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'Chicago Fire' spinoff loses Melissa Sagemiller as its lead




Often, when television shows are in development, the project goes through several casting changes before they settle on the final ensemble they will take to series. In the case of a spin-off series, however, casting changes become a tad more distracting. 

Melissa Sagemiller, who had been cast as the lead in the upcoming 'Chicago Fire' spin-off entitled 'Chicago PD,' has exited the project for undisclosed reasons. The reason why this is tricky? Sagemiller appeared in the second last episode of 'Chicago Fire's season, as a way to set up the upcoming spin-off series. Sagemiller's character, Detective Julia Willhite, was intended to be one of the audience's touchstones to recognize from 'Chicago Fire' that would make 'Chicago PD' part of a larger world--can they really accomplish the same goal if they recast Willhite or drop the character altogether? 

TVLine broke the news about Sagemiller's departure, however no details have emerged regarding SofferSagemiller's reason for leaving. TVLine also reported that 'Chicago PD' has their eyes on Jesse Lee Soffer for a potential regular role on the upcoming series. 

Soffer, known for his work on 'As the World Turns' and the ill-fated 'The Mob Doctor,' is reportedly in talks to join 'Chicago PD' as a series regular, in an undisclosed role. Apparently the role is still being finalized by 'Chicago PD's writing staff. 

How many other changes can we expect as 'Chicago PD' goes through the development stage? Are you a big enough fan of 'Chicago Fire' to be enticed by this police station spin-off series? Has losing Sagemiller taken the shine off of this upcoming show? 



- Melissa Sagemiller
- Jesse Lee Soffer
- Chicago P.D.
- Chicago Fire

Written by: bad_subject
Jun 16th, 2013, 7:41 am

Images courtesy of NBC


Message Posted On Feb 7th, 2014, 6:20 pm
Well, casting Sophia Bush was genius! She and voight make the show! Loving Chicago PD and I never watched Chicago Fire.

Message Posted On Jan 9th, 2014, 6:09 pm
Maybe they'll just have a drug dealer shoor her in the face.

Message Posted On Nov 24th, 2013, 7:06 pm
They will probably start the series off with Detective Julia Willhite's remains being found by the Chicago Fire Department in a torched car or building. That is just a guess ... but that is how I would do it, if I had the skill to write an episode.

Message Posted On Jun 16th, 2013, 6:04 pm
Honestly, when I first heard about this spin-off, I found it really hard to imagine it actually coming to fruition. At the time, the focus of the Police department was all about corruption and violence which would be a hard sell for a Dick Wolf production. In order to sell it, they not only ruined the potentiality of continuing that plot line which would have created a really great suspense and contention leverage point, but they ruined the character that they had built in the corrupt detective. They tried to salvage it later, but it was diluted as a focal point of the series. IMO, it really had no shine to begin with, and I'm not surprised she bailed on the project. The network or producers were willing to sacrifice both series in order to build a tentative franchise on the reputation of a production company that lost its luster last decade.
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