'Rookie Blue' producer salutes 'Flashpoint' as a 'game-changer'

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"Rookie Blue" soon makes its return, but another Canadian-made police show that has had success in the U.S. recently ended.

And both share a "parent."

Tassie Cameron was a co-executive producer and writer of  "Flashpoint" -- which included Amy Jo Johnson in its cast, and had American runs on CBS and ION -- before becoming a creator and executive producer of the Missy Peregrym-starring "Rookie Blue," which starts its fourth ABC season Thursday, May 23.

"I have such a soft spot for that show," Cameron tells Zap2it of her "Flashpoint" experience, "having been involved in the first year and having worked with Mark (Ellis) and Stephanie (Morgenstern, its creator-producers) closely. It really was a game-changer for Canadian television.

"Certainly, I don't know that there would have been a 'Rookie Blue' without a 'Flashpoint,'" adds Cameron. "I feel grateful, and I feel that I learned a lot. They made a very gracious exit, and did it on their own terms and did it beautifully. I really respect that."

The third season of "Rookie Blue" and the final season of "Flashpoint" both make their DVD debuts next Tuesday (May 7). Cameron likes to think the "Flashpoint" group of actors, also including Enrico Colantoni ( "Veronica Mars") and Hugh Dillon (who's joining AMC's "The Killing"), affected her choice of "Rookie Blue" hires: "That was just a fantastic cast. They're all going on to do great things, but I know it was a very emotional time for all those guys when it was ending."

Also continuing as "Rookie Blue's" head writer -- she wrote the upcoming season premiere, which follows Officers Andy McNally and Nick Collins (Peregrym, Peter Mooney) into the undercover job that the end of Season 3 set up -- Cameron hopes the show will come back strong enough to earn another renewal very early on, as it has the past couple of summers.

"We love getting renewed as early as possible," Cameron muses. "It puts everybody's mind at ease, we all know we still have a job, and we can honestly start thinking about what the next season will hold. It's lovely to get an early renewal, and I hope that happens again. If it doesn't, we've suffered through worse ... but I'm hopeful."
Photo/Video credit: ABC/CBS