In the old days of television, if your show got canceled that was the end of the line. It was time to go and look for another gig because, rest assured, the series wasn’t going to come back in any shape or form. With broadcast networks as the gatekeeper, if a show got the ax then that was just the death knell. But we live in a new day and age of content with canceled series finding all kinds of ways to get back into the mix. That’s the case with Law & Order which is slated to begin a new story more than a decade after going off the air. And Deadline is reporting that they have found the lead for the next iteration of the series. Jeffrey Donovan will star in the show’s revival.
Casting a new lead in the Law & Order revival series is just another piece in the rather surprising news that this series is coming back at all. Though it has spawned a number of spin-offs over the years, the original series was rather unceremoniously canceled back in 2010. That followed a 20-year run on NBC which, at times, had it ranked in the top-10 of most-watched programs around. It was averaging close to 20 million viewers per episode in the late-90s and early-2000s. But near the end of its original run, the ratings had really taken a dive and it was even moved into the graveyard Friday evening time slot before ultimately getting canceled.
Though the original Law & Order series was canceled more than 10 years ago, the name still rings out on the airwaves. That’s because the show spawned six different spin-off series each with the Law & Order branding. There’s Special Victims Unit, Criminal Intent, Trial By Jury, Los Angeles, True Crime, and Organized Crime. The latter just released this year with Christopher Meloni returning to his Elliot Stabler role in the franchise.
Jeffrey Donovan will bring his talent over to this Law & Order revival series after starring in a number of different shows and movies, including seven seasons of Burn Notice. He’s also had roles in Fargo as well as Guy Ritchie’s Wrath of Man alongside Jason Statham. His character in this new series will be a new one for the franchise and apparently, he will playing an NYPD detective in the story. According to the Deadline reporting, original series stars Sam Waterson and Anthony Anderson are also in talks to rejoin the series.
It stands to reason that Jeffrey Donovan and company will pick right up where the original left off in terms of formula. The show told its story in two parts, from both the eyes of those investigating crimes and those who prosecute them. It was part of their tagline after all. It’s a simplistic, though effective format that lent itself to bringing real-world (ish) type cases that were, as they put it, “ripped from the headlines”. We are sure to get more casting news on this revival Law & Order series now that they have rounded out the star of the show.