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Fred Thompson Signs Off From Law & Order

Fred Dalton Thompson is leaving NBC's Law & Order as he contemplates a run for the presidency.

Show creator and executive producer Dick Wolf today released the following statement:

"I've spoken to Fred today, and although he told me he has not made a firm decision about his political future, he felt that given the creative and scheduling constraints of the upcoming season, he asked to be released from his responsibilities to the show.”

“Fred's work ethic and commitment to not only Law & Order but Bury My Heart at Wounded Knee has been both enormous fun and creatively gratifying for me. I will sincerely miss working with him on a regular basis and I obviously wish him the best of luck with whatever the future holds." 

Thompson has played district attorney Arthur Branch on the show for the last five seasons.