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Law & Order: Sam Waterston Departing Series After 400+ Episodes

Sam Waterston's DA Jack McCoy is departing NBC's Law & Order later this month after 400+ episodes - with Tony Goldwyn set to join the cast.

Article Summary

  • Sam Waterston's DA Jack McCoy exits NBC's Law & Order after over 400 episodes.
  • Tony Goldwyn will join the cast as the new district attorney in the long-running show.
  • Goldwyn previously appeared in the spinoff Law & Order: Criminal Intent as Frank Goren.
  • Law & Order, returning for its 23rd season, also stars Hugh Dancy and Camryn Manheim.

Sam Waterston began his run as Jack McCoy on NBC & Dick Wolf's Law & Order Season 5 opener "Second Opinion" (1994) – and now, after more than 400 episodes, Waterston is set to say goodbye to the district attorney in an episode that's set to air later this month – on February 22nd. Fans of ABC's Scandal and fans who are familiar with the "Law & Order" franchise universe will recognize who is set to join the cast – with Tony Goldwyn (Oppenheimer) set to portray a new district attorney (though no specific details were released). Previously, Goldwyn starred in the Vincent D'Onofrio-starring spinoff series "Criminal Intent" as Frank Goren, who was killed off (clearly, a storyline decision that would make it really difficult for Goldwyn to reprise his role). For his part, Waterston would go on to win a SAG Award and be nominated on three occasions for the Emmy for Outstanding Lead Actor in a Drama Series (1997, 1999 & 2000). In addition to the series that started it all, Waterston's McCoy has also appeared in the franchise's spinoff series – Law & Order Special Victims Unit and Law & Order: Trial by Jury.

law & order
Image: NBCUniversal

"There's sadness in leaving, but I'm just too curious about what's next. An actor doesn't want to let himself get too comfortable. I'm more grateful to you than I can say. L&O's continuing and amazing long run, along with its astounding come-back, is all thanks to you and to Dick Wolf, but for whose vision, patience, perseverance, and unique combination of creative and business talents none of this would have happened. I feel very blessed. I hope to see you all on the flip side," Waterston shared in a statement. Here's a look at a recent clip of Waterston's DA McCoy in action:

"Law & Order," one of NBC's most treasured and honored dramas, returns for its 23rd season. The series is known for its unique bifurcated format and will once again examine "the police who investigate crime and the district attorneys who prosecute the offenders."

NBC's Law & Order stars Waterston, Hugh Dancy, Camryn Manheim, Odelya Halevi, Mehcad Brooks, and Reid Scott. Dick Wolf is the series creator and executive producer. Rick Eid, Pamela Wechsler, Alex Hall, Arthur Forney, and Peter Jankowski are executive producers. Law & Order is produced by Universal Television, a division of Universal Studio Group, in association with Wolf Entertainment.

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Ray FlookAbout Ray Flook

Serving as Television Editor since 2018, Ray began five years earlier as a contributing writer/photographer before being brought onto the core BC team in 2017.
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