Welcome to Danny Pino Online, your number one source for everything regarding actor Danny Pino. Danny is best known for his role as Detective Scotty Valens on Cold Case and Detective Nick Amaro on Law and Order: Special Victims Unit. Here at Danny Pino Online, we hope to provide you with the latest news, photos, and more concerning Danny. Be sure to visit us daily to see if anything is new.
February 5th, 2013  /  Jessica

November 14th, 2012  /  Jessica

Don’t forget to tune into an all new episode of SVU tonight on NBC at 9/8c! Here’s a sneak peek at the episode. Warning: Do not watch if you wish to remain spoiler free!

October 5th, 2012  /  Jessica

Warning: Spoilers! Do not watch if you wish to remain spoiler free!

September 26th, 2012  /  Jessica

Warning: Spoilers! Read at your own risk!

If May’s season finale of Law & Order: SVU was meant to send a message, it was received loud-and-clear. The shocking cliffhanger (a dead hooker in the bed of Dann Florek’s Captain Cragen) was a drastic departure for the long-running procedural. Viewers can thank showrunner Warren Leight for this dramatic turn of events. Leight stepped into the show amidst its biggest shake-up ever: Christopher Meloni’s highly publicized departure after 12 years. “Any show on this long would have needed to change, some rejuvenation,” affirms Leight, “and [Chris] leaving, in a way, opened up a lot of new possibilities. The thing that you worry about most is the thing that often works in your favor.”

Heading into season 14, which premieres tonight. SVU has some momentum to maintain. Leight is confident that introducing some new faces (Paget Brewster, Adam Baldwin) and dynamics (key word: suspicion) will be just the trick. If the show’s performance as NBC’s highest-rated drama finale last season is any indication, he may be on to something. Read what Leight has in store for SVU‘s double-barrel opener below, plus see how a certain ultra-popular erotic novel makes its way onto the show.

ENTERTAINMENT WEEKLY: You’ve been very conscious that SVU is the last Law & Order show on the air. With a year under your belt and a season underway, how is SVU 2.0 shaping up?
WARREN LEIGHT: This year, I’ve made some changes in the writing staff, the producing staff. Everyone understands what the goal is for this year. … So, just in terms of the way we run the show, people are a little more on. I know who my actors are, they know who I am. It’s easier to write for people when you knew what their strengths are. I know everyone’s strengths, and now what I want to do a bit of this year is make some of the actors feel a little bit uncomfortable, push them out of their comfort zone. Last year I had to learn their comfort zone so this year I can tear them down. [Laughs]

You said everyone on the writing/producing staff had the same goal in mind. What is that goal?
I don’t want anyone to look at this show 14 years in and go, “Oh, this is tired,” or “They’re going through the motions.” I want people to go, “This is as fresh as anything that’s on right now.”

Certainly, the end of last season was a big departure with the Cragen cliffhanger…
I wanted a cliffhanger, and that was definitely not part of the [creator and former showrunner] Dick Wolf culture. It was outside what people expect for the show. A little bit, I want to shake up expectations. There will be more storylines about our lead characters, a little bit more emotion between them. I would like to see more of the interpersonal dynamic between our detectives. There’s obviously going to be a big investigation after the dead hooker is found in Cragen’s bed, and there’s going to be a lot of fallout from that investigation.

You said everyone has secrets. Such as…?
[This season tracks] a tale of corruption through NYPD, through the DA’s office, through the upper echelons of government. How our detectives react to that, and who’s trusting whom as this investigation goes on is pretty interesting. For example, it’s not like Benson (Mariska Hargitay) and Amaro (Danny Pino) have been partners for 12 years and know everything about each other, so there’s a little room for suspicion. Room for suspicion is a wedge.

And you’re really ripping their worlds apart.
Oh yeah.

Even if they did trust each other, this would be a massive ground shift.
It’s never good when your boss is arrested, is found in bed with a dead hooker. That’s never good. Especially if he’s the captain of your unit at the NYPD.

I know Paget Brewster is coming in as the head of the D.A.’s Public Integrity Unit. I’m sure she’s going to shake things up a little bit…
That is to the DA’s office what IAB is to cops. They watch everything. They know everything. … Paget is stepping into a war between two escort agencies. She’s stepping into four or five unsolved murders. It begins with the police commissioner’s bachelor party. She’s got to figure out who to trust — and fast. Benson wants to earn her trust because she’s hoping maybe Paget will realize Cragen is innocent — as Benson knows Cragen must be. Paget is looking desperately for someone. … The two of them, basically, are trying to work together. Benson is trying to work with her in hopes of proving Cragen’s innocence, and Paget is trying to enlist her support because she doesn’t have too many other people she can trust.

We’re also bringing Adam Baldwin in as a new captain. He’s a substitute or temporary captain, but he’s stepping into a unit that’s openly in revolt, basically. … He’s going to try and start to put his own imprint on this department. [It’ll] push people a little bit out of their comfort zones.

NEXT: A closer look at Olivia’s arc, and — you knew it was coming — SVU takes on 50 Shades of Grey

Going back to Olivia. She went through a lot of changes last season.
When the season began, she was feeling untethered and wary of the new people [after her partner of 12 years left the unit]. She was beginning to form relationships with Amaro particularly and with Hayden (Harry Connick Jr.). Then it all kind of blew up in her face. Then her captain — who was her rock last year after [Stabler] left — they had some very strong scenes together. Clearly, the captain is a father figure to Olivia. I can’t imagine anything shaking her up more than to find out that he’s possibly not who she thought he was.

And in the midst of this, Dean Winters is back as Cassidy, Olivia’s ex/colleague. Is that a good thing or a bad thing?
It’s a good thing and a bad thing. He’s an interesting guy, and he’s not the kid he was from those early SVUs that he was in. He wasn’t right for this unit, and he wasn’t too sharp. He wasn’t well-educated. He’s obviously survived and been doing dangerous work for three years. But can you trust him completely? Certainly Amaro doesn’t.

I can’t imagine the time would be right any time soon for Benson to consider motherhood or a serious relationship.
I think it’s hard. As the season opens, her new partnership is in trouble — with Amaro. Her captain is in serious trouble. The unit she’s worked for is falling apart. She has a new captain she’s supposed to somehow deal with. The DAs she’s worked with are under a cloud of suspicion — or she’s not allowed to talk to them. When it rains, it pours.

I’m hoping amongst all this seriousness and turmoil, we’ll get some good Fin (Ice-T) comic relief in there. He’s my favorite.
Fin’s character is a survivor. He provided a lot of stability for Rollins (Kelli Giddish) last year. We have a scene where Adam Baldwin’s character looks at Fin early on and basically says, “Last I heard, departmental dress code is business attire,” and he looks at Fin.

So Fin is probably the most equipped to deal with the shifting tides, but even he is going to have some issues?
Whether or not Fin actually responds to that… [Laughs] Fin undercover would be in a suit and tie, I think.

What else can you tease this season?
We sort of have two premieres this year. We’re back on Sept. 26 then we got off the air until Oct. 10. That episode deals with the author of a book called 25 Acts, which is a woman’s journey through the world of domination and submission. So we’re keeping time, we hear.

Law & Order ran for 20 seasons. Do you see SVU lasting for another six years?
The idea is not to run on fumes and make sure everyone who’s here wants to be here and wants to keep it alive. There is no end to the number of topics in the news that make for interesting episodes for us and interesting issues to explore. … Raising awareness about certain issues is part of what makes the show valuable. I don’t think we ever want to sensationalize rape or the victimization of people. What we want to do is get people aware of issues in our society and get people thinking and talking about them, and shed light on the dark corners of this world. That’s a valuable function. … I would love to see [how things go this year]. I think most people assumed we wouldn’t make it through last year. It was nice to get a little attention, show that the show had a reason to exist. We’ll see….

SVU premieres tonight at 9 p.m. ET.

Source: here

September 23rd, 2012  /  Jessica

Warning: Spoilers! Do not read below, if you wish to remain spoiler free!

Law & Order: Special Victims Unit kicks off its 14th season by asking what once may have been an unthinkable question: Is Capt. Cragen a murderer?

“He should have not put that dead hooker in his bed,” executive producer Warren Leight says of last season’s cliff-hanger with a laugh. “Even if we know Capt. Cragen, it’s just never good to wake up with a dead hooker in your bed. That means you did something wrong.”

But did he? While Cragen (Dann Florek) comes under investigation, Detective Benson (Mariska Hargitay) will work furiously to prove his innocence, even though she has a new temporary captain (guest star Adam Baldwin) breathing down her neck. As Benson gets closer to the truth, she’ll learn what Leight says is a theme for the season: Everybody has secrets.

Read on to find out how quickly Cragen’s legal woes will be wrapped up, whether or not Detective Amaro (Danny Pino) can hold his marriage together, and why Law & Order: Criminal Intent‘s Kathryn Erbe will pay the SVU squad a visit this season. Plus: Will we finally meet Munch’s mother?

You’re coming back from a very big cliff-hanger. How challenging was that?
Warren Leight:
I enjoyed ending the season that way. And then we got lucky because NBC said they wanted us to do two hours [on premiere night]. They didn’t necessarily mean a two-parter. That’s a big departure for Law & Order to have a three-part story spread out over three episodes. It required a little bit of persuasion, but essentially we have a movie that we shot over the course of 24 days. There are high stakes. Not only is there a dead hooker in Cragen’s bed, but obviously there’s a lot of tension between Amaro and Benson. We kept a lot of plates spinning and it was just a thrill to get to work in a longer form, For Dann Florek I don’t think it was too much fun. I think he prefers a tailored suit to an orange jumpsuit.

You could have presumably brought any of the SVU detectives under suspicion as last season’s big twist. Why Cragen?
He’s the father figure. You think he’s the last guy that would happen to, but he has his demons. We believe he has them under control. He was by far the most interesting character to involve, and if it’s a frame-up, he would be a good guy to frame. There was that weird little episode, “Russian Brides,” where he went on that date. We saw a side of him we haven’t seen before. One of the things you could take away from that scene is underneath his character’s stoicism is some loneliness. And loneliness can lead people to make bad decisions.

Will Cragen’s case be resolved in the premiere, or will it take some time?
Leight: Some things are resolved, but there are long-lasting repercussions. It’s not Homeland. I admire and I envy their schedule, but I can’t drag it out for 23 episodes. What we’re trying to do is maintain continuity from one episode to the next. Episodes can be freestanding, but if Amaro and Benson have a tough time in one episode, it’s not like the next episode it didn’t happen. So we have a lot more continuity, a lot of story lines spilling over.

Paget Brewster is guest-starring on the premiere. What can you tell us about her character?
Leight: She’s playing Paula Foster, who’s the head of the D.A.’s public integrity unit. All of this is falling into her lap. She has a renegade squad that is desperately trying to free the Captain. She has Amaro as the last person to see the dead hooker alive. She obviously has pressure from the mayor’s office saying, “Clean this up and clean it up now.” She’s between a rock and a hard place, and her relationship with Olivia is very interesting. Olivia is doing everything she can to free Cragen, and Paget Brewster’s character is trying to figure out what the hell happened.

Is the relationship completely antagonistic, or does Benson realize that Foster could actually help her?
They have to find a way to work together or neither of them is going to get what they need. But there’s suspicion on both sides. The cop wants the arrest; the DA wants the conviction. And those are two very separate things. So Paget’s character has some very tough choices to make, and Benson is more of a true believer. She doesn’t understand that compromises need to be made from time to time.

How will Benson & Co. respond to their new interim captain, played by Adam Baldwin?
Leight: Adam’s character is a fixer. He comes into situations that are all screwed up, and his job is to figure out who’s straight, who’s corrupt, who can he trust to restore order. If he does the job right, he moves on. He’s politically connected at NYPD and he likes moving the pieces on the board. That’s an interesting guy to throw into SVU, because Olivia and Amaro are pieces that don’t like other people moving them.

We’ll also see Amaro’s wife again in the premiere, right?
Yes. We’re trying to show the cumulative toll this sort of work takes on our heroes. We know his marriage is on very shaky ground. It was working while his wife was overseas and since she’s come back it’s just been a disaster. Their big question is: Can they work through it or is it over?

What personal stories are you hoping to tell with the other characters?
We’re hoping to see Rollins’ sister arrive at some point this season. We referenced her a bit last year, and we hope to see a little bit of what shaped Rollins [Kelli Giddish]. I’d love to get a bit more for Finn [Ice-T], who’s been underserved in some ways. I’d like to find out a little bit more about him, like: Does he have a house? [Laughs] We saw a little bit of his son last year but there’s clearly more to understand about him. We may even get a glimpse of Munch’s [Richard Belzer] mother. We don’t know anything about her. I think it’s kind of interesting.

Has crafting this season been different now that you’ve been on the job a year?
It’s great to have a season under my belt. There was something exciting about hitting the ground running. I feel liberated from the “Can this show survive without Elliott?” thing. That drove me crazy last year. We were on a network that was having problems and the headline writers kept blaming [Christopher] Meloni‘s departure for the show’s low ratings. The thing I am most proud of is at the end of the year, our finale was NBC’s highest-rated finale. We had seven episodes in a row, and each week the ratings stepped up. I felt like, “Now we know there is a show after Elliott,” which I always knew that there was. I enjoyed being underestimated. It was like a little challenge, and this year the challenge is to keep it interesting and to get past the transition.

You’re bringing Law & Order: Criminal Intent‘s Kathryn Erbe to your squad room this season. How did that happen?
I did Criminal Intent for seven years. One of the things that’s strange is SVU fans watch Law & Order and Criminal Intent fans watch Law & Order, but Criminal Intent fans do not watch SVU. There’s not as much crossover between those shows as you might guess. And now that there’s only one show left, I’d like to bring those fans together. When we started to plot the fourth episode, we needed a Homeland Security agent. I didn’t want to just keep throwing new people into this mix, and our casting director said “What about your old friend Katie?” We were all like, “That’s it. We’re done.”

So what is her role exactly?
Once Katie said yes, we retooled the script a bit. The backstory is she worked the Major Case Unit for over a decade. Her partner left and she was looking for something new. She’s on loan to Homeland Security on a joint terrorism task force, which is high stakes and her character can handle that. It was great to have scenes between Katie and Mariska. These are two women who had long-term partnerships with difficult guys. These are two people who’ve been underestimated — who’ve worked just as hard, just as long —and people don’t quite get how good they are.

Is this a one-time thing, or will we see more of her?
Leight: She’ll come back. I don’t know exactly when, but she’ll be coming back. Katie is so believable as an NYPD cop. The notion of bringing in someone new when she was just sitting there seems crazy to me. She’s tough and she can be funny, but don’t mess with her.

Safe to assume you’ll still be ripping from the headlines this season?
I would say there’s an element of headline-ripping. Our third episode of the season is very much a courtroom drama with Roger Bart and Raul Esparza and Anna Chlumsky. Raul comes in as a DA loaded for bear. Anna Chlumsky’s character has written a book called Twenty Five Acts about a woman giving her life over to bondage and domination. The book is a runaway best seller and every woman in America is reading the book. She goes on a talk show, then goes out to dinner with the host, and then things turn ugly between her and the host.

Do you have an overall theme for the season?
We’re doing a lot with secrets. The secrets people keep and the damage those secrets do is part of the first five episodes. It’s an interesting way of looking at a lot of what happens in sex crimes. People stay in denial and hide things in themselves. People can seem to be decent, but people lead double lives and. How those secrets come out and what happens when the secrets come out is an interesting way of framing a lot of the episodes.

And will we learn that our heroes have their own share of secrets?
I think we have to. It’s not fair for just the bad guys to have secrets. In the premiere, Paget’s character says to Olivia, “Everybody has secrets. You do. I do. The captain does.” So, of course we’ll be seeing some of the ones our guys have. Obviously something’s going on with Cragen, but no one is exactly what they seem to be.

Any hints?
[Laughs] If I give you that, then they’re not secrets.

Law & Order SVU‘s two-hour Season 14 premiere airs Wednesday at 9/8c on NBC.

Source: here

September 21st, 2012  /  Meghan

Colby: Can’t wait for Law & Order: SVU to come back! Any scoop on the new season?
“There are some lingering affects that rattle the core of our ensemble,” Danny Pino tells us of last season’s finale, which found Captain Cragen under suspicion of murder. “[Captain Cragen] is in the crosshairs. So is Amaro.” Yikes! As for what we can expect from Amaro in season 14, Pino teases, “You’ll see his relationship with his wife and how he navigates through that…or not.”


September 18th, 2012  /  Jessica

Warning: Do not watch, if you wish to remain spoiler-free!

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Welcome to Danny Pino Online, your number one source for everything regarding actor Danny Pino. Danny is best known for his role as Detective Scotty Valens on Cold Case and Detective Nick Amaro on Law and Order: Special Victims Unit. Here at Danny Pino Online, we hope to provide you with the latest news, photos, and more concerning Danny. Be sure to visit us daily to see if anything is new.
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