Exclusive: Body Of Proof Boss Explains Cast Shake-Up, Reveals New Players to Be Added

ABC’s Body Of Proof is undergoing a rather extreme makeover in its third season — but one that is designed to give the show’s storytelling a jolt and not trim overhead.

In fact, on the heels of the three announced cast cutsNicholas Bishop (who plays Peter), John Carrol Lynch (Bud) and Sonja Sohn (Sam) — showrunner Matt Gross says that two new characters will join the mix.

The first, Det. Tommy Sullivan, is a former love interest of Megan’s who transfers to Philadelphia to win her back. The sexy cop will give his strong-willed ex a flirty hard time as they work together to solve cases. The second newbie, Det. Adam Schaeffer, is a smart (and smart-mouthed) rookie who routinely gets ahead of himself, and that will cause him a bit of trouble.

Here, Gross — along with executive producers Christopher Murphey and [former 24 executive producer] Evan Katz — details for TVLine why and how the Dana Delany-fronted procedural is being retooled.

TVLINE | For starters, I understand that what’s going on here is not about shaving dollars.
MATTHEW GROSS | No, not at all. We were fortunate enough to get a Season 3 of our show, and in trying to bring more eyeballs to our show, we wanted to change some of the dynamic and create new characters. And that’s the purpose for all of this. Also, we just brought on Evan Katz as one of the heads of the “three-headed hydra” — that’s what we refer to ourselves as.
EVAN KATZ | A very nice hydra by the way. It’s sort of a creative reboot of the show with the goal of being more dynamic, higher stakes, everything that we can do to amp up the stakes of each episode –
GROSS – and create promotable opportunities for our storytelling.

TVLINE | I was going to say that given all the show’s strengths, casting-wise and plotting-wise, for a couple of seasons now it has  failed to really “pop” out there.
KATZ It has a core audience, which is a beautiful thing, and we’re going to try to reinvigorate a little bit, remain true to the audience, but give people satisfaction and engagement on more levels. Toward the end of the second season, I was not here, but these guys started to tell slightly higher-stake stories, and that’ll continue. On a character basis, and I think this is the interesting thing that’s got all of us excited, we’re going to give her a male co-lead. [Someone] is going to come back into her life, a stormy relationship from her 20s.

TVLINE | That’s the detective, Tommy Sullivan?
KATZ | Det. Tommy Sullivan. [Megan's] strength is that she can run over pretty much everybody. But she can’t run over this guy. And it will enable us to really see what it’s like when she gets flustered.
GROSS | The show is a very interesting hybrid. It’s murders solved through a medical point of view, but by the same token, it has a strong procedural, police track as well. So by giving Megan Hunt an interpersonal relationship from the past, it gives us a stronger point of view coming from that angle.
CHRISTOPHER MURPHEY | And it gives subtext and tension in their relationship that’s integrated into their investigation. So we just see it as making their personal and professional dynamic more compelling.

TVLINE | And the other new character, Det. Adam Schaeffer, what’s he going to bring to the mix?
MURPHEY | Youth. A different perspective. Energy. Our lead, Tommy, is coming from New York. Adam is a born-and-bred Philadelphian, his father’s a big defense attorney. So he has a perspective; his joining the police force was kind of a rebellion against his father, but it’s not that he’s some do-gooder. It’s that for every defense attorney out there in the world who bends the rules, we need a cop who knows how to bend the rules the other way and get away with it.
GROSS | He knows the system from the inside out.
MURPHEY | Yeah. He’ll be something of an operator. So again, really we do need two cops on the police side of the investigation, just for practical purposes, but we also feel like these are two dynamic characters we can get a lot out of.
GROSS | Adam is a guy who thinks that he knows it all. He’s wise beyond his years, but doesn’t have the experience to back it up. And he might get himself in some trouble along the way for running his mouth off.

TVLINE | Are you saying whether this means that Peter died in the Season 2 finale?
GROSS | You’re going to have to see the opening episode. [Laughs] You have to make your own conclusion.

TVLINE | How did you get the word out to John, Sonja and Nick about what was going on?
GROSS |  Well you know, these are very difficult conversations to have, because we really enjoy collaborating with them as artists and have gotten to know them personally over the years. But truth be told, we were taking the show in a different direction. Some of those characters sort of had played out and other characters would be marginalized with these new dynamics. Nothing they did wrong at all, it’s just we’re taking the show in a different direction.

TVLINE | I can totally see your point. Because although you spent two seasons trying to build a simmering “thing” there with Megan and Peter, why not just bring in a character who already had that combustible relationship in the past and revisit that?
KATZ | It’s a way to jump-start that relationship, and that’s exciting.
MURPHEY | It was also difficult for the role of Peter to have that kind of relationship with Dr. Hunt when he’s subordinate to her.
KATZ | He worked for her. She’s a very strong character. Dana is very strong in her persona. It makes her a great character, and really fun to watch but sort of impossible for a man who works under her to have a relationship with her.
GROSS | We took a lot of time to think about this at great length, lots of discussion, really thinking about every character, their interpersonal dynamic, how they fit together. This is ultimately where we came out. And we’ve been given this tremendous opportunity to get a season 3 and we want to raise up our demo numbers and we also want to make the show engaging at a different capacity.

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175 Comments
  1. Dbalcer says:

    It is hard to be a part of the demographic that is undervalued. Isaac vested in the characters they cut and am not sure that I will like the direction the show is taking. I will check it out but my commitment is lessened due to the cast cuts. I wish advertisers would realize that the 50 and up market is the one with the disposible income so they wouldn’t cancel shows high in that demo.

  2. Sam says:

    I’m actually excited about these changes. I never felt like the chemistry worked in the cast and the writers had problems finding a rythmn because Dana is/was always dynamic, but the supporting cast didn’t really work to support her. I think they are going in the right direction. I stopped watching in Season 2 because I didn’t connect with anyone, but Meghan. So, I’ll definitely give this a shot next season. Oh, and I am in that coveted 18-49 age demo.

  3. Jenny says:

    Maybe Derek Shepherd can make a trip to Philly get some advice from Megan on how she handles not being a neurosurgeon anymore and how she got on with her life.

  4. Velvet says:

    I couldn’t stand this show from the beginning.

  5. Chris says:

    Sam and Bud stank, so good riddance. But I loved Peter. I think getting rid of him is a huge mistake, and it very much lessens my interest in the show.

    • ravie says:

      Chris, it’s amazing how people’s opinions differ. You said Sam and Bud stank, yet you loved Peter. I liked Sam and Bud, especially Bud,and don’t find that they stank, but I couldn’t stand Peter, especially when he became involved with the young chick who he knew Egan liked, who he knew was too young for him, yet he still went after her. Losing Peter from the show will be no loss to me and I for one can’t wait to see what the other two new ones will bring to the table.

  6. houserocks1 says:

    Body of Proof has been my favorite show from it’s beginning to now because of Megan and Peter’s dynamics. I had to get past the not so great Megan’s ex with boss, Dani and Peter storylines. Now with Peter gone, I don’t know. I really liked those two together with their “thang.” Re-tooling may have cost the show this die-hard fan.

  7. This is just terrible.. Not going to watch this show without these great actors. Love Peter. Love Bud. Love Sam. What is the point of writing out characters whom we love, to introduce more characters. Perhaps the problem is that the show had too many characters to start with . And with bad producing equals sloppy shows. Perhaps they should’ve co-ordinated better story lines for all the characters instead of Megan Hunt ALWAYS SOLVING THE CASE!!! STUPID!!

    • ravie says:

      It may seem stupid that Megan solves all the cases, but that’s the premise of the show. Maybe they should leave out all the detectives altogether, or stop showing them trying to solve the case but just interacting with Megan when she solves it; because it does make them look incompetent. That said, I guess the show wasn’t working as the producers liked, with the supporting actors; those they cut. Well change is good, so let’s see what happens.

  8. Really? Okay wow for starters taking out ANY of the cast is completely WRONG. I can see how you can take out “Bud”. Hes got a new baby so hes going to stay home and help with his wife and kid. There is one gone. Now “Sam”. I actually liked her. I’d hate to see her go but fine. Now “Peter”?! HECK NO. He is one of the best out of this entire series! Yeah, he got stabbed at the end of season 2. So what? People can live through that. They do almost everyday! Man this season is now going to be awful without Peter, Sam, or Bud. They made the show good. But replacing them? Especially Peter?! No, now you went to far. At least PLEASE for the love of Jesus keep friggin’ Peter. Yeah I’m only 14 but this show is freaking amazing just like it is now. Yeah I might be exaggerating a little but I don’t care! I love Body Of Proof. Just how it is. WITH Peter in it. End of story.

  9. were123 says:

    Why?! Why Peter?! He and Megan worked so great together! I loved Body of Proof, both seasons, and I will be watching season 3, but I’m really worried about Peter leaving the show, I really like his character and his dinamyc with Megan. I hope he can come back as a guest star or maybe a recurring in upcoming seasons (if there are upcoming seasons).

  10. Emma says:

    I the writing is as good as the other seasons it will be fine I mean I loved those characters but they don’t make the whole show it really did need a change up and I think this can be interesting if they play it off the right way don’t make a big deal out of losing a character

    • friendoftv says:

      It’s not losing “a” character; they’re losing 3 characters, and that’s a big difference; 3 people that we’ve all come to know. Having said that, I didn’t like Peter much anyway. I’m looking forward to the change and hope it will be good.

  11. Annaliese says:

    Anyone know who’s been/being cast for the two new roles?

  12. toya says:

    you have just destoryed me watching this show you killed off peter my favorite

  13. Dennis says:

    Hey Abc leave the show alone and get rid of the Lame As Dancing with the Stars

  14. Joy says:

    I enjoyed BoP as it was. Never thought of Peter & Megan as the will they wont they types. To me he seemed more of her conscience.I remember the episode where he helped her daughter with a school project as someone else mentioned.I liked that sort of connection. Will they wont they can be so overdone. As for Sam and Bud. OK Megan solved the murders but that seems par for the course in this type of show. I liked that they brought, how do I put it, a little lightness? After all a show based on murders can get a little dark at times.

  15. Phyllis says:

    Too much surgery at one time! I liked all three of the characters..A LOT! they should have taken out one at a time, and told us where thier fictional lives were going. I will still watch, but have serious doubts that I will be as loyal as I was.

    • friendoftv says:

      I think it’s better they took all out at once. If they had done it one at a time, the fans would have become even more insecure about the show. It would have shown too much instability over a period of time, so it’s better this way. I will especially miss Bud; Peter, not so much. I always felt they held back too much on Sam’s character, so never got to bond with her enough.

  16. ada says:

    I think they try to fix the show and they made it wrong is going to be like a new show WHY… keep all of them and try to figure it out a new exciting episodea, with all this changes I dont feel to watch it anymore

  17. suem says:

    I always wonder when producers of a show say they are keeping the core for their faithful watchers, then go and basically gut the show. I am really disappointed in these changes. I liked Bud and Sam a lot and have no interest in the new characters as described in this article. I thought Peter acted as a great balance to Megan. For me the story line that didn’t work was all the drama around Lacey – giving her diabetes to make her more ‘interesting’ didn’t work for me at all; I much prefer the drama of investigation to the ‘heart-warming’ addition of family background (ugh). And I really enjoyed having Jamie Bamber in the cast (but I guess he’s found another show…). I’m not saying I *won’t* watch, but based on the description here, it will most likely be for only 1-2 shows this season. I really enjoyed this show; I doubt I will like this season of it.

  18. bob says:

    they SHOULD DUMP Jeri Ryan Every time I look at her I think 7 of 9 and how her freakng divorce got us stuck with Obama

  19. Kenneth Clarke says:

    “Body of Proof” was my favorite show! Then, right when everything starts moving along well, they cancelled it! Megan was just starting to get along and establish a working relationship with her boss, she and her daughter were finally getting along, andPeter were showing some support for each other! My only gripe about it was that Megan and Peter were spending too much time bugging each other about the other’s personal lives. I hope it comes back on TV!

    • friendoftv says:

      As far as I know the show has not been cancelled. They’ve however made some changes and removed some of the actors and bringing in some new ones. On another note, it was nice to see Peter (Nicholas Bishop) on a guest episode of The Glades.

  20. Kenneth Clarke says:

    I remember Jeri Ryan when she appeared on a show called “Shark” with James Woods. She was just starting to establish her role as one of his associates when the show ended. I think it was a mistake to have her character become Megan’s ex-husband’s mistress. It added a degree of tension which overshadowed the main storyline for several episodes.

    • friendoftv says:

      Kenneth I so agree with you. I didn’t like it either. And it seems they realised their mistake and dropped it. Then they moved Jeri from being head of forensics and put the black guy (can’t remember his name, but I like him, he makes me laugh). I’m glad they put her back as head though; I don’t like too many changes once you start a show a particular way and you make viewers get accustomed to how things are.

  21. Judy Leigh says:

    When is the new Body of Proof starting?

  22. leigh says:

    I wanted Body of Proof to be renewed but now that they are taking Peter away, possibly killing him and take bud and sam away. Not so happy with BOP.

  23. SUSAN says:

    I GET REALLY HACKED AT THE NETWORKS FOR CHANGING GOOD SHOWS AND THEN CANCELING THEM……I REALLY LIKED AND MISS… V….THE EVENT…HUMAN TARGET…PAN AM AND NOW HARRYS LAW….AND WHAT GARBAGE DO THEY THROW AT US…PRETEENAGE SITCOMS AND VERY SILLY NOT VERY FUNNY COMEDYS……BODY OF PROOF SHOULD NOT HAVE BEEN CHANGED….AND WHERE IS UNFORGOTTEN???? I WATCH CABLE MORE AND MORE…FOR DOC MARTIN, MASTERPIECE THEATERS, MIDSOMMER MYSTERY, MERLIN, DOWNTOWN ABBEY….MUCH BETTER THAN SOME OF THE MINDLESS DRIBBLE THE MAIN NETWORKS TRY TO FORCE ON US,…..I AM REALLY HOPING 666 PARK AVE IS GOOD…AND DONT EVEN THINK OF TOUCHING …GRIMM, ONCE UPON A TIME, CASTLE, THE MENTALIST, THE GOOD WIFE, PERSON OF INTEREST, AND LEVERAGE…SOMETIME BBC AND THE DISCOVERY CHANNEL ARE BETTER THAN NBC, CBS, ABC AND FOX.

  24. SUSAN says:

    ONE MORE THING…I USE MY CABLE DVD BOX AND RECORD MOST ALL MY SHOWS AND THEN WATCH THEM BACK LATER…SOMETIMES THE SAME NIGHT, BUT WITHOUT THE ADVERTISING……I HAVE A LARGE NUMBER OF FRIENDS WHO DO THE SAME..IN FACT MOST OF MY FRIENDS DO THIS…QUESTION IS.,…DO THE NETWORKS KNOW HOW MANY PEOPLE ARE RECORDING THE SHOWS, VERSUS THE PEOPLE WHO ARE WATCHING THE SHOWS LIVE…MAKES A HUGE DIFFERENCE IN VIEWER AUDIENCE FOR A SHOW…AS FAR AS THE NIELSEN RATINGS…PASSEE…MY TV IS GOING SOMETIMES FOR HOURS WHEN I’M NOT EVEN IN THE ROOM AND HAVE NO IDEA WHAT IS PLAYING……I’M BUSY SOMEWHERE ELSE,..SO THOSE SHOWS ARE SHOWING A VIEWER AUDIENCE WHO ISNT EVEN HOME! AND WOULD NEVER WATCH THE PROGRAM IF THEY WERE HOME…. THEY NEED TO FIGURE OUT A WAY TO TRACK RECORDED SHOWS FROM THE CABLE COMPANIES….

  25. Mary says:

    The detective characters leaving the series I can understand but Peter? There was a simmering relationship developing with Megan that has turned into a friendship (and could easily go back to a simmering relationship). Why leave us high and dry like that? I thought the Peter character was more important than the character Jeri Ryan portrays. Well, I’ve watched this series from its premiere but it may be going down hill now. Anyway, my 2 cents about my disappointment with this shakeup.

  26. Music Diva says:

    YOU GUYS REALLY MESSED UP,NO LONGER A FAN JUST DELETED IT FROM MY DVR!!! HOPE NO SEASON 4 (YOU TOSS PEOPLE LIKE TRASH!!!) SHAME ON YOU!!!

  27. Lisa says:

    Well apparently they are so worried about getting new viewers, they aren’t worried about losing the audience they do have. I loved the constant bickering between Bud and Megan. It added some humor to the show. As for Peter being cut…I’m extremely upset with this. If it was their plan to have a Megan/Peter relationship (no originality there) and the whole subordinate thing was the problem…here’s an idea: As a writer change the story. Give him a different job or have him request to no longer work with Megan. Make them fight or whatever and then slowly rebuild their friendship (as in real life). Or instead of doing the whole cliched “get the main two characters together” thing, have them actually work together as friends. He was the opposite of Megan and that’s why their work relationship was believable. You didn’t even have to cut any of the characters to retoole the show. Your job as a writer is to be creative and write. If you put them in a situation that you think the audience is bored with…write something new. As for Kate…I’m so bored with her. She and Megan argue, they get mean, they quit talking, Megan’s right….Been there done that. Move on. You could have gotten rid of her and put in a new character there. Thanks for making the fans who have actually watched the show since day one and have gotten invested in the characters lives….thanks for wasting our time and deciding that our opinion sucks. To change something that we loved enough to watch every week because you don’t have enough of an audience….wow.

  28. joy cat says:

    I am very disappointed that the Peter character and the Bud character are gone. I was looking forward to watching this show, I think now I won’t bother…

  29. Lynn says:

    Will watch again, thought show had been cancelled so now I am glad to see it return. Have to say that I see no point to replacing the 2 detectives with a love interest for Megan and a “younger” cop. Am fed up with “younger” being forced fed to us on other shows too. Younger means, usally, inexperienced and not so smart as they think they are.

  30. carol says:

    Well I’m a fan of the show. I was sad to see desperate house wives leave and pan am and gbs I liked them. You just get started on a show then they take it away. I also liked human target and have been looking for the protector and don’t see that coming back either. I would like to know what ever happened to the old shows everybody watched 25 years ago. The dukes of hazard night rider golden girls Maud Remington steel. These shows were unrealistic but isn’t that. Why we sometimes watch them. To loose ourselves in something for a while and forget about the stress of life. Everything doesn’t have to be so perfect t or well that can’t really happen. I’m so glad to see Dallas back on. I loved it as a child and look forward to watching now.you pretty much know what’s going to happen but it’s still fun to watch.I would like to see something along that line. I love comedy but not over excited about a lot of the ones out there. I would rather watch tv. Land I really think they need to bring the carol burnett show back. Clean funny a true American classic.

    • Ravie says:

      Carol I feel you. You have mentioned most of the shows that I loved, and I too have been looking for The Protector and wondering where it got to. I also haven’t seen Against the Wall come back yet. I started watching one called King and it seemed they dropped that as well. There is no more patience for TV anymore. Imagine they dropped Made in Jersey after only 2 episodes (although I think another network took it up to burn off the rest of the episodes). I don’t really watch TV Land though, because there are so many new shows on that I can hardly keep up. You didn’t mention anything about Body of Proof so I wasn’t sure if you were happy about the changes or not, but I enjoyed reading your comments.

  31. Mary says:

    The changes do suck but if anything it makes me more curious about the show. I agree, it’s not the best show on TV but hell, it’s entertaining. Unlike most of you who want Jeri Ryan kicked off, I’m happy she’s staying. Her character just needs to he more involved with these cases. Either way, I’m a fan regardless of the changes. That’s show business and it’s the advertisers who run TV. Not execs. Be open minded!! And yeah, it’s obvious the show is gonna get canned but enjoy it while it’s on. At least they made it to three seasons even if most of you are going to turn your back on it.

  32. evans says:

    i am just glad they have left in the two feature characters Ethan and wendel

  33. Nikki Gorey says:

    No, No, No….not Peter! I was looking forward to the follow up to last season, but apparently we won’t get that. Not a fan of the cast changes or the addition of Megan’s new love interest. Oh well..way to go killing a great show.

  34. Sad to see Bud, Sam and Peter leave the show. I am currently really getting into the show (on ep8 of season 2) and I love the dynamic between Peter & Megan. I really hoped it would get to play out properly.

    Someone above mentioned the revamp that was attempted with Human Target for its second season. For me it destroyed the show, pretty much everything I loved about the first season was ditched (strong male characters, great music, fun mini movies and such) and replaced with a weakened Chance, two lasses to try and bring in more female viewers and overall a much less interesting arc. I’m sad I’ll never get the end of the arc they had in season 1.

  35. Bob says:

    Megan tries to be too funny too often in somber situations for the show to be taken as good drama.

  36. Rosemarie says:

    I miss all three characters, especially Peter! Watched the season premier last night. Not sure how I feel about the 2 new characters. I didn’t enjoy the show the way I always did before.

  37. roy burton says:

    Body Of Proof Is Great Dana Delany Is Great, But There Is Still No Need For The Changes & This Is Coming From A Guy That Thinks Alice Cooper Is Great, Anyway There Is No Need For The Changes !.

  38. roy burton says:

    Oh One More Thing ( Well Actally Two More Things ) 1 If Body Of Proof Is Canceled People Should Start A Petition And Send It To ABC. 2 If It Is Canceled It Will Be Remembered.

  39. Maud wescott says:

    To improve your show don’t have your ME hang her hair in the cadaver. Also one does not answer the cell phone with a dirty gloved hand!

  40. momofsix says:

    I really like the show but I wish they wouldn’t cuss so much. It isn’t needed. Just create a good show and let the actors do their job and leave the cuss words out. Thanks.

  41. TAMMY says:

    Funny, there is no cursing allowed in these comments. Unfortuneatly, gutter talk is allowed in the show. It’s disappointing when these charactors are suppose to be educated, respected, and “professional” people but then they talk gutter talk. I never heard Dr. G use gutter talk! Why do we need it in shows that are suppose to be intertaining. If I want to listen to gutter talk I’ll go to the nearest mall, or bar, I don’t want it in my home. Therefore, I’m not going to watch it anymore. Good show but very disappointing language!!

  42. Too bad this incredibly well acted show was cancelled and replaced with garbage.

  43. Linda says:

    Can someone answer the question did the characters of Megan and Peter have a college fling in the series Body Of Proof? My sister says yes I said no.

  44. Sue M says:

    Sorry to read that the character Peter has ‘died’ but looking forward to the new series. Thanks for some good viewing.

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