Chris Noth has been with the Law & Order franchise since the original Law & Order first premiered 1990. From 1990 to 1995, Noth portrayed Detective Mike Logan before leaving the series to star in a string of TV movies – including a Law & Order movie in 1998.

Bolstered by his high profile role as Mr. Big on Sex and the City, Chris Noth returned as Detective Mike Logan on Law & Order: Criminal Intent in 2005. After another three year stint with an L&O series, news has come out today that Chris Noth will once again be leaving Mike Logan behind so as to take on new movie roles. The new actor cast to play his replacement? Film star Jeff Goldblum.

Law & Order: Criminal Intent will be keeping its other lead, Vincent D’Onofrio, who portrays Detective Robert Goren. As Chris Noth did for the past three seasons on L&O: CI, Jeff Goldblum will be splitting starring duties with Vincent D’Onofrio during the series’ 16-episode eighth season.

“Jeff’s presence will add a new dimension to an already successful show,” Law & Order: Criminal Intent producer Dick Wolf told The Hollywood Reporter.

Though known for his many film roles, including such classic films as The Fly and Jurassic Park, Jeff Goldblum is no stranger to television. In addition to making guest appearances on shows such as Friends and Will and Grace, in 2007 he played the lead role on the short-lived detective series Raines. After that series’ demise, he went on to star on stage opposite Kevin Spacey in the London production of David Mamet’s comedy Speed-the-Plow.

There is no clear word on why Chris Noth has left the L&O: CI, though there are rumors that he was asked to take a pay freeze for the upcoming season rather than offered a pay increase. With the success of Sex and the City: The Movie and with new movie roles already being filmed, including a romantic comedy called My One and Only that also stars Renée Zellweger, it seems clear why Noth made his decision.

“Chris has been a member of the Law & Order family since the beginning, and Mike Logan is one of the most popular detectives in the history of television,” Dick Wolf said to The Hollywood Reporter. “We all wish him the best.”

New season 7 episodes of Law & Order: Criminal Intent are currently airing on Sunday nights on USA Network. Season 8 with Jeff Golblum should begin airing on USA this fall.

– , BuddyTV Staff Writer
Source: The Hollywood Reporter, FOX News
(Photo courtesy of IMDb)

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