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Television

Dick Wolf at TCA stresses that his CBS series ‘FBI’ will be apolitical

PILOT
Dick Wolf is behind the CBS series “F.B.I.,” which stars Missy Peregrym, right, Zeeko Zaki, center, and Jeremy Sisto.
(Michael Parmelee / CBS)

Long associated with NBC for his suite of TV procedurals, “Law & Order” creator Dick Wolf is jumping to CBS for his new drama, “FBI.”

It’s the first time the veteran producer has had a regular prime time series on a network other than NBC in 15 years.

As part of CBS’ presentation at the Television Critics Assn. summer press tour Sunday, Wolf began his panel with an expression of excitement at being on CBS. But he was quick to stress that “F.B.I.” — in contrast with some corners of the current political discourse — would not be tied to any ideology.

“[F.B.I. agents] are assiduously nonpolitical,” said Wolf. “If you go back over the years you can’t find evidence of anything I’ve done being politically oriented. If you do that 50% of the audience is [angry] from the first frame.”

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TCA 2018: All the latest TV news from the summer press tour »

Wolf also rebuffed the idea that the timing of the show was significant due to the political climate, which led to “F.B.I.” being delayed in 2016 given the agency’s investigation into the Clinton campaign at that time.

“I don’t know how to answer except to say we’re celebrating the troops on the ground,” he said.

Wolf also vaguely addressed the “creative differences” that led to the departure of the series’ original showrunner, Craig Turk. “He did an incredible job on ‘The Good Wife.’ This is a totally different animal,” Wolf said.

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“FBI” stars Missy Peregym, Zeeko Zaki, Ebonee Noel and Jeremy Sisto.

As for jumping fron NBC to CBS, he used an analogy befitting the West L.A. location of TCA. “There was no more beachfront real estate at NBC,” Wolf said.

In addition to “Law & Order: Special Victims Unit,” Wolf has three other dramas on NBC, all based in Chicago---”Chicago Fire,” “Chicago Med” and “Chicago P.D.”

chris.barton@latimes.com

Follow me over here @chrisbarton.

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