'Law & Order: Criminal Intent' renewed, Vincent D’Onofrio returning
USA Network announced Tuesday that "Law & Order: Criminal Intent" will come back for its 10th — and final — season.
The network has ordered eight episodes of the spinoff. Eight episodes more than most people were expecting. After the announcement that NBC gave its longstanding “Law & Order” the ax after 21 seasons, it seemed the practiced spinoff was destined for the same fate on USA.
“We have been the fortunate caretakers of this legendary series, and we plan to give it the world-class farewell it so richly deserves," said Jeff Wachtel, president original programming at USA, in a statement. "Dick and his team promise to create a major event for television with incredible surprises. The plan is for this to be the series finale, but with a Dick Wolf franchise, one really never knows until it’s over.”
And one never really knows whom to expect to helm the show. The crime procedural hasn’t been without its share of casting changes — especially in the male lead department. Vincent D’Onofrio reduced his workload and alternated episodes with Chris Noth, who was then replaced by Jeff Goldblum, who then took over the series full time when D'Onofrio left but who now will not be returning himself. Oh, but D’Onofrio is back to reprise his role as Detective Robert Goren. Confused yet?
"I want to thank Bonnie [Hammer, president of NBC Universal Cable] and Jeff [Watchel] for bringing 'Criminal Intent' back for a tenth season,” Wolf said in a statement. “Only time will tell if this is a fond farewell or a renaissance for Detective Robert Goren but everyone both here and in New York is ecstatic about going back to work on a show that’s a passion for all of us. Signed, Brett Favre."
No premiere date has been set. But the “Law & Order” franchise is never really on vacation. One of its many spinoffs, “Law & Order: Los Angeles,” is scheduled to premiere Wednesday on NBC.
— Yvonne Villarreal
Photo: Vincent D’Onofrio. Credit: Getty Images.