CBS is planning a new Criminal Minds spin-off.
The as-yet-untitled project is set in a different division of the Federal Bureau of Investigation, which comes to the aid of American citizens who find themselves in trouble in foreign countries. It is being trialled as a back-door pilot, which will air as an episode of Criminal Minds towards the back end of the show’s current season.
Criminal Minds showrunner Erica Messer is penning the script for the spin-off, which, like the original series, will be produced by ABC Studios, CBS Television Studios and the Mark Gordon Company. Erica Messer, Mark Gordon and Nick Pepper will serve as executive producers. Casting details are not currently available.
This marks the second attempt that CBS has made to spin-off Criminal Minds – which ranks as one of their highest rated shows – into a franchise. The network previously launched spin-off Criminal Minds: Suspect Behaviour (pictured, left) starring Forrest Whitaker and Janeane Garofalo in during the 2010/2011 season, but it only did OK in the ratings and as such was cancelled after 13 episodes. That show also began its life with a back-door pilot.
The pilot order also continues a trend of the past development cycle of going back to reboots and spin-offs. After all, this season alone CBS has launched a new NCIS spin-off (NCIS: New Orleans) and will be debuting a new CSI spin-off (the Patricia Arquette fronted CSI: Cyber) in March.