A CBS franchise expands with ‘FBI: International’

Executive producer Dick Wolf now gives network a full 'FBI' night

Luke Kleintank stars in “FBI: International,” premiering Tuesday on CBS.

With two successful series already in the franchise, “FBI” is going global in adding a third.

Having also done it with his “Law & Order” and “Chicago” shows, executive producer Dick Wolf continues building on his successes with CBS’ premiere of “FBI: International” Tuesday, Sept, 21. It joins “FBI” (entering Season 4) and “FBI: Most Wanted” (Season 3) to form that night’s weekly lineup on the network, starting with a crossover episode linking all three dramas as a murder investigation lures “Most Wanted’s” Crosby (Kellan Lutz) — who knows the suspect — and takes “FBI’s” OA (Zeeko Zaki) to Budapest to work with “FBI: International” Fly Team leader Scott Forrester (Luke Kleintank) as the case expands.

Actually making “FBI: International” in Budapest, “The Man in the High Castle” alum Kleintank is grateful for the job for a number of reasons. “I lost my father during this whole pandemic,” he notes, “and there were a bunch of signs coming about this. When they officially offered me the role, it was on Father’s Day, and that was a huge sign for me. And my dad loved dogs his whole life, my nickname is ‘Tank,’ and we have a dog in the show whose name is Tank. I thought, ‘This is meant to be.’ ”

“FBI: International” premieres Tuesday on CBS.

Being friends with “FBI’s” Zaki from working with him before, Kleintank considers that another omen. He describes his “International” character as “a little bit of a cowboy. I think he loves his job so much, he forgets about his personal life. As this kind of show goes on, it reveals more, so I’m discovering him as we go along.”

After having helped launch “FBI: Most Wanted” when her own series was in its second year, “FBI” star Missy Peregrym says she’s happy to do the same now for “FBI: International.” Also seen in the “Most Wanted” part of the crossover, she reflects, “Dick’s vision the whole time was to be able to have three shows, and what’s amazing is that he’s pulling it off. To be working in a pandemic and keep them going is really remarkable.” And Peregrym isn’t surprised that all of the “FBI” iterations are filling the same night: “That was always the plan.”

Heida Reed (“Poldark”), Vinessa Vidotto and Carter Redwood also play Special Agents in “FBI: International,” with German actress Christiane Paul as a Europol operative. Kleintank has a link to the real world of law enforcement, though he maintains he’s hazy on details. “My brother works for an intelligence agency,” the actor reports. “I got him drunk one time and he told me a little bit. I still don’t really know what he does, but he’s happy to see me do this.”

Jay Bobbin

Jay Bobbin has decades of experience covering the television and movie businesses, winning Tribune Media Services’ Crown Jewel Award in 2008 for his performance in the company. Over those many years of interviewing and writing, he has spoken with everyone from Robert De Niro and John Travolta to Paul McCartney and Tony Bennett … from Meryl Streep and Julie Andrews to Taylor Swift and Carrie Underwood.

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