Joe Mantegna Joining 'Criminal Minds'
Three-time Emmy nominee in as Mandy Patinkin exits
Ed Bernero, showrunner on the CBS hit drama, made the announcement on Friday (Aug. 10) on a "Criminal Minds" fan blog.
"We are very excited to tell you all that Joe Mantegna is officially joining the cast of 'Criminal Minds,'" Bernero wrote. "Thanks for hanging with us, everyone."
After two years playing FBI Behavioral Analysis Unit leader Jason Gideon, Patinkin left "Criminal Minds" last month. In a statement that followed a week of swirling rumors, both sides said the departure was due to that favorite Hollywood condition of "creative differences."
A number of names, including most prominently Geena Davis and Harvey Keitel, had been reported as Patinkin's potential replacement.
CBS officially announced Mantegna's casting in a Tuesday press release revealing that his character will be Agent David Rossi, a former member of the Behavioral Analysis Unit who took early retirement to go on lecture and book tours, and has volunteered to return to the unit. The character will first appear in the season's fifth episode.
"We are all THRILLED to have Joe Mantegna joining our family," Bernero gushed in the CBS statement. "He's an incredible actor, a genuinely nice person and, as a fellow Chicagoan, I can tell you he makes fantastic Italian Beef sandwiches and Chicago Style Hot Dogs."
Mantegna is a three-time Emmy nominee including a nod this year for his work on USA's "The Starter Wife." His last two regular network series gigs were with CBS, on "Joan of Arcadia" and "First Monday." On the big screen, the David Mamet regular has been seen in "House of Games," "The Godfather III" and "Baby's Day Out."