‘Law & Order Toronto: Criminal Intent’ Reveals All-Canadian Cast

'Law & Order Toronto: Criminal Intent' is slated to première on Citytv in 2024 and will feature an all-Canadian cast. Photo: kali9/Getty Images

Cue the dramatic dun dun! 

Law & Order Toronto: Criminal Intent announced an all-Canadian cast on Monday, adding even more intrigue to the franchise’s touch down north of the border.

“Lark Productions and Cameron Pictures Inc. have done a terrific job in securing a cast that underscores the essence of the Law & Order franchise which has captivated fans for decades,” Hayden Mindell, Senior Vice-President of Television, Rogers Sports & Media, said of the production.

Kathleen Munroe of City on Fire and Aden Young of Rectify lead the cast as a pair of elite detectives who investigate high-profile crimes and homicides in Toronto.

The Canuck cast also includes Karen Robinson, best known for her role on Schitt’s Creek and a Canadian Screen Award-winning appearance on Mary Kills People, K.C. Collins (The Cleaning Lady) as Deputy Crown attorney Theo Forrester, Nicola Correia-Damude (Shadowhunters) as forensic pathologist Dr. Lucy Da Silva and Araya Mengesha (Anne with an E) as tech expert Mark Yohannes.

The production opted for a Canadian crew as well, including tapping award-winning filmmaker Holly Dale to helm the series première as well Episode 3 and the all-important finale.

Other first-season directors include Peter Stebbings, David Wellington, Sudz Sutherland, Rachel Leiterman, Winnifred Jong, Sharon Lewis and David Straiton.

The series — which is halfway through filming in Toronto and is set to hit Citytv in the spring of 2024 — is not only the first Canadian adaptation of the crime drama, it’s also the first international iteration of Law & Order to feature an entirely new set of characters, concepts and stories.

Going for a first in Law & Order history is no small feat. The franchise, which aired its first episode in 1991, now holds the title as the longest-running scripted drama brand in TV history.

Executive producer Erin Haskett said adding to that history presented its own unique set of challenges.

“It was challenging, just to deliver what audiences are so familiar with — and to follow a formula or a recipe — but then make it your own,” she told Variety.

“It’s finding the right first story to tell in a franchise this well known,” echoed showrunner and Canadian screenwriter Tassie Cameron — who executive produces alongside her sister Amy Cameron for the series — in an interview with the publication. “You want it to be a Canadian story, feel like it’s ripped from a Canadian headline and feel like it’s highlighting Toronto. So it’s picking the right story to tell, but it’s also learning how to write these scripts.”

The Law & Order franchise is still dominating television with three series currently running — Law & Order, Law & Order: SVU and Law & Order: Organized Crime — while Law & Order: U.K., which is adapted from the American version, enjoyed a lengthy eight-season run across the pond.

Cameron adds that the casting follows the blueprint of the original, with the production looking “outside of traditional TV types.”

“It’s thrilling to write so many different kinds of characters, and cast so many talented people,” she says.

As for the cases the detectives will crack into during the first season, Cameron says they “tried to stay away from some of the more sensational serial killings in our country’s history.

“We might do one, but you have to cover that stuff very carefully. There are lots of fascinating stories on our list, some that we decided to wait on until Season 2, if we are so lucky as to get one.”


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