CBS’ CSI revival, CSI: Vegas, features a cast mixing original stars William Petersen, Jorja Fox and Wallace Langham, joined by several newcomers, Paula Newsome, Mandeep Dhillon, Matt Lauria and Mel Rodriguez.
In addition to Petersen, Fox and Lanhgam, original cast member Paul Guilfoyle is set to reprise his role as Brass in two episodes. And there may be more beloved characters from the mothership series that would pop up on the new show.
“Anytime we can get any of our veterans back, it’s such a great plus for all of our fans,” CSI creator and CSI: Vegas executive producer Anthony Zuiker said during a TCA panel for the new series. “We have a couple more surprises in store. I could probably say that. But the fantastic blend of the original cast members with a brand new, diverse team in 2021 and beyond is such a great treat for the CSI fans and the franchise.”
Jason Tracey, the creator/executive producer of CSI: Vegas, teased that, along with the case-of-the week CSI is known for, the 10-episode season of the followup series will feature “a serialized arc that you saw begins in kind of dramatic fashion with an attack on Brass and on the lab itself, and sets in motion something that Grissom (Petersen) and Sara (Fox) primarily drive through the course of the season, but becomes something that involves all of our new characters as well.” (Brass is seen being attacked in the series’ trailer, which you can watch below.) That storyline will carry over to the Season 1 finale.
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One of the signature elements of CSI that set it apart and played a key role in its popularity was the use of cutting-edge forensic technology. That part of crime-solving has evolved dramatically over the past two decades. During the panel, the producers were asked whether they would revisit an old case from the original series that can be tackled with new methods.
“Science has changed, technology has changed, forensics has changed, and I think the great benefit to the franchise for CSI: Vegas is you can really see the upgrade in not only the storytelling, but the cinematic storytelling, and the forensic gadgets, and just how to tell stories in 2021 versus 2000 proper,” Zuiker said. “That’s what’s really, really exciting. Because we have a whole treasure trove of never—heard—before episodes, 814, we can go back and explore those for many, many seasons.”
Tracey gave an example of how CSI: Vegas is keeping up with the advancements in forensic science.
“One of the big ones that’s changed the most in the last five or six years since the show has been on the air is in the area of genetics,” he said. “The show I think taught the world a lot about what DNA is, but now what scientists are able to do with DNA is really something special. And that’s one of the reasons why our new character played by Paula, Max Roby, is running the lab, is from a genetics background. What she’s able to do, sort of parsing what that double helix tells you about somebody’s traits phenotyping. We can now build a story around a pool of suspects, Agatha Christie style, that have brown hair and blue eyes in a way that 10 years ago that was simply impossible.”
Fox and Petersen both said that they were, as Fox put it “a little rusty on all things science” at first reprising their characters in the lab but both being back and getting to interact with the new members of the CSI team.
“It’s a real thrill to be able to do this with everybody again,” Peteresen said.