger. That's the pick of the litter, know what I'm saying?"
For Butler, who's had an action veteran best known for his memorable turn as King Leonidas in 300 and for playing US Secret Service Agent Mike Banning in the Has Fallen franchise, it was an easy choice to work with Carnahan. "I just wanted to have some fun," he said. "Basically, this movie is full of colorful, bizarre, and intense characters and a great conceit of a situation in a 70's western movie, but just cool and slick with all the intensity. They're all after one man, one after another coming in, and this young rookie cop caught in the crosshairs between that can lead to a huge amount of tension, excitement, and irreverence. So it kind of had it all. There's a release and some escapism. It's just a lot of fun and excitement. Joe came to me and was like, 'I hear you have this, what do you think? We call to get together. Frank plays Teddy, and you play Viddick.' 'Alright, let's go.'"
Open Road Films and Briarcliff Entertainment's Copshop, which was written by Carnahan, Kurt McLeod, and Mark Williams, also stars Toby Huss, Ryan O'Nan, and Keith Jardine. The film comes to theaters on September 17th.