Anna Gunn recently starred as a detective on Fox’s limited event series Gracepoint, but now that series has ended its run, she’s decided to stick with crime for her next project. This week, it was announced that Gunn has joined the upcoming Criminal Minds spinoff. The project is currently being put together as a one-off episode that will appear as a planted episode of Criminal Minds sometime later this year.
In the upcoming pilot, Gunn will play linguist and international law expert Aly Lambert, which should fit in quite well with the rest of the team. If you know anything about the upcoming Criminal Minds spinoff, you should know that it will be a little different than the CBS drama that is already on the air. The new series will also be FBI-focused, but instead of featuring another division of the BAU, the show will focus on a division of the FBI that helps American Citizens who are abroad. THR describes Gunn’s character as “smart” and “capable,” but I wouldn’t expect anything else from a member of an FBI team—especially one that has to navigate the murky waters of international politics.
Gunn is obviously most famous for her role on Breaking Bad, where she played Skyler White, the depressed wife of meth king Walter White. She was stressed out and felt powerless for a good chunk of that series, but she was able to shed that image when she signed on to Gracepoint, which allowed her to play a small town detective dealing with a death that shakes the community. In the past, Gunn has also had big roles on Deadwood and The Practice.
Gunn isn’t the only actor to join the Criminal Minds spinoff. A couple of months after the project was first announced, we learned Gary Sinise will headline the series and will play team leader Jack Garrett, who has 20 years of experience with the bureau. Just a couple of days ago, Walking Dead actor Tyler James Williams also joined the spinoff, playing the new team’s technical analyst, Monty. So, he’ll basically be the Penelope of the gang, helping the team to fill information gaps as they try to find killers abroad.
Criminal Minds has a pretty dense ensemble cast, so while Gunn, Sinise and Williams are a great start, we do expect to hear more names attached to the spinoff in the coming months. Obviously, CBS still has a few more hurdles to cross before this one moves to series, however. While it’s expected that the characters will be introduced during a Criminal Minds Season 10 episode later this year, the reception will likely go a long way to determine whether or not CBS decides to officially move forward with the series.
The good news is that CBS loves spinoffs. Currently, there are three NCIS shows on the air. In addition, over the years, there has been a slew of CSI procedurals, including the latest, CSI: Cyber. Criminal Minds has had a spinoff once before called Criminal Minds: Suspect Behavior. While that show didn’t work out over the long haul, the international setting with the new spinoff is appealing and will hopefully bring the eyeballs CBS needs to bring the show to series.