EXCLUSIVE: A decade ago, Criminal Minds executive producer/ showrunner Erica Messer landed her first staff writing job on the ABC spy drama Alias. During her two-season stint on the show, she wrote three episodes, all of them directed by Alias executive producer/director Ken Olin. Now the two get to work together again on an episode of a primetime drama written by Messer, this time with Olin in front of the camera: Actor-turned-director Olin is set to guest star in an upcoming episode of CBS’ Criminal Minds, which will shoot in January and air in February. Fittingly, the episode will mark the drama directing debut of another actor venturing behind the camera, Criminal Minds star Thomas Gibson.
In the episode, the BAU travels to the Eastern Shore of Maryland to investigate the disappearance of two teenage girls. All roads lead to their father, Bruce (Olin), who despite his professed innocence looks more and more guilty with each turn. With time running out, the team uncovers a dark family secret that leads to a shocking conclusion. “I am beyond thrilled to have Ken Olin bring this character to life and can’t wait for Thomas to have a shot behind the camera,” Messer said. Read More »
EXCLUSIVE: This was close: After lengthy and rough negotiations, Criminal Minds star Thomas Gibson just signed a deal to return to the veteran CBS drama only two weeks before it is scheduled to begin production on its upcoming seventh season. I hear Gibson has signed on for two more years in a deal worth mid-to-high seven figures, plus a signing bonus, with the actor more than doubling his previous salary. The difficult negotiations with CBS, CBS Studios and ABC Studios created some jitters in the Criminal Minds writers room as the show’s scribes have been breaking stories and working on scripts for next season for almost a month now without knowing for sure if Gibson’s character, Supervisory Special Agent Aaron Hotchner, will return. With Gibson and Shemar Moore set to come back and Paget Brewster and A.J. Cook rejoining them, Read More »
Exactly one month before CBS’ Criminal Minds is scheduled to start production on its upcoming 7th season, there is still no deal for co-star Thomas Gibson. And word is that talks between the actor and CBS have stalled. That is creating an issue for the series’ writers who convened at the beginning of last week to break stories and work on scripts for next season. Gibson’s character, Supervisory Special Agent Aaron Hotchner, has been key to the show’s storylines, so it would be difficult to map out next season without knowing if he will be back. Expectation is that a deal will eventually be made as the show is looking for cast stability after the drama surrounding co-stars A.J. Cook, Paget Brewster and Rachel Nichols this past season. Despite not having a deal, Gibson has been fulfilling all Criminal Minds obligations. He mingled with international buyers at the LA Screenings and is currently in Europe. Along with Criminal Minds co-star Matthew Gray Gubler he will represent the show at the Monte Carlo TV festival, which starts tomorrow, and will also participate in a press junket in London.
EXCLUSIVE: After lengthy negotiations, Criminal Minds co-star Shemar Moore has closed a deal to return to the CBS crime drama next season. I hear that he will be doubling his salary to about $100,000 an episode, up from just north $50,000 per episode under his old agreement. With Moore set, Thomas Gibson is the only remaining cast member without a deal to return, with negotiations ongoing. Gibson’s reps wouldn’t comment beyond stating that “Thomas would love to continue on Criminal Minds.” While he is the only Criminal Minds actor without a deal, Gibson is not the only cast member whose future on the show is uncertain. Series producer ABC Studios has an option on Paget Brewster, which it can exercise if Brewster’s NBC comedy pilot My Life As an Experiment doesn’t go to series. Judging by industry buzz, that seems to be the case but we will have to wait until NBC makes its pickups in the next two days to know for sure. Joe Mantegna and Matthew Gray Gubler are set to return, as is A.J. Cook, who recently inked a new 2-year deal.
Will Paget Brewster be back on Criminal Minds next season? CBS certainly hopes so, I hear the network recently gave her an offer to return to the crime drama as a full-fledged regular next season. But as part of her modified deal for this season, in which she was asked to scale back her duties as a regular on the show (though she ended up being in every episode so far), Brewster was allowed to do a pilot for next fall, and she is using the opportunity. Brewster has already been approached for 3 Fox comedy pilots. She has comedy history at the network, having co-starred in the underrated Andy Richter Controls the Universe and done voice-over work on American Dad. Brewster is free to do pilots at any network/studio, but because CBS and ABC Studios, which produces Criminal Minds with CBS TV Studios, want her back on the show, I hear CBS, ABC and their studios will be refraining from offering her pilots to not compete with Criminal Minds for her services. “We’d hope that she would stay, she has the option to do so,”CBS’ entertainment president Nina Tassler said at TCA last month.
Because of her situation, I hear Brewster’s storyline on Criminal Minds this season will end with a cliffhanger that will allow the producers to bring her back or write her off if needed.
Brewster is not the only Criminal Minds cast member whose return to the … Read More »