Criminal Minds is getting a titular makeover — and a new villain — ahead of its return this fall.
Paramount+ on Friday announced that the official title of the 10-episode quasi-16th season will be Criminal Minds: Evolution.
Additionally, Friday Night Lights vet Zach Gilford is joining the cast as the recurring, season-long baddie Elias Voit, an operations analyst for a global cyber-security firm who has a dark side and obsession with death. The character was previously billed as the BAU’s “greatest threat yet — an UnSub who has used the pandemic to build a network of other serial killers.” As the world opens up post-COVID, “the team must hunt them down, one murder at a time.”
The team in question includes veteran cast members Joe Mantegna (David), A.J. Cook (JJ), Kirsten Vangsness (Penelope), Aisha Tyler (Tara), Adam Rodriguez (Luke) and Paget Brewster (Emily). As previously reported, Matthew Gray Gubler and Daniel Henney will not be reprising their roles as Spencer and Matt, respectively.
Gilford’s post-FNL TV credits include L.A.’s Finest, Good Girls and, most recently, Midnight Mass.
In officially confirming Criminal Minds‘ comeback back in July, Paramount+ president Nicole Clemens said in a statement, “For 15 seasons, Criminal Minds was at the forefront of cutting-edge scripted drama as it explored the psychology behind crime — thrillingly. The series never stopped evolving during its run, and we are beyond excited to bring it back into a new era with new stories for a new generation of viewers at Paramount+. Erica, the whole cast and creative team are building a season full of new twists that we are sure will electrify audiences.”
Longtime Criminal Minds showrunner/EP Erica Messer will be back to oversee the revival, with Breen Frazier and Chris Barbour returning as writers/executive producers.