— Henry Czerny and Brian Markinston star in two-hour movie event revealing the man behind 2005 RCMP Tragedy —

On March 3, 2005, James Roszko, a heavily-armed, habitual criminal, ambushed and gunned down four, young RCMP officers near Mayerthorpe, AB. The horrifying event was the RCMP’s greatest loss of life in a single day and left an entire country asking “why”? As the three-year anniversary of the tragedy nears, the question still remains. CTV announced today the premiere of Mayerthorpe, a chilling dramatization of the events leading up to the RCMP massacre, premiering on Sunday, Feb. 10 at 9 p.m. ET, exclusively on CTV (visit to confirm local listings). The two-hour, CTV Original Movie stars Gemini Award-winning actor Henry Czerny (The Tudors, Fido) and Brian Markinson (Charlie Wilson’s War, Eight Days to Live).

Mayerthorpe is the gut-wrenching account of the years, months and days leading up to March 3, 2005 – the date well-known local criminal Jimmy Roszko murdered four RCMP officers on his farm. The movie reveals Roszko’s story, a man who terrorized his community for years with threats and intimidation, yet somehow managed to avoid a lengthy jail sentence despite facing numerous arrests and criminal charges. Mayerthorpe examines the decade-long battle between Roszko (Brian Markinson) and the local RCMP, headed by fictional character Corporal Alex Stanton (Henry Czerny). As their relationship becomes increasingly tense, the movie hurtles towards a violent and bitter conclusion to Roszko’s life of crime – the day that many believed was inevitable.

“Mayerthorpe is thoughtfully written and produced and exquisitely acted,” said Susanne Boyce, President, Creative, Content and Channels, CTV Inc. “The movie is both a poignant tribute to the RCMP officers who died that day as well as a complex portrait of a national tragedy. It will generate many questions that deserve to be answered.”

Mayerthorpe is a testament to the strength and dedication of the families of the four slain officers and the RCMP. Valuable input from family members during the process helped set the tone for the movie to be as accurate as possible, both historically and emotionally.

“This movie is dedicated to the officers and their surviving families,” said Mayerthorpe Executive Producer Tom Cox. “We are honoured to have been given a chance to tell their story, while presenting an honest portrayal about the state of our current justice system.”

Filmed in Calgary and the southern Alberta towns of Irricana and Cochrane in March 2006, Mayerthorpe also stars Diane Ladd (Alice Doesn’t Live Here Anymore, Wild at Heart) as Roszko’s mother; Ben Cotton (Whistler, Taken) as Constable Leo Johnston; Adam MacDonald (The Audrey Hepburn Story, Hysteria) as Constable Peter Schiemann; Ty Olsson (Men in Trees, Flash Gordon) as Constable Brock Myrol; and Gordon Rand (The Path to 9/11, Everest ’82) as Constable Anthony Gordon.

Mayerthorpe is developed and produced by SEVEN24 Films and Slanted Wheel Entertainment in association with CTV. The movie is executive produced by Tom Cox (Brokeback Mountain, The Assassination of Jesse James by the Coward Robert Ford), Jon Slan (Wyatt Earp, Kissinger & Nixon) and Jordy Randall (Brokeback Mountain, The Assassination of Jesse James by the Coward Robert Ford). Rachel Rafelman (Plague City: SARS in Toronto, Alice I Think) is co-executive producer. The screenplay is written by Andrew Wreggitt (Shades of Black, One Dead Indian) and is directed by Ken Girotti (3 Lbs, 24). Kathleen Meek is CTV’s production executive overseeing the movie. Louise Clark is Vice-President, Program Development for CTV. Susanne Boyce is President, Creative, Content and Channels for CTV Inc.

Mayerthorpe is the latest dramatic title from CTV’s Signature Series, CTV’s original movie production strand that features programming dealing with social issues of national importance. Previous titles that have enjoyed critical and ratings success include 2007 Best TV Movie Gemini winner Doomstown, in addition to, among others, Sticks and Stones, Last Exit, Selling Innocence, One Dead Indian, Plague City, Milgaard, The Sheldon Kennedy Story, Tagged: The Jonathan Wamback Story, Prom Queen: The Marc Hall Story and Choice: The Henry Morgentaler Story. Upcoming Signature Series movies slated for broadcast include The Terrorist Next Door. CTV’s Signature Series was established in 1997.

Sunday 10 February / 9:00pm

About the author