Toronto actor Ronnie Rowe Jr. stars in the highly-anticipated feature film Black Cop set to make its world premiere at this year’s Toronto International Film Festival (TIFF). The film will have press and industry screenings on September 11th at 7:15 PM and September 14th at 4:45 PM with public screenings on September 12th at 9:30 PM, September 14th at 7:00 PM and September 17th at 11:45 AM at the Scotiabank Theatre (259 Richmond St W).
Directed by Cory Bowles (Trailer Park Boys), Black Cop is a searing political satire following the story of a black police officer, played by Ronnie Rowe Jr., who seeks revenge after being egregiously profiled and assaulted by his colleagues.
Black Cop is just one of many names slapped on Ronnie Rowe Jr.’s character. He also gets called a sellout, a rogue police officer, a dirty cop, a bogeyman, and an avenger. Sick and tired of witnessing — and living — the systematic abuse of black people, Black Cop rejects peaceful advocacy, instead inflicting on the white oppressor what the oppressor has inflicted on his people: the violent abuse of power. By consciously and calculatingly taking control of the terror rather than submitting to it, Black Cop reveals its protagonist as a conundrum.
By visualizing a stark shift in power, Black Cop asks why some Canadians continue to be treated with suspicion, fear, and violence by authorities who have sworn to serve and protect. It pointedly asks us to assess how problematic it can be to expect the ostracized to become defenders of the system that created the imbalance. Movements, anger, and solutions have many faces: peaceful and, at times, vengeful. Black Cop is a thoughtful and energizing satire, a powerful confrontation to the status quo, and an embodiment of film as the ultimate agent of conversation.
Born and raised in Toronto, Ontario, Ronnie Rowe Jr. first found his love for acting in elementary school doing plays like Grease, The Sound of Music and Oliver Twist. His first big break came when he was cast as one of the leads in the Woody Harrelson play A Bullet for Adolf. Shortly after, he entered the small screen landing a recurring role on the hit NBC series The Firm.
Since then, Ronnie Rowe Jr. has appeared in several major film and television productions including recurring roles in The Strain (FX) and Dark Matter (Syfy) and parts on Riftworld Chronicles (CBC), Murdoch Mysteries (City), Saving Hope (CTV), and The Expanse (Syfy).Showcasing his multi-faceted acting chops, Ronnie also most recently wrapped up a Canadian tour of the highly-acclaimed theatre production of Kim’s Convenience, which follows the journey of a fractured but loving Korean family confronting the future and forgiving the past. Ronnie had the opportunity to play four different characters in the play.
Outside of acting Ronnie Rowe Jr. enjoys staying in shape and spending time with his Old English Bulldog, Deuce.
We had an opportunity to speak with Ronnie about Black Cop. Check out the interview below.
Hi, Ronnie! We are excited for your feature film “Black Cop.” It will make a premiere at the Toronto International Film Festival. Tell about your character and role.
Black Cop is a satire political drama written and directed by Cory Bowles. It focuses on a Black officer that is torn between his duty and his community, after being profiled Black Cop decides to take revenge into his own hands and begins to profile the profiler.
How did you prepare to play your character?
I have some close family friends that are police officers and asked as many questions as I could, I watched videos that were circulating (ie. Eric Garner) to see how some of these officers were handling situations. I also went back and watched Training Day a few times, thank you Mr. Washington. After acquiring information from the personal experiences of friends and the videos floating around on the internet, I created Black Cop.
What should the audience expect?
The audience can expect a gritty character driven roller coaster, it may make some people uncomfortable, but will present a different perspective.
We sense a moral to this story. What would you say it is?
I don’t know if there is a specific moral to the message of the story, but I feel the film aids as a channel to identify with a different perspective and to possibly start a conversation, that at one time wasn’t considered.
When can people watch the film?
I am excited to say that the film will be premiering at this year’s prestigious Toronto International Film Festival. For those who will be attending the festival this year, you can see it screening at the Scotiabank Theatre in Toronto (259 Richmond St West) on September 12th at 9:30 p.m., September 14th at 7 p.m., and September 17th at 11:45 a.m. Also, stay tuned as the film makes its festival rounds this Fall.
Thank you for chatting with us about “Black Cop.” Is there anything else you would like to add that we didn’t cover?
I have a few projects in the works that I can’t announce yet but make sure you follow me for all the latest news!
Feature Image Credit: Shaun Benson.