Saturday, April 16, 2011

A.J.Cook back on Criminal Minds for 2 years!

From AJ Cook:

AJ Cook
JJ's back! Just signed 2 year deal. Excited to work with cast and crew again. Thanks to all of you!

and from Deadline Hollywood

EXCLUSIVE: JJ fans can rejoice. After a week of negotiations, A.J. Cook just closed a two-year deal to return to CBS' drama Criminal Minds as a regular. She will guest star in the series' sixth season finale on May 18 before re-joining the show full-time in the fall.

Cook departed Criminal Minds after the end of last season when her option was not picked up, stirring outcry among fans of the show. She appeared in the first two episodes of this season to wrap the storyline of her character JJ, who was transferred from the BAU to a job at the Pentagon. Cook then returned for the last episode of the season for co-star Paget Brewster, which aired last month. If Brewster's NBC comedy pilot My Life As An Experiment does not go to series, she will also likely return to Criminal Minds in the fall since series' producer ABC Studios has an option on her. Cook's return to Criminal Minds does not bode well for newly minted regular Rachel Nichols, who was brought in to fill the void left by Cook's departure. Meanwhile, ABC Studios is yet to close new deals with original cast members Thomas Gibson and Shemar Moore for next season, with negotiations continuing.

Paradigm-repped Cook was offered to return to Criminal Minds late last week after the series' producers recently came up with ideas for JJ for next season. Despite her exit from the show, Cook and her character continued to be extremely popular among Criminal Minds fans. Heading into Season 7, Criminal Minds will be run solely by executive producer Erica Messer following the recent departures of executive producers Ed Bernero and Simon Mirren, who have served as co-showrunners with her this season.

Thursday, April 14, 2011

Chat Transcript with Criminal Minds Writers Rick Dunkel and Kim Harrison

Here is the last part of our chat with writers Rick Dunkel and Kim Harrison. Thanks to Rick and Kim for taking the time out of their busy schedule to chat with us!

Sir_Bedivere: so is there anything that you can tell us about the seaon 6 finale? even a little tiny crumb. will it be a cliffhanger again this year?
Rick: Not the kind you're used to
Rick: It's different. The case wraps up but there is uncertainty in the air.
Rick: It's hard to explain.
Rick: It's brilliant.
Kimberly_Harrison: I think you said it... it's about the uncertainty.

guinevere: with the writer shake-ups we have had in recent seasons, will both of you be back next season?
Rick: Yes we will.
Kimberly_Harrison: yes, both of us will be back.

Guest1: Who's the focus in the finale; Morgan was the focus in Season 5?
Sir_Bedivere: we like that news
Rick: It's more of a team focus this time.
Kimberly_Harrison: The focus is on the "team"

Sir_Bedivere: how about Breen and Erica. any news on them?
Rick: They will both be here.
Kimberly_Harrison: They'll be returning.

Guest1: Will Erica Messer continue as the lone showrunner?
Rick: Yes, we are very sad to see Simon leave but very excited for what he's doing.
Kimberly_Harrison: Yes, Erica Messer will be running things

Sir_Bedivere: Are there any other writers from this season staying on?
Kimberly_Harrison: Janine
Sir_Bedivere: we are all 100% positive that there will be a Season 7 but when will it be announced?
Kimberly_Harrison: Not sure.. Soon I hope
Rick: Might not be until upfronts...

Guest2: I hope they can get AJ back
Rick: It's certainly been a roller coaster year, hasn't it!?!
Rick: In an ideal world we'd have a roster of 8 main cast members... Bring Prentiss and JJ back, and see how Seaver grows.
Rick: Whatever happens, it's been interesting... I miss Paget a lot and obviously I want her back, but writing the Ian Doyle arc has been my favorite thing to do
Rick: It's allowed us to go outside the box in ways we didn't think possible before.
Rick: 100 gave us that, too.

Criminal Minds Final Ratings for Episode 6.21 'The Stranger'

Criminal Minds did great once again against tough competition from American Idol, here are the ratings: 13.585 million viewers and demo 18-49: 3.5

Congratulations to cast, crew and writers Rick Dunkel and Kim Harrison!

Criminal Minds Press release for Episode 6.22 'Out of the Light'


Jeff Meek ("As the World Turns") Guest Stars as Suspect Robert Bremmer

"Out of the Light" - The BAU is called to a North Carolina mountain town after a woman is found badly injured and another is missing, and they discover that these two are not the only victims, on CRIMINAL MINDS, Wednesday, May 4 (9:00-10:00 PM, ET/PT) on the CBS Television Network. Jeff Meek ("As the World Turns") guest stars as suspect Robert Bremmer.

David Rossi................................ Joe Mantegna
Aaron Hotchner....................... Thomas Gibson
Derek Morgan.......................... Shemar Moore
Dr. Spencer Reid........... Matthew Gray Gubler
Penelope Garcia.................. Kirsten Vangsness
Ashley Seaver........................... Rachel Nichols

Jack Hotchner............................. Cade Owens
Angela Proctor....................... Amanda Yarosh
Robert Bremmer.............................. Jeff Meek
Rose..................................... Mandy Kowalski
Dr. Boyd.................. Michael Anthony Rawlins
Sheriff Montell............................ John Kapelos
Marcus Talbot............................. Time Winters
Linda Owens.............................. Caitlin Dulany
Don Owens................................. Lennie Loftin
Claire Proctor...................... Melissa Bickerton
Bruce Proctor............................. Bruce Nozick
Marcy Owens............................. Cody Weiant
Nurse...................................... Jennifer Weston
Police Officer............................... Brian Durkin
Henry...................................... Andre Hotchko
Waitress................................... Angie Kibiloski

WRITTEN BY: Roger Hedden
DIRECTED BY: Doug Aarniokoski

Wednesday, April 13, 2011

AJ Cook in Talk to Comeback to Criminal Minds!

EXCLUSIVE: Potential great news for Criminal Minds fans: co-star A.J. Cook is in talks to return to the CBS crime drama next season as a regular, and she may be joined by Paget Brewster. Meanwhile, executive producer Ed Bernero, who has run the series since the start, is leaving, with another Criminal Minds veteran, executive producer Erica Messer, taking over as the sole showrunner.

Cook departed Criminal Minds after the end of last season when her option was not picked up, stirring outcry among fans of the show. She appeared in the first 2 episodes of this season to wrap the storyline of her character JJ who was transferred from the BAU to a job at the Pentagon. Cook then returned for the last episode (for now) of co-star Paget Brewster, which aired last month. Speaking of Brewster, she is filming a comedy pilot for NBC, My Life As an Experiment, and will continue on the project if it goes to series. But if it doesn't, I hear Criminal Minds producers ABC Studios/CBS Studios have an option on her for the show and, if they exercises it as many expect, that would bring the cast of the show back to the way it was at the end of last season. The developments, especially Cook's potential return to Criminal Minds, do not bode well for newly minted regular Rachel Nichols who was brought in to fill the void left by Cook's departure. Cook got an offer to return to Criminal Minds late last week after the series' producers recently came up with ideas for JJ for next season. Despite her exit from the show, Cook and her character continue to be extremely popular among Criminal Minds fans.

While things look bright for the female portion of the Criminal Minds cast, things are still murky on the male side, with stars Thomas Gibson and Shemar Moore still not signed for next season. Talks are underway with the two actors whose deals are up at the end of this season.

As for Bernero, he told the cast and crew of his departure last night. There had been speculation that he would leave the series at the end of the season, especially after Simon Mirren and Messer were tapped as co-showrunners alongside him in October and then he got his script Partners picked up to pilot at ABC in January. In February, Mirren told CBS he was leaving the show at the end of the season for a deal at Sony, leaving the well regarded Messer as the clear successor. "I'm leaving the show in the capable hands of Erica Messer," Bernero said last night, adding, "I'll still be around." A new episode of Criminal Minds airs tonight.

Source: Deadline Hollywood

Criminal Minds Chat Transcript with Writers Rick Dunkel and Kim Harrison

Sir_Bedivere: Tell us about The Stranger!! It looks extremely scary!!
Rick: It's our version of a horror movie.
Kimberly_Harrison: Rick: and I are huge fans of horror movies and this was right up our alley
Sir_Bedivere: where did the idea come from?
Rick: We wanted to get back to our roots. It's very much a classic case from the early days, but we knew Scream 4 was coming out and the episode was airing on the 13th so we wanted to really play up the suspense/horror aspect.
Rick: There are some good team moments... You get to see a few of them outside of the office
Kimberly_Harrison: The fans are going to love seeing the team outside of the office.

Sir_Tristan: what have been the biggest challenges in writing the new team dynamic?
Kimberly_Harrison: Allowing Seaver to come into her own.
Rick: Filling and feeling the loss of both JJ and Prentiss, too.
Sir_Bedivere: we do miss them
Rick: Their loss very much lives with the team throughout
Rick: we honor them while still trying to find Seaver's niche

Guest1: You two have teamed on this episode, Huggins and Kirk teamed on the last; will there be more of this in future episodes; why is it a good thing?
Rick: Breen and Jim Clemente teamed up for 623; Simon and Erica for 617...
Rick: It's definitely been an interesting experience...
Rick: Kim wanted to beat me up some days for sure
Kimberly_Harrison: Rick and I no longer speak'
Rick: We only tweet

Sir_Bedivere: Is there a lot of give and take when writing with a partner?
Kimberly_Harrison: It's our version of a "mashup" like on Glee..
Rick: We actually found it very easy to write with one another...
Rick: we've know eachother for years and we found we were usually on the same page
Kimberly_Harrison: Rick and I are pretty much always in the same head space... he likes brunettes and I love thinking of ways to kill them. lol
Rick: Adjusting to writing with someone is a challenge in of itself... We'd split up to write scenes on our own, then merge them together into one script and realize, "oh whoops, that didn't pay off, or ooh, you went somewhere different, let's keep that and change my part..."
Rick: It was very collaborative and fun

Sir_Bedivere: what can you tell us about your Unsub? He looks like a combo of The Invisible Man and The Fly
Kimberly_Harrison: He's a young man with a dark past.
Rick: He may or may not have developed a taste for killing
Sir_Bedivere: curious as to what that mean Rick:
Rick: He enjoys cutlery
Sir_Bedivere: well don't we all
Sir_Percival: he enjoys carving?
Sir_Percival: it is an art
Sir_Bedivere: some call it art, some call it murder...
Rick: are you a carver, Percival? Maybe we should sick Jim Clemente on you!
Kimberly_Harrison: lol exactly... the BAU calls it murder

guinevere: Kim, I just wanted to say that "Into the Woods" is the most disturbing episode I have seen and it is my personal favourite of the season.
Rick: So gross. Kim has a sick mind.
Kimberly_Harrison: lol Thanks Guinevere
Kimberly_Harrison: I get it from you Dunkle
Rick: I haven't cringed more than watching that episode... and we've done some disturbing stuff!
Rick: It was sooo good though!

Rick: Molly from Knockout Media just stopped in... we did our DVD commentaries today
Kimberly_Harrison: I'm so glad those are done.
Kimberly_Harrison: I was super nervous!
Sir_Bedivere: your first Kim?
Rick: Fun stuff. They had to readjust the entire set-up to accomodate my 6'5 frame
Kimberly_Harrison: yup!
Sir_Percival: are you doing episode commentaries?
Rick: no. it was about the season as a whole
Kimberly_Harrison: Molly was gentle... She's great!
Rick: there will be little featurettes like the past few years
Rick: there's a bit on secrets of season six
Rick: and dealing with the loss of JJ and Prentiss

Guest1: Is it possible you may be writing for JJ and Prentiss in the future?
Rick: Obviously that would be everyone's hope, but in what capacity is really in hands other than ours...
Rick: Personally, I'd write for AJ and Paget any chance I got.

guinevere Rick:, having a son on the autism spectrum, "Coda" was very touching to me. How did you research Autism for the ep?
Rick: I did, yes. I actually got to meet Temple Grandin's mother; and Joe and I had very long discussions about his own experiences; and I read a lot of books.
Kimberly_Harrison: I think the teaser to CODA was the best teaser we've done.
guinevere: wow! Temple Grandin is an amazing person!
Sir_Bedivere: Temple Grandin is amazing. so glad her story is being told
Rick: I have a family member who is autistic so I was able to use that as well.

Guest1: The Seavers character has not been that well received; how does that make for integrating the character into the scripting?
Rick: As far as Seaver not being well received, I'd like to remind everyone that Prentiss was HATED at the beginning... We have very loyal fans and it takes time for the new characters to be warmed up to... It happened with Joe, too.
Rick: That's why we make it clear that they are not replacing anyone, they are bringing a new voice to the team.
Sir_Tristan: very good point
Sir_Bedivere: i think it's the rookie aspect that "bothers" many of the in the know fans
Sir_Bedivere: why that route?
Kimberly_Harrison: It's something we haven't done.
Kimberly_Harrison: Each team member has their own journey as how they got to the BAU
Sir_Bedivere: you know we're diehards so we're gonna ask the harder questions...the BAU is a specialized unit
Sir_Bedivere: it's always been explained that way. this is an elite unit. to put a rookie on the team just is a little out of place
Sir_Bedivere: know what i mean?
Sir_Bedivere: nothing that can be done now we realize. just voicing what many have felt
Rick: Yes, she's a rookie, but we love the idea of exploring someone who has first ahnd knowledge of what it is to live with a serial killer... Our team members study serial killers for a living... She LIVED it. I think that gives her a vital perspective that no other team member can bring.
Rick: Personally, for me, I also feel like the team in some way needs her around... She is validation on a daily basis of what they fight for. We never get to stay with the families of the serial killers or with the victims... With Seaver we have the opportunity to explore the aftermath on a weekly basis.
Sir_Bedivere: understood
Sir_Bedivere: we'lre trying to get to know her
Rick: You'll get to know here a little more tomorrow night.
Sir_Bedivere: yeah....she one of the outside the office aspects we get?
Rick: She's starting to find her place not just in the team, but in the family.
Rick: We're definitely playing it like real life. Rachel came in as an outsider; so did Seaver... but they can't exist like that forever. The integration can be rough, but in the end, friendships and new releationships are formed and strengthened through experience. She is no exception.
Sir_Bedivere: it is always hard being the new kid in school
Rick: Exactly.
Kimberly_Harrison: exactly, and I think that's something Seaver understands
Rick: I remember moving schools a few times growing up and it always took me time to be accepted... And I didn't have fans to worry about back then!

Guest1: Hotch appears to have limited screentime this season. Last week's episode was great; will we see more of him in the remaining episodes?
Rick: You will see more of Hotch, yes. In fact, we saw the director's cut of 622 today and it shows Hotch in a way you would never expect.
Rick: Here's a hint: you see him without a tie!
Kimberly_Harrison: #622 is going to be fantastic!

merlin: speaking of Hotch, how about his secret? when will we learn about it?
Rick: You already know Hotch's secret, lol.
Sir_Bedivere: is Hotch 's secret that Emily is really alive?
Rick: Everyone has secrets. Some are small. Some are big. Hotch's secret is pretty big.

More to come in the upcoming days!

Tuesday, April 12, 2011

Criminal Minds Goes Live Tweeting!

Criminal Minds writers Rick Dunkel @rickdunkle and Kim Harrison @iKimHarrison will be live tweeting during the Criminal Minds episode 'The Stranger' tomorrow at 9:00 eastern and western time! So get your questions ready!

Criminal Minds Behind the Scene Picture for Episode 6.21 'The Stranger'

Don't forget we have a new Criminal Minds episode tomorrow night at 9:00PM on CBS written by Rick Dunkel (on the left) and Kim Harrison (center)!