It's not exactly surprising, but it is official. Chris O'Donnell will lead the newest Naval Criminal Investigative Service after all. The star of Scent of a Woman has finalized his deal to be the lead in CBS' NCIS spinoff, says The Hollywood Reporter.
As previously reported, O'Donnell will play NCIS agent Callen, a legend in the field and leader of the new squad. He'll be joined by LL Cool J, who plays a former Navy SEAL, and Louise Lombard, Peter Cambor, and Daniela Ruah. All the characters will be introduced in an episode of NCIS later this year, with the series expected to take off on its own next fall.
Over at Grey's Anatomy, recurring actress Jessica Capshaw has been bumped up to a more major role with the possibility of becoming a regular next season, reports EW.com. Capshaw plays Arizona Robbins (where do they come up with these names?), the lesbian girlfriend of Callie, and was originally supposed to only be on for a handful of episodes. With the move, ABC proves to its critics that a lesbian storyline wasn't at the heart of the controversial firing of actress Brooke Smith, or maybe that's exactly what they want you to think!
Bill Lawrence (creator of Scrubs) has fleshed out his cast for Cougar Town, with Busy Phillips, Dan Byrd, and Brian Van Holt joining lead Courteney Cox. In the show, Cox plays a 40-something mom who is newly single. Phillips, recently seen in He's Just Not That Into You, will play Cox's friend and co-worker. Byrd, a TV.com favorite as the star of Aliens in America and Sylar's sidekick in Heroes, will play Cox's son. Van Holt (John From Cincinnati) will play Cox's ex-husband and father to Byrd's character.
Finally, Brittany Snow (American Dreams) has been cast as the young Lily van der Woodsen in the forthcoming Gossip Girl spinoff/prequel. The show will have its groundwork laid on the May 11 episode of Gossip Girl, and will be part of the CW's 2009-2010 fall schedule if the network's executives have their heads screwed on straight.