The newest chapter in the Law & Order universe is over before it even began. On Thursday, it was announced (via The Wrap) that NBC has pulled the plug on Law & Order: For The Defense, a new spinoff series that was scheduled to debut this fall. The series was previously given a series order this past May, but no casting information had been announced. It is unclear at this time why the series was canceled, although the network has indicated that it still plans to develop additional installments in the Law & Order franchise.
Law & Order: For The Defense was expected to put lawyers under the microscope, along with the criminal justice system, with every week delivering the promise of a contemporary morality tale. Law & Order creator Dick Wolf along with Arthur Forney, Julie Weitz, Peter Jankowski, and Carol Mendelsohn were expected to serve as executive producers, with Mendelson also showrunning.
"This new show is exciting for me personally," Wolf said in a statement when the series was first announced. "We spent the last 30 years on shows that played offense. Now it will be great to play defense, and being able to do it with Carol is an honor and an opportunity for both of us to do television that hasn't been done before."
"We can't wait to bring audiences the latest chapter of Law & Order, which will explore a different angle of the criminal justice system, said Lisa Katz, president of scripted programming for NBCUniversal Television and Streaming. "We're excited about Dick Wolf's perpetually thought-provoking approach as well his collaboration with Carol Mendelsohn, who we have been eager to do a series with for a long time."
For The Defense was set to air at 8 p.m. ET on Thursdays, leading into Law & Order: Special Victims Unit Season 23 and Law & Order: Organized Crime Season 2. The two remaining Law & Order shows will debut on Sept. 23, with a two-hour SVU episode beginning the night at 9 p.m. ET.
This is the latest Law & Order offshoot to never fully get off the ground, as a Law & Order: Hate Crimes spinoff was initially ordered to series in 2018, but has still remained in development.
What do you think of Law & Order: For The Defense being canceled before it began by NBC? Share your thoughts with us in the comments below!