Academy Award-winner Forest Whitaker is reportedly going to try his hand as television’s new leading man, according to The Hollywood Reporter. The website announced on January 25 that he is negotiation with CBS for its potential ‘Criminal Minds’ spin-off.
If Whitaker is accepted for the project, he will the play the role of squad leader Cooper, who CBS describes as a dynamic father figure to the rest of the Behavioral Unit team. Cooper is a former well-known profiler who hasn’t prominent in eight years.
The spin-off was written by ‘Criminal Minds’ executive producer Chris Mundy, and is based on a story he created with executive producer Ed Bernero. Richard Shepard will be directing the pilot. The spin-off’s story will be introduced on a spring episode of the original show, and will focus on a new group of profilers who work outside the FBI bureaucracy.
The producers wanted Whitaker early on, and initiated what came to be a lengthy on- and off- negotiation. When The Hollywood Reporter made the announcement on the 25th, CBS was close to locking him into a contract. Part of the contract will include a producing credit for Whitaker.
This isn’t the first time Whitaker has starred on television. His numerous guest-starring roles include FX’s ‘The Shield,’ where he portrayed Lieutenant Jon Kavanaugh, and NBC’s ‘ER,’ where he played Curtis Ames, both in 2006 and 2007.
Written by: Karen Benardello