LOS ANGELES (Hollywood Reporter) - Big changes are
happening at the law offices of Crane Poole & Schmidt.
John Larroquette will join the cast of ABC's "Boston Legal"
next season as a regular, while guest star Christian Clemenson
has been upped to a regular on the David E. Kelley production.
In addition, Tara Summers is joining as a regular.
Meanwhile, the options on four cast members -- Julie Bowen,
Mark Valley, Constance Zimmer and Rene Auberjonois -- to return
as regulars have not been picked up. However, it's understood
there is a possibility that any of them could appear next
season in a recurring or guest-starring role.
It's not the first time a Kelley series has seen a cast
shake-up. For example, at the end of the seventh season of
ABC's "The Practice," six major cast members were let go, and
James Spader and Rhona Mitra came on board as regulars. The
move, part of an effort to boost the show's ratings, paved the
way for the "Boston Legal" spinoff.
As for "Boston Legal's" new cast members, Larroquette --
who won an Emmy in 1998 for a guest role on "The Practice" --
will portray a senior partner from the New York offices of
Crane Poole & Schmidt who transfers to Boston. Larroquette also
won four consecutive Emmys in the 1980s for his supporting role
on "Night Court."
Clemenson won an Emmy last year for his guest turn on
"Boston Legal" as Jerry "Hands" Espenson, a fellow lawyer and
friend of Alan Shore's (Spader) who has Asperger syndrome.
Summers, whose credits include FX's "Dirt," will portray a
young associate in the Boston office.
Production on the fourth season of "Boston Legal" starts