I really didn’t see this coming: USA Network has decided to renew the Dick Wolf-produced series Law & Order: Criminal Intent for a 10th season--but only after securing the return of original cast member Vincent D’Onofrio as its star.
As you’ll undoubtedly remember, D’Onofrio and his CI co-star, Kathryn Erbe, left the program last March after a dramatic two-part episode, just as the ninth season was getting into gear. Jeff Goldblum, who had already put in two years rotating with D’Onofrio as the series’ lead, remained with CI and was given a new partner, English actress Saffron Burrows. But in August Goldblum announced suddenly that he too would depart the show, and there was speculation that this would mean the end of what I always thought was the best of the Law & Order spin-offs. Apparently, though, those fears were unfounded.
According to Variety, USA Network is already committed to an eight-episode, 10th and final season for L&O: CI, and discussions are underway to see whether previous cast members, especially Erbe, can be coaxed back for more. There’s no word yet on the status of newcomers Burrows and Mary Elizabeth Mastrantonio, who joined the cast last season as Captain Zoe Callas, but we’ll keep you informed as we learn more.
(Hat tip to Vince Keenan.)