Chicago P.D. star Jason Beghe said that following the murder of George Floyd and the nationwide Black Lives Matter movement, the NBC series will touch on issues of police brutality and racism in the upcoming season.
“I think we feel a certain sense of responsibility to address these issues, which is fun and challenging. Thankfully we have some good writers and good advisers,” Beghe told Julian McMahon during a session of Wolf Entertainment’s Unscripted YouTubeseries. “I’m really proud of our first scripts, I hope they’re not only entertaining. We’re trying, without being grandiose, to be useful.”
Beghe told the FBI actor that given the amount of time between the unintentional season 7 finale in April, the Chicago P.D. cast and writers have held conversations with each other, advisors and even police officers about how to address police brutality and racism on screen. The longer-than-expected break allowed the Chicago P.D. team to really reflect on what their mission would be for the upcoming season.
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The Chicago P.D. lead said that there will be a “perfect segue” between the season 7 finale, which saw a police officer profile a young Black man, and season 8.
“We’re continuing from there and drawing out the bigger things,” he said.
Beghe added he’s looking forward to seeing his Detective Sergeant Hank Voight, who has been violent against criminals, reflect on the role of police and its relationship with the Black community, hopefully realizing that things need to change.
“So it’s fun, but it’s a responsibility. There may be people who are offended, there may be new fans,” he said. “Who knows what’s going to happen, but we’re going in both barrels blazing.”
Chicago P.D. returns to NBC on Nov. 11. Dick Wolf executive produces with Rick Eid, Eriq LaSalle, Derek Haas, Arthur. W. Forney and Peter Jankowski.
Watch the full video below. Beghe’s comments regarding Chicago P.D. and police brutality come around the 16-minute mark.