Long-time Criminal Minds executive producer/showrunner Erica Messer is expanding her relationship with the leading studio behind the veteran CBS drama series, ABC Studios. After a string of back-to-back overall pacts there since 2011, Messer has inked a two-year pod deal for her newly launched Erica Messer Productions.
Messer has brought on longtime friend and TV/film development executive Deborah Cincotta, with whom she worked nearly 20 years ago at Keyser-Lippman Productions, as President of Development.
Under the pod deal with ABC Studios, Messer will continue in her seventh year at the helm of Criminal Minds and her thirteenth year overall with the show overall, while also developing new original drama series for the studio via her company. Messer and Cincotta already are putting together network projects with both seasoned and promising new writers for the 2018-19 television season.
Messer is well liked by cast and crew and has provided a steady hand on Criminal Minds, successfully steering the ABC Studios/CBS TV Studios-produced crime drama through a number of behind the scenes turbulences, most recently the dramatic exit of original cast member Thomas Gibson a year ago. Last month, Criminal Minds secured its veteran cast for next season, with all four actors whose contracts were up re-signing.
“Erica has been an extraordinary showrunner for us, and we’re very excited to see what’s in store with her new production company housed at ABC Studios,” said ABC Studios president Patrick Moran.
Messer began her career in the offices of Christopher Keyser and Amy Lippman’s Party of Five before launching her career as a writer on Alias. She did stints on The O.C. and Charmed before joining Criminal Minds as a co-producer in 2005, rising through the ranks to executive producer and showrunner. In addition to running the mothership series, Messer also created, executive produced and ran spinoff Criminal Minds: Beyond Borders. She is repped by UTA and attorney Ken Richman.