Ulrich was canned from ‘Law & Order’ cast
Q: The actor who played the police detective who was killed in the first new episode of “Law & Order: LA” recently is one of my favorites, and I wondered if he opted off the show or was just let go. And will he be appearing in anything else?
Della Clark, Tustin, Calif. A: He was let go. Skeet Ulrich was terminated as part of a creative revamp of the NBC show, and to make room for Alfred Molina’s character leaving the prosecutor’s office to return to the police force, Detective Rex Winters became the victim of a drive-by shooting at home. No new projects had been announced for Ulrich at this writing, but that shouldn’t take much longer; he’s been perpetually employed, either on television or in movies, since the mid-1990s.
Q: Have “The Glades” and “Memphis Beat” been renewed, and if so, when will their new seasons start?
Jan Rozewski, Franklin, Wis. A: Both crime dramas will return, and you’ll be glad to know it will happen soon. The Matt Passmore-starring “The Glades” will be back on A&E Network this summer for a run of 13 new episodes beginning June 5, while “Memphis Beat” will resurface on TNT for a run of 10 new episodes starting June 14.
Q: Will PBS do a follow-up to “Downton Abbey”?
Linda Dresher, New Hartford, N.Y. A: Yes. In fact, the British network ITV already had ordered a sequel even before the first miniseries began airing in America on PBS’ “Masterpiece Classic.” The drama was a big hit on both sides of the Atlantic, and as its viewers know, a lot of matters were left unresolved ... giving the creative talents plenty of fertile territory to begin afresh with. Production is under way now, and PBS is thinking in terms of early 2012 for its airing here.
Q: There was a miniseries called “The Winds of War,” starring Robert Mitchum, in the late 1970s or early 1980s as I recall. I’m wondering if that will ever be offered on DVD or seen again on television.
Carol Hirsch, Fruita, Colo. A: We don’t know of another television showing of the madefor-ABC 1983 adaptation of the Herman Wouk novel being planned — it would take a real commitment by a network, since by itself without commercials, it runs just under 15 hours — but the news is considerably happier on the DVD front.
The drama has been available in that format since 2004. The 1988-89 sequel, the even longer “War and Remembrance” (in which Mitchum also starred, and which basically was split into two miniseries by ABC), also has been available on disc for a number of years.
Q: “Royal Pains” was such a wonderful summer series. Will it return?
Penny Clifton, Seattle A: The show starts its third season June 29 on USA Network. Another person quite happy about its return is star Mark Feuerstein, who reportedly has gotten a significant pay increase over what he earned for the series’ first two rounds.
Q: Can someone please tell me why “Criminal Minds” let the character JJ be released from the show?
Rebecca Palms, Fayetteville, N.C. A: This has been answered in this column previously, but since there’s newer information, we’ll tackle it again. At the time the character was written out, the producers had decided not to renew the option of actress A.J. Cook ... but last month, she signed a new deal to return to the CBS show as JJ, covering the next two seasons. In fact, she’s slated to appear in the current year’s final episode this Wednesday, May 18.
Additionally, there was talk that Paget Brewster may return to “Criminal Minds” on a regular basis as Emily Prentiss, largely depending on whether NBC picks up a comedy pilot she’s made for the fall season. It remains to be seen what all of this might mean for co-star Rachel Nichols, who was brought into the show this season as newest team member Ashley Seaver.
Q: Are Mark Harmon and Angie Harmon related?
Pamela Raymus, Milwaukee A: No. However, it’s interesting to note that both performers have co-starred in series with actress Sasha Alexander ... Mark in the first two seasons of CBS’ “NCIS” and Angie in the current TNT show “Rizzoli & Isles” (which returns with new episodes July 11).
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