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From Clucking Like a Chicken to Enrico Colantoni: Cracked Creator's Season 1 Highlights

Cracked creator Calum de Hartog splits his time between working on his CBC cop drama and a day-job with the Toronto Police, but the balancing act has been worth it.

The hectic year of this first-time TV producer is about to hit a milestone. Cracked airs its season finale on CBC tonight at 9 p.m./9:30 NT.

"There's a sense of accomplishment because you've done a season," de Hartog told CBC Live - though he added he's now "hoping and itching to dig into the next season."

Still, before he throws himself into developing the story of Det. Aidan Black and crew for Season 2, de Hartog took the time to share some highlights from the making of Cracked Season 1.

The short version?

"It was a trip."

For the longer version, read on.

-- CBC

CBC Live: As a real Toronto police officer, which storyline from this season has rung truest to you?

Calum de Hartog:
Oof. That's a tough one. I wish I could say there was one in particular, but they all kind of weave in and out. It's not so much the story as it is your [experiences] make it into the characters and their actions, I guess.

CBC Live: On the flipside, then, have there been any moments that seemed outlandish? Like something you've never experienced?

CD: Clucking like a chicken comes to mind. Yeah. That was a bit of a unique spin, but you run with it.

CBC Live: You're on set quite a bit, right?


CBC Live: What was the coolest scene to watch being filmed?

CD: The billboard scene, from "Rocket Man," I loved all the stuff on the rooftop.

Watch "Rocket Man" below. In the scene, which opens the episode, Det. Aidan Black (David Sutcliffe) tries to talk down a man perched on a downtown billboard.

CBC Live: Why was that?

CD: You know what, I think it was just because it was so close to an experience that I had, basically. Again, it was just really neat, kind of surreal.

CBC Live: How did it compare to what you experienced in real life?

CD: Well. (Chuckles) Obviously, the stakes are significantly different. ... They accomplished what they wanted to do and they made it feel relatable, but you know, unless you're out there doing it, it's sometimes hard to replicate exactly how it went down. In Season 2, though? We're going to push it a little bit further.

CBC Live: Cracked has attracted a bunch of great guest stars. Do you have a favourite story about any of them?

CD: You know what, I really enjoyed Enrico Colantoni. I'd worked with his brother, ironically, about 15 years ago.

CBC Live: How?

CD: He's a cop! I mean, we'd crossed paths. And Enrico's a fantastic actor, so people like that, you just love to sit and watch - watch them do their thing. Really fascinating to watch him, he really embraced that character, made it his own.

Enrico Colantoni in a scene from Cracked. -- CBC

CBC Live: Did you wind up talking to him about working with his brother?

CD: Nah, not really, but it was definitely a neat intro into our conversation. And the fact that I did do Flashpoint for real.

CBC Live: What's your favourite episode of Cracked?

CD: I really love the inquest one, "Aidan's Inquest." I thought it was really challenging. It was a nice little challenge to do an episode that all takes place essentially in one place. Creatively, that was a neat challenge. Episode 3 ("What We Can't See"), I thought was stylistically my favourite and it was also a great experience working with Bruce McDonald. Just such a visionary director and really gave it a look.

Watch "Inquest" and "What We Can't See" below:

CBC Live: What can you say about the finale?

I would say that one of our characters is going to get called out, you know, in a dangerous position and they're going to step up to the plate and they're going to do it with conviction.

CBC Live: Sounds like it could be a cliffhanger.

Yeah. It is. For sure. And it's pretty emotional, pretty heavy, and pretty visceral.

Cracked's Season 1 finale airs on CBC Tuesday, April 16 at 9 p.m./9:30 NT.

(This interview was edited and condensed.)


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