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USA Network is finally confirming what I first hinted at last week: Vincent D’Onofrio is exiting Law & Order: CI. He’ll say good-bye in the show’s two-part season 9 premiere, at which time he’ll pass the baton to co-star Jeff Goldblum.

“I have always been, and have always viewed myself, as a character actor, and the great opportunity that Dick [Wolf] presented to me to develop the Goren character on Criminal Intent was successful beyond my wildest expectations,” D’Onofrio said in a statement. “After eight seasons, and with the addition of Jeff Goldblum, now is the perfect time for me to explore other acting opportunities and I leave the show knowing it is in great hands with Jeff. For all my loyal CI fans, I wouldn’t be surprised if Goren pops up from time to time.”

D’Onofrio’s longtime partner, Kathryn Erbe, is expected to return for the two-parter as well, although her deal is still being finalized. As previously reported, My Own Worst Enemy‘s Saffron Burrows is expected to replace her.

Thoughts?

Law & Order: Criminal Intent
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