CSI: Crime Scene Investigation executive producer Carol Mendelsohn wasn’t pleased with reports of Dr Ray Langston’s (Laurence Fishburne) “wardrobe makeover” at the start of season ten.
As CSI Files previously reported, the news about Langston’s wardrobe change was taken out of context. CBS Entertainment President Nina Tassler made the comment in jest, but members of the media reported the information as fact. “It is so unimportant to what the show is and where we’re going that, to me, it demeans the show,” Mendelsohn said. “Not that Nina said it, because she said it as a joke. But for it to be reported that a wardrobe makeover is the most important news coming out of CSI?”
The real news at the time was the continuing transition from former leading man William Petersen (Gil Grissom) to Fishburne. The show went about the switch a little differently—instead of coming in as the new head of the lab, Fishburne’s character started at the bottom of the lab totem pole. “It was what attracted Laurence to the role — to come in as a newbie and to learn,” Mendelsohn explained. “And he will have a very accelerated learning curve. He will blossom this year into the true CSI that Grissom saw in him when they first met. I think Fishburne was integrated so well. He’s an incredible talent. We’re so lucky to have him.”
Having an older character change careers was a realistic choice, Mendelsohn added. “There’s so many people today who aren’t just one-career people,” she said. “Many of us have had a number of careers. And I think he’s very reflective of the working population.”
Although Langston has been around for a while and earned a promotion on the job, the character is still adjusting to his new career. “The one thing that is true is that Fishburne will continue the transition from Professor Langston to CSI Langston,” Mendelsohn said. And the rest of the CSI team will continue to adjust as season ten continues. “Our team, just like a family in real life, is going through a transition. Trying to find their equilibrium,” the executive producer added. “And the theme of the season is really family. It will be about Catherine [Willows, Marg Helgenberger] and Nick [Stokes, George Eads] and Greg [Sanders, Eric Szmanda] and Langston and Sara [Sidle, Jorja Fox] finding the right balance to be Grissom’s team. The team he left behind.”
Source: Deseret News