Out with the Markle, in with the Heigl.
Following the formal announcement that Suits stars Patrick J. Adams and Meghan Markle will be leaving the hit USA Network drama after season seven, the series is bringing in former Grey's Anatomy star Katherine Heigl to challenge the status quo.
According to The Hollywood Reporter, Heigl will join the Aaron Korsh-created drama as a series regular, starring opposite Gabriel Macht as Samantha Wheeler, a new talented partner that "will either become the firm's greatest ally or most powerful enemy."
Heigl joins a season eight cast that also Macht, Sarah Rafferty, Rick Hoffman and Dule Hill, who was promoted this week to regular after recurring in the current seventh cycle.
"Joining Suits was the perfect organic way to not only collaborate with an EP I admire deeply, but to also become part of a show and cast that I am an immense fan of," Heigl told The Hollywood Reporter. "I have watched Suits from the very beginning and feel incredibly lucky to be the newest member of the Pearson Specter Litt family."
Heigl's addition to the cast comes as series stars Adams and Markle are set to leave the series following the upcoming season seven finale, set to air April 25. The role for Heigl marks her first cable series regular part after broadcast gigs on Grey's Anatomy, and shortlived series like CBS' Doubt and NBC's State of Affairs.
"On behalf of the entire Suits team, I am extraordinarily excited to welcome Katherine Heigl into our family — I have always been a big fan of her work and was delighted to discover she was an avid Suits fan herself," said Korsh, who also serves as showrunner. "I cannot wait to have her come play with our entire cast and crew. Unfortunately, the same cannot be said for Harvey, Louis, Donna and Alex as the mysterious Samantha Wheeler is a direct threat to their status quo. One thing is for sure — Samantha's wit, charm, loyalty, strength and vulnerability will all be put to the test as she muscles her way into the firm currently known as Pearson Specter Litt."
Fans of the legal drama took to Twitter to respond to the casting news.
This is LeBron James to the Heat all over again. https://t.co/Tof0p2nkGN— Josh Sorokach (@Joshsorokach) January 31, 2018
With both Dule Hill and Katherine Heigl, I'm guessing Suits season eight is playing the not-so-long con of getting revenge on CBS for the swift cancellation of Doubt. I hope Judith Light joins the cast next.— LaToya Ferguson (@lafergs) January 31, 2018
Heigl will make her debut in the series' upcoming eighth season. Suits will be back for the second half of season seven on March 28 on USA Network.