Niecy Nash is going from criminal activity in Claws to FBI newbie in the potential The Rookie spinoff.
Nash will guest star in a two-episode arc during The Rookie’s current fourth season. She will portray the oldest rookie in the FBI Academy and the episodes will serve as a backdoor pilot to the potential spinoff.
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Nash will play Simone Clark, who is described as the living embodiment of a dream deferred. In the episodes, her trainee will unite with LAPD officer John Nolan (Nathan Fillion) and the L.A. division of the FBI who enlist Clark when one of her former students is suspected of terrorism following an explosion at a local power station.
“I’m so excited to guest star on The Rookie and bring Simone Clark to life! She is a spirited and spicy fish out of water,” Nash said in a statement. “The cast is amazing and I can’t wait to play!”
The potential series comes from The Rookie creator/executive producer Alexi Hawley, executive producer Mark Gordon and studios eOne and ABC Signature.
Much like the Chicago, Law & Order, FBI, 9-1-1 and the Grey’s Anatomy franchises which thrive on crossovers, The Rookie and the spinoff will exist in the same universe, allowing characters to move back and forth.
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A series pickup for the offshoot would expand The Rookie to a two-show franchise, with the original also expected to return for a fifth season. Four seasons in, The Rookie remains one of ABC’s most watched drama series, just behind Grey’s Anatomy, Station 19 and The Good Doctor, drawing solid linear viewership in addition to strong delayed/streaming lifts. Season to date, The Rookie builds to 9.3 million total viewers after 35 days of multi-platform viewing, up +236% over its Live+Same Day average; its adults 18-49 jump is +519%.
The Rookie resumes its 22-episode season on Sunday, Feb. 27 at 10/9c. Airdates for Niecy Nash’s backdoor pilot episodes have not yet been determined.