Criminal Minds Back-to-Work Photo Confirms [Spoiler]’s Return

He’s baaaaaaaack!

The new season of Paramount+’s Criminal Minds: Evolution began filming on Jan. 16, and a first flurry of behind-the-scenes photos confirms that Zach Gilford will be reprising his role as first-season UnSub Elias Voit.

Instagram.com/criminalminds

Though Voit was outwitted and captured in last February’s season finale, he last was seen as a prisoner receiving a VIP visit from… someone… who clearly is curious about his knowledge of Gold Star, a top-secret something that the U.S. government clearly has been keeping on the wayyy-down low.

“You have not seen the last of Elias,” Criminal Minds showrunner Erica Messer told TVLine at the time of that finale, explaining in other interviews that she envisions Voit as the revival’s “Hannibal Lecter” character.

What’s more, that aforementioned Gold Star mystery will be revisited.

“It’s sort of like, ‘We thought we knew everything… about the [Sicarius serial killer] network and Voit and all this stuff,’” Messer said. “So for Voit to drop that bomb — and to have it mean something to [ill-fated FBI deputy director] Bailey — it’s our jump-start into the next season, for sure.”

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That said, whereas Evolution‘s maiden run focused on Voit, a singular UnSub, “We’re going to do a hybrid” this time around, Messer told TVLine. “In the first four episodes… two are a little bit serial[ized], and two are not.”

Now, when will Criminal Minds be back on our screens?!

Though the new season was greenlit a little over a year ago (and the writers room opened up not long after), the threat of a Writers Guild strike slowed the procedural’s roll. Originally, the new season was to start shooting in April 2023, but then the studio got nervous about a possible writers strike, so they put a pin in pre-production. June was penciled in as a new start date, but the WGA strike soon enough became a reality.

SAG-AFTRA then also went on strike, in mid-June, so that was two guilds that needed to hammer out new deals with the AMPTP before cameras could even think about rolling on anything.

But production on Criminal Minds‘ new season is now underway, so…. mayyyybe a summer 2024 release? Or later?

Want scoop on Criminal Minds: Evolution, or for any other TV show? Email [email protected], and your question may be answered via Matt’s Inside Line!

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