‘CSI: Vegas’ Creator Says Filming Transported Him Back to ‘2000’

by Lauren Boisvert
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Things from the 2000s are coming back around; unfortunately, that includes low-rise jeans. Fortunately, it also includes “CSI.” Executive producer Anthony Zuiker spoke with Entertainment Tonight about his old show, “CSI: Crime Scene Investigation,” and his new show, sequel “CSI: Vegas.”

With “CSI: Vegas,” Zuiker said it felt like he was right back on the original set. “It was great to see the new faces and the veteran faces. It was great to be back in Billy [Petersen’s] trailer arm-wrestling dialogue as usual, but it was cool,” said Zuiker. “When they say ‘action,’ it’s happening. It brings you back to 2000 when it first started.”

While on set it seems like the old show, the new show is making some changes, mostly around the characters. “CSI” never focused on the characters’ home lives; fans never saw into Sara Sidle’s inner workings, or if Gil Grissom had any weird rituals at home. What “CSI: Vegas” is doing, is taking the original formula and turning it on its head.

Fans will get a deeper look into who the characters are outside of work, and that does a lot for viewership. While “CSI” did fine without all that, fans today want a connection with the characters. Seeing them at home and in places outside of work establishes those connections. “CSI: Vegas” is a new show with an–almost–completely new team, and it has to work harder to get those viewers to stick around. The old fans are going to come for Sara and Grissom, but if they don’t show us anything new, we’re not going to stay.

So, it’s important that there’s a sense of novelty alongside the sense of nostalgia on “CSI: Vegas.”

‘CSI: Vegas’: What Has Surprised Anthony Zuiker the Most?

In the interview with Entertainment Tonight, Anthony Zuiker spoke about what surprised him the most about working in “CSI: Vegas.”

“When I was in it in 2000 and started ‘CSI,’ I didn’t really recognize how the cast gelled by episode 7 […] because you’re in the thick of it and you don’t really pay attention to anything besides what’s in front of you,” said Zuiker. He went on to say that he noticed the “CSI: Vegas” cast gelled by episodes 4 and 5.

“I think those were the two episodes where I called [showrunner] Jason [Tracey] and said, ‘I think this cast is really starting to gel as a family,'” Zuiker said. “I think those were the two episodes where it hit me that they were starting to be funny and likable and jovial, and it felt like a family. The first three, they’re just trying to find their feet as actors.”

“CSI: Vegas” is currently doing pretty well in the ratings, keeping viewership around the 3 million mark. The next episode, “Let the Chips Fall,” airs on Wednesday, Nov. 3.

Outsider.com