After 14 months of heading the Law & Order spinoff Organized Crime, showrunner Ilene Chaiken is exiting the series, which is still in production on its second season. She will be replaced by Barry O’Brien, who joined as co-executive producer in November, our sister site Deadline reports.
“Ilene did a terrific job launching the series and is a gifted writer,” said executive producer Dick Wolf. “She leaves the show in good hands and we are incredibly grateful for her contributions.”
The change will reportedly not impact production, which still has five episodes left to film for Season 2.
Chaiken was the series’ second showrunner; she stepped in to replace original head Matt Olmstead in December 2020.
Organized Crime marks Detective Elliot Stabler’s (Christopher Meloni) return to the franchise after a decade away to lead the NYPD’s organized crime unit following the death of his wife, Kathy. Season 2 has seen a number of new faces join the fray, including Mykelti Williamson (Chicago PD) as Preston Webb, Ron Cephas Jones (This Is Us) as Congressman Leon Kilbride, Guillermo Diaz (Scandal) as Sgt. Bill Brewster and Dash Mihok (Ray Donovan) as Reggie Bogdani.
Jennifer Beals (The L Word, The Book of Boba Fett) is also set to recur as the yet-to-be-named wife of Williamson’s drug kingpin and Marcy Corporation head.
O’Brien’s credits include Lincoln Rhyme: Hunt for the Bone Collector, CSI: Miami, Castle and The Following.
This show is the best L&O series on right now. I hope the quality stays the same.
Does 3 showrunners before the 2nd season has concluded filming indicate problems?
The show is no Designated Survivor which was on four?showrunners before the 2nd season came about. But yes you generally dont go through so many showrunners if things are peachy behind the scenes. I bet there’s a lot of interference from the network/studio.
Ilene Chaiken did a great job helming Organized Crime so I’m really sorry she’s leaving. Wonder if she’s headed to another Wolf series?
Law & Order:OC
Really sorry Chaiken is leaving. She’s a solid writer & L&O Organized Crime is the best of the franchise these days. SVU is all over the map; original L&O reboot is off to a rocky start. PLEASE don’t let the quality of OC slide!
It’s unfortunate that Ms. Chaiken did not last as the Showrunner, but I think it was a matter of time. I don’t know if she knew the and really understood the Law and Order Universe. We are due hardship. The concept was okay, but the current storyline was taking too long, and the direction of it was just a gut punch! This show needed to explain some of the characters departures of some of the members of the Organized Crime team! We know Morales was paid by the Wheatley character but why and how did they even meet each other? Why was the other guy dismissed ? The show needs to work on that. What happened to Wheatley’s wife Pilar and their son? Looking forward to the end of the Wheatley mess, let’s move on from all of them for good. Hopefully the new showrunner will listen to the viewers, otherwise this show will be canceled after 2 seasons.