Court is back in session for Judge Lola Carmichael (Simone Missick) with the third season of “All Rise” scheduled to launch at 8 p.m. June 7 on OWN: Oprah Winfrey Network. The courtroom drama aired for two seasons on CBS before being canceled more than a year ago.

Winfrey knew as soon as OWN President Tina Perry called to explain the cable channel had the opportunity to pick up the series, that it would be a perfect fit. The elements that gave Winfrey that feeling included the writing and the strong cast headed by Missick.

“All Rise” follows the chaotic, hopeful and sometimes absurd lives of its judges, prosecutors and public defenders as they work with bailiffs, clerks, police and jurors to bring justice to the people of Los Angeles amidst a flawed legal system. The theme for the third season will be new beginnings as it picks up the night of the mid-term election. Judge Carmichael awaits the results of her hotly contested seat while preparing to further push the boundaries of her courtroom in the name of justice. 

The third season marks a big change for Missick. Not only will she continue to play the woman under the robe but Missick will serve as an executive producer. This new role gives Missick a chance to see more of how the series comes together from the writing to production.

“We have an amazing group of storytellers doing it along with our cast that is all coming back.  And as we fill out their world, we get to see some of our characters from the first two seasons go home in a different way,” Missick says. “We get to find out a little bit more of who they are underneath, which is very exciting because that kind of diversity on screen was initially nurtured and now it’s only being flourished even more as we step out this third season.”

Cast members returning for the new season include: Wilson Bethel as Deputy District Attorney Mark Callan; Jessica Camacho as public defender Emily Lopez; J. Alex Brinson as bailiff-turned-lawyer Luke Watkins; Ruthie Ann Miles as Lola’s assistant Sherri Kansky; Lindsay Mendez as former court reporter Sara Castillo; and Lindsey Gort as private defense attorney Amy Quinn. Marg Helgenberger also returns in a recurring role as Supervising Judge Lisa Benner.

Executive producer Dee Harris Lawrence saw the biggest factor in bringing the series back was the interest by the cast to return – especially Missick.

“And the fact that we have – I think, 80% of our crew back – that doesn’t happen,” Lawrence says. “So we’re extremely excited over the fact that we have the majority of our family back, and then including new family members as well.”

The upcoming season welcomes two new recurring cast members including Roger Guenveur Smith portraying Judge Marshall Thomas and Christian Keyes who will play Robin (previously played by Todd Wiliams), Lola Carmichael’s husband who has stepped away from the FBI to become a full-time dad. 

There were two big elements that dominated the show when it was on CBS – how to keep a courtroom operating during a pandemic and Carmichael becoming a new mom. Missick praises the writers and actors for their efforts while dealing with all of the restraints created by COVID.

“It’s traumatic when you think about what we all went through and what we’re still going through, and that trauma was then shown on screen with these characters adjusting to a new normal,” Missick says. “And then for Lola to be pregnant, to be bringing life into the world, again in the midst of a global pandemic and the uprisings that then came as a result of George Floyd’s murder, and all of the things that the world was watching at that moment, it felt like a catharsis, I think, to be able to live in that reality both as Simone and, I think, as all of our characters.

“That definitely shifted, I think, where the stories were going to happen.  And it was impossible, I think, for the writers to ignore what was happening in the world because our show is so timely, because we try to tell stories that are very present.”

“All Rise” has been given an order for at least 20 new episodes to tell more timely stories. There are no details of whether those will all air consecutively or be broken into smaller groups of original shows.

No matter the scheduling, Missick is happy the courtroom drama is continuing.

“I think we all feel the same way about our excitement about this new network and what we are able to do with storytellers.  And I think that the audience that we built at CBS is going to come to OWN and love seeing these original characters in new shoes,” Missick says.