EXCLUSIVE: Regina King, who won an Emmy for the first season of ABC’s American Crime and is back in contention for Season 2, is the first cast member to sign on for the upcoming third installment of John Ridley’s praised anthology series. In the first two seasons, the drama tackled such tough issues as race and class though the prism of crimes committed. Like it does every year, American Crime will have a new setting, new characters and new storyline for Season 3. In a statement to Deadline about King’s return, Ridley shed some light on the topics he will address in Season 3, set in North Carolina.

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Diana Ragland

“We could not be more excited to welcome Regina back for a third season of American Crime,” he said. “She is among the talent who have quickly become intimately associated with the program. As with the first two seasons, her many fans can expect a total transformation as she plays one of the complicated individuals caught up in a story that deals with labor issues, economic divides and individual rights in this season’s setting of North Carolina.”

There are no deals yet for fellow stars Felicity Huffman and Timothy Hutton, but they too are expected to return in new roles.

The new season will be filmed in Los Angeles as production is being moved from Texas after the show recently was awarded a California tax credit.

American Crime earned 10 Emmy nominations for its first season, winning for King. The series, executive produced by Ridley and Michael McDonald, is coming off a well received second season, and is considered again a contender in the limited series categories.

King is repped by ICM Partners and John Carrabino Management.