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Code Black - Season 2 - Casting Updates, Episode Order and Potential Premiere Date *Updated 9th June 2016*

New Female Doctor Casting Call

Nothing like a little sorcery to quell a fiery backlash. Code Black, which last week fired to series regulars amid a Season 2 cast shakeup, is introducing a new doctor with (admittedly very loose) ties to the Harry Potter universe.

The character, “Charlotte Piel,” is described a former child star of an iconic movie franchise — “think Hermione Granger in Harry Potter,” reads the casting notice — who gave up acting to go to medical school. Now a resident at Angels Memorial, Charlotte struggles to be taken seriously by her new colleagues. The recurring role carries with it a series-regular option.

New Co-Lead Casting Call
Thanks to Spindae2 for the heads up.

The character, Colonel David Willis, is a onetime combat doctor who has served three tours in Afghanistan. Described as heroic, blunt, irreverent, and rule-breaking, Willis lands at Angels Memorial to teach the attendings and residents new war-tested techniques. Per the casting notice, he’s a “says-what-he-thinks veteran who doesn’t suffer fools and puts the patient first over all else, including your precious feelings. Possessed with a roguish charm, gallows humor and willingness to take risks, he’s sexy to women and compelling to men.”

Season 2 Episode Order and Potential Premiere Date
Thanks to CBFan for the heads up.

The medical drama, which snagged an 11th hour renewal last month, will produce a full-season’s worth of episodes, Seitzman all but confirmed. “[We’re] told we’re slotted for 22,” he said. He even dropped an “unofficial” Season 2 premiere date: “I think it’s now Sept 21.”

Update: Deadline has released more information on future plans for Code Black as well as the reason for the casting changes.

“The concept of the show is for each season to begin on the first day for incoming freshman residents, just as in real life there is a cycle of residents coming in and residents either graduating or moving on,” Seitzman told Deadline. “Another hallmark of the show is that our fictional hospital is intensely populated. Not only do we average 800 extras per episode, but we have a revolving cast of doctors and nurses who enter and exit the show regularly. Bonnie Somerville and Raza Jaffrey are beloved by the audience, as well as the rest of the cast and crew. Their departure is painful for us, is no reflection on the extraordinary work they both did on the show.”

The reasons behind the casting changes are purely creative and not a sign of cutbacks as Code Black will boast one of the biggest casts on television, especially for a sophomore show, counting 13 regulars. It also features a very big guest cast, another way Seitzman and his team are trying to have the series reflect the real-life situation at a busy ER. (The 800 extras per episode support the title of the show, which indicates ER that is overwhelmed by patients.)

While going forward Code Black will continue to spend the lion share of its budget on cast, the series will likely be more nimble with contracts to allow the writers to take creative chances, like killing off Christina Vidal’s recurring character Gina in Season 1.

“The goal is to keep the audience on the edge of their seats, wondering if the jeopardy is real, and the only way to do it is to make it real,” Seitzman said.

What’s more, I hear CBS brass opted to go for a second season on the show — co-produced by ABC Studios and CBS Studios — while canceling two fully owned CBS drama series, freshman Limitless, which was higher rated, and sophomore CSI: Cyber, because they believe Code Black has long-term potential.

Two recurring players, Jillian Murray and Boris Kodjoe have been promoted to regular.

The first phase is now being implemented, with two series regulars, Bonnie Somerville and Raza Jaffrey, departing.

A male co-lead for Marcia Gay Harden is expected to be added, along with four new residents, all heavily recurring with an eye toward becoming regulars.

CBS' Code Black is going under the knife for season two.

The medical drama has parted ways with series regulars Bonnie Somerville and Raza Jaffrey, while also promoting Boris Kodjoe to regular, The Hollywood Reporter has learned.

The move is part of a creative decision by producers to help relaunch the Marcia Gay Harden medical drama to reach a broader audience for what is said to be a 17-episode sophomore season. The series is also expected to add a few new series regular doctors and recurring interns.

Code Black, a co-production with ABC Studios and CBS Television Studios, was a bubble series heading into May's upfront presentations with many industry insiders expecting CBS to either pick up its Jason Katims Silicon Valley medical drama Pure Genius (a co-pro with Universal TV) or renew Code Black. In a move considered a surprise by industry observers, CBS renewed the series for season two while also adding Pure Genius. The pickups of both series comes as CBS doubles down on doctors, lawyers and cops for the 2016-17 season.

In its freshman season, Code Black wasn't the runaway hit the network had hoped. The series didn't earn a full-season order but was picked up for only five additional episodes. It ended its run with a 2.0 rating among adults 18-49.

CBS declined comment.