CBS has just announced that Jennifer Love Hewitt will be joining the cast of Criminal Minds as a regular cast member for season 10. She will be introduced in the season premier of the show on Wednesday, October 1st as FBI undercover agent Kate Callahan. Executive Producer Erica Messer is “thrilled” to be adding her to the cast.
This will be Hewitt’s first regular appearance on the CBS network since she starred in Ghost Whisperer from 2005-2010. She got her first break on the children’s show Kids Incorporated but didn’t gain real fame until she joined the cast of Fox’s Party of Five in 1995. She has also had notable film roles such as her leading role in I Know What You Did Last Summer in 1997 and its sequel the following year.
Hewitt has played a multitude of roles in her career ranging from criminal to paranormal counselor and has joined the long list of actors who have made up their minds to dabble in writing and music on the side as well. In 2010 she published a book called The Day I Shot Cupid which became a New York Times bestseller when it hit the shelves. She contributed songs to several of the movies and TV shows she has appeared in, and even sang back-up on the hit song “Toy Soldiers” released by fellow Kids Incorporated alumnus Martika.
Several of the current cast members of Criminal Minds have worked with Hewitt in the past and are said to be excited about working with her again on a regular basis. The show tracks the activities of an FBI team, the Behavioral Analysis Unit (BAU), that analyses criminal behavior (usually serial killers) in order to develop a profile and ultimately identify and apprehend the suspect. The series began in 2005 and has been consistently popular among fans of the crime drama genre. It even had a brief spin-off starring Forest Whitaker.
The cast of the show has been fairly stable since it premiered in 2005 with some notable exceptions. Mandy Patinkin who was part of the show at the beginning as Jason Gideon, a senior agent in a mentor/father figure role for the rest of the team, decided to leave the show during the third season because he became uncomfortable with some of its graphic content and has not returned. His character was replaced by David Rossi, played by Joe Mantegna, who rejoined the BAU after a hiatus spent as an author. Other major changes to the original cast were ultimately reversed and the characters played by A. J. Cook’s and Paget Brewster ultimately rejoined the team after brief absences.
Given Hewitt’s respect in Hollywood and her solid track record in television it is doubtful her new role will be short-lived. With three full months between the announcement of the cast addition and the season premier CBS will also lots of opportunity to capitalize on her popularity and as one of CBS’s most established dramas the show is likely to have a few more seasons to offer its fans as well. Curious minds will have to wait to see Hewitt hunting down criminals for just a little bit longer.
By David Morris