The 39-year-old actress is joining Suits as a new series regular for the recently ordered eighth season, USA Network announced Wednesday. Heigl will join longtime stars Gabriel Macht, Sarah Rafferty and Rick Hoffman, as well as recently promoted regular Dule Hill in the ensemble.
The Grey's Anatomy alum will play Samantha Wheeler, a talented new partner at Pearson Specter Litt, who challenges the status quo and will either become the firm's greatest ally or most powerful enemy. Production on season eight begins this April in Toronto.
“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 said in a statement. “I have watched Suits from the very beginning and feel incredibly lucky to be the newest member of the Pearson Specter Litt family.”
“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,” Suits creator Aaron Korsh said in a statement. “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.”
The news of Heigl's addition comes one day after Patrick J. Adams officially announced that he would be leaving the show after the end of the current seventh season. Meghan Markle made her departure official in November after publicly announcing her engagement to Prince Harry. Adams and Markle's final appearance on the show will be the two-hour season finale airing Wednesday, April 25.
Suits returns for the final episodes of season seven on Wednesday, March 28 at 9 p.m. ET/PT on USA Network, with season eight premiering later this year.