We first met Detective Jay Halstead on ‘Chicago Fire,’ as the cop who fell for Dawson. However, he’s starring in ‘Chicago P.D.,’ premiering on Jan. 8 — and he’s spilling all the dirty little secrets of the job exclusively to HollywoodLife.com!
Jesse Lee Soffer, 29, is ready to take on the streets of Chicago! On the new NBC series Chicago P.D. he plays Jay, a “good cop” — but not necessarily in the way you’re thinking.
Jesse Lee Soffer Takes On ‘Chicago P.D.
While we already know that Hank Voight (Jason Beghe) played the villain on Chicago Fire, it doesn’t necessarily mean that the cops in his Intelligence Unit are also bad cops.
“I think Jay’s a good cop — not necessarily in the sense of dirty or not, but that he knows how to be a good cop. He gets the job done,” Jesse told HollywoodLife.com in an exclusive interview before the premiere. “He was in the military and then he became a police officer. There was some heavy stuff that happened in his past which pushed him toward becoming a cop. He’s seen some rough things back in the day. He’s a little cocky — not in a bad way, he just knows he’s good at his job and he can be a little aggressive.”
So, does that mean that Voight won’t be a bad cop this time?
“I think there is value in ambiguity,” he continued. “You know, he’s a cop. Sometimes, he does what he has to do to get the job done and you might disagree with it! There’s no black & white line, there’s no right or wrong, its all very gray, which I think is an interesting story for us to tell. So, I don’t know [if he's a villain], it’s up the viewers.”
While it was a gritty experience — the training and filming was not easy, he said the toughest part was making it a different kind of show. The cast and crew wanted it to be as real as possible.
“We’re really trying to make a show that’s honest and stays true to the real lives of Chicago PD,” he told us.
Will Jesse’s Character Date Sophia Bush?
Jesse met Sophia Bush and Patrick Flueger, another star of Chicago P.D. when filming a pilot together for a show that didn’t get picked up last February. Now, his character plays the partner of Detective Erin Lindsay, Sophia’s character.
“[She's] so awesome, we’re buds! It’s like a dream come true being able to work with friends,” he told us. However, in the preview we did see the look the partners were giving each other and after all the love stories going on in Chicago Fire, we had to ask — will it turn into more?
“What can I tell you? If two young, healthy people are to ride in a car all day together as partners, and they’re attracted to each other, it could become a problem,” he teased. Well, that means a lot of fun for us!
While Jesse and Sophia’s characters have already been introduced briefly on Fire, we were excited to learn that they’re going to continue with the crossovers.
“All the time!” he said excitedly, which makes sense since the whole family shoots in Chicago — we can’t wait to see it cross over more!
Creator Dick Wolf also produced Law & Order: SVU, and they’ll even be doing a little corssover with that show as well — which explains Jesse’s photo with Ice-T!
So, what I’ll leave you with is this — a question that Jesse says will be a blurred line on the series: “How far do you go and where do morals come in? How far can you push the envelope to do what you think is right?”
Are you excited to see the new Chicago drama? Tune in to Chicago P.D.’s series premiere on NBC on Wednesday, Jan. 7 at 10 PM! Then let me know what you thought! Don’t forget to follow Jesse on Twitter and Instagram, as well as Chicago P.D.’s official Instagram!
— Emily Longeretta