Diva Unbound: Mandy Patinkin Walks Away From Criminal Minds
I'm still chugging away on other stuff, but i had to pass along this press release which popped in my email about a half-hour ago, confirming one of the worst-kept secrets in Hollywood -- that bona fide showbiz diva Mandy Patinkin has decided to walk away from his CBS hit, Criminal Minds.
During last night's Jeff Goldblum gig, critics were buzzing over Patinkin's decision to simply not show up for the scheduling start of production on his series, a crime drama about guys who track down serial killers which had, inexplicably, swelled in viewership on Wednesdays as the surprise hit of last season. According to the buzz, seven scripts had already been written and the show's crew, numbering in the hundreds, was ready to start work when Patinkin pulled his no-show.
My fave line about Patinkin's decision to walk away from his popular, depressingly mediocre series came from a colleague: "Maybe he actually saw the show over the summer break."
UPDATE: My next favorite line about Patinkin came from his former co-star on the CBs medical drama Chicago Hope, Adam Arkin. Speaking during a press conference on a new NBC show, Life, Arkin was asked if he was surprised.
"Nope," said Arkin, bringing a wave of laughter from the critics. "Hey, he's done it before."
Here's the press release, from CBS which airs the show ABC, which produces it, and Patinkin, who may have just killed it:
ON BEHALF OF ABC STUDIOS AND CBS PARAMOUNT NETWORK TELEVISION:
Last week, Mandy Patinkin asked to be released from his role on Criminal Minds. We have honored this request, which was not in any way connected to contract renegotiations or salary issues. His departure from the series will be explained to audiences in an episode to be filmed in the near future and broadcast early next season. We thank Mandy for helping to make Criminal Minds a strong and successful series, and we wish him the best in his future endeavors. A new character will be added to the series for next season.
ON BEHALF OF MANDY PATINKIN:
Due to creative differences, Mandy has asked not to return to Criminal Minds this season. Mandy would like to thank the studios and network for releasing him from the series and he wishes the cast and crew continued success in all of their endeavors and looks forward to continuing to work with the Disney and CBS companies in other capacities in the future.