CBS’ big Nancy Drew mystery has been solved: Person of Interest‘s Sarah Shahi has nabbed the coveted title role in the network’s contemporary take on the classic Carolyn Keene novels.
Drew, which has thus far only received a pilot order, finds the iconic crime solver — now in her thirties — putting her “uncanny observational skills” to work as a detective for the NYPD, while also navigating “the complexities of life in a modern world.”
CBS president Glenn Geller recently confirmed that the network was seeking a “diverse” actress to take on the role of Nancy. “I’d be open to any ethnicity,” he said. “We’re not casting color-blind, we’re casting color-conscious. It’s not ‘the best actor wins,’ it’s the right roles for diversity. … It really is about being conscious of what America looks like.”
Shahi joins a cast that also includes ER‘s Anthony Edwards (as Nancy’s dad), Graceland‘s Vanessa Ferlito (as a fellow NYPD detective) and The Good Wife‘s Felix Solis (as Nancy’s boss at the NYPD).
Joan Rater and Tony Phelan (Grey’s Anatomy) will co-write and executive-produce with Dan Jinks.
In addition to multiple film adaptations, Nancy Drew has been brought to the small screen three times: The Hardy Boys/Nancy Drew Mysteries, which ran from 1977 to 1979; the one-and-done 1995 Nancy Drew series; and the 2002 TV movie (originally intended as a series), which starred Maggie Lawson as the amateur sleuth.
Shahi returned to Person of Interest on a full-time basis for the yet-to-be-scheduled Season 5, after taking a maternity leave. Curiously, TVLine has learned that the actress’ deal puts Drew in first position ahead of a potential — yet extremely unlikely — sixth season of POI. “My guess is [Season 5] is the final season,” executive producer J.J. Abrams said last month at the Television Critics Association winter press tour. “The only heartbreak there is how much good story there was to come if it were to have continued.”