‘Law & Order’ Star Sam Waterston Reveals What Convinced Him to Return

by Anna Dunn

In an unprecedented move, NBC has decided to revive Law & Order, a series it canceled over a decade ago. And the network couldn’t do so without at least one of its most iconic stars signing back on. Sam Waterston, who played the iconic Jack McCoy, will return to the series. Here’s what got him to come back:

It’s not as if Sam Waterston has needed to come back. Following the end of Law & Order after 20 seasons, Waterston found success elsewhere. The actor played a major role on the hit Netflix comedy, Grace and Frankie, and won over new fans. He couldn’t have played a more different role, but he found tons of success in it.

But Waterston has still agreed to come back into the Law & Order world. While speaking at a Television Critics Association panel, Waterston discussed his reasons for returning.

“[Show creator Dick Wolf] was talking about it five years ago and I don’t think he’s ever stopped talking about it,” Waterston began. Wolf was reportedly devastated when NBC canceled the series, which was just about to break a record for the longest-running drama on TV.

“One of the reasons that we’re back is because of his persistence and determination — and his conviction that it was a terrible mistake to stop in the first place. The other reason we’re coming back is because we stopped making the shows, but the audience never stopped watching them. The audience’s persistent appetite for ‘Law & Order’ is a major reason why we’re back, so thanks to them,” he finished.

‘Law & Order’ Will Re-Join The Franchise it Started

Law & Order lived on not only in re-runs but in its multitude of spinoff series. Two of those spinoffs, Law & Order: SVU and Law & Order: Organized Crime are two in-universe shows that have done incredibly well for the network. SVU has now been on a longer Run than the run Law & Order had, airing its 23rd season now.

When Law & Order comes back, it’s going to re-join the franchise it started. The show will also star Hugh Dancy, who will play ADA Nolan Price. Odelya Halevi plays ADA Samantha Maroun, Jeffrey Donovan plays Detective Frank Cosgrove and Camryn Manheim will star as Lieutenant Kate Dixon.

Fans are particularly excited to see what Hugh Dancy will bring to the series. Dancy previously played Will Graham on Hannibal, which had a three-season run before its surprising cancellation.

And, of course, many are thrilled to see Waterston back in the saddle again as Jack McCoy. It would seriously be hard to imagine a revival happening without him.

If you want to catch the premiere of the Law & Order revival, it’ll premiere on Thursday, February 24th.