CBS is going back to a one-time monster hit that helped establish its tradition of acronym procedural dramas (“NCIS,” “FBI”), Tuesday announcing the revival of its “CSI: Crime Scene Investigation” franchise.
“CSI: Vegas,” due in the 2021-22 TV season, is a sequel to the original “CSI” series, set in the Las Vegas crime lab and featuring two of the earlier show’s stars, William Petersen as Gil Grissom and and Jorja Fox as Sara Sidle. Wallace Langham, who played David Hodges in “CSI,” also returns, but not co-star Marg Helgenberger.
They will be joined by new cast members Paula Newsome, Matt Lauria, Mel Rodriguez and Mandeep Dhillon.
“Facing an existential threat that could bring down the crime lab, a brilliant new team of forensic investigators must welcome back old friends and deploy new techniques to preserve and serve justice in Sin City,” the show description says.
Jorja Fox, left, and William Petersen, seen in an episode of the original "CSI: Crime Scene Investigation," will star in a sequel drama, "CSI: Vegas," on CBS. (Photo: Ron P. Jaffe, CBS)
The original “CSI,” which ran from 2000 to 2015, was a huge hit, ranking as the most-watched drama worldwide during several of the years it aired, according to CBS. It ran for 335 episodes, earning six Emmy Awards and 39 nominations.
The series spawned huge interest in forensic science, inspiring some viewers to go into the field, along with three spinoffs: “CSI: Miami” (2002-12); “CSI: New York” (2004-13); and the short-lived “CSI: Cyber” (2014-16).
The Vegas original, a surprise hit that first aired on Fridays, closed with a two-hour finale that reunited Petersen, who left as a series regular in 2009, and Helgenberger, who departed in 2012 and can now be seen on CBS’ courtroom drama “All Rise.”
Paula Newsome is one of the new cast members joining the CBS procedural-drama sequel, "CSI: Vegas." (Photo: Bobby Quillard)
“Twenty-one years ago, we launched ‘CSI’ and watched in awe as this new cinematic series launched an entire genre and became a groundbreaking juggernaut that still has global resonance today,” CBS Entertainment President Kelly Kahl said in a statement. “We are thrilled to welcome the next generation of forensic criminalists to the ‘CSI’ brand and unite them with the legendary characters from the past who we still love, including the extraordinary Billy Petersen and Jorja Fox.”
Kahl noted that crime-fighting technology has advanced in the years since the show’s departure, leaving new scientific areas to explore and combine “with classic ‘CSI’ storytelling” that was dedicated to solving puzzles.
“I’m excited to be bringing back the ‘CSI’ franchise to all our fans who have been so loyal to us for all these years,” executive producer Jerry Bruckheimer said in a statement. “And to be back in Las Vegas where it all started over 20 years ago makes it even more special.”
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