CSI: NY is keeping things fresh this season with more personal storylines and the addition of some new female blood. Natalie Martinez joined the cast in this season’s second episode “Where There’s Smoke…” as Detective Jamie Lovato, a transfer from the undercover unit who shares a unique rapport with Detective Flack (Eddie Cahill). In tonight’s installment, “Blood Out,” Lovato’s cover is inadvertently blown when a Latin street gang she once infiltrated resurfaces. To tease her big episode and preview some upcoming stories, Shane Saunders caught up with the newest cast member about joining one of TV’s hottest shows.
CSI Files: This episode is rather significant for you, you play a pivotal role in it. What can you share about the episode “Blood Out”?
Natalie Martinez: I think you get to know Detective Lovato very well. You get a bit of her backstory, kind of see where she came from and the reason why she is where she’s at.
CSI Files: It seems like you could potentially be a suspect in this case, is that accurate?
Martinez: Yeah, there’s questionable things when you’re undercover, there’s lot of things that go on. These guys don’t know who I am, why I’m there, so you’re a suspect until they figure [things] out.
CSI Files: How did the role come up? You did a pilot for Carol Mendelsohn, who is one of the co-creators, called Widow Detective, and then CSI: New York came up. How were you approached for the role?
Martinez: I did Widow Detective with Carol and I loved that whole family. They liked what I did for Widow Detective, and they had this idea for CSI, and they called me and offered me the role. They kind of wanted someone that’s street smart, that can be tough like a guy and have a little bit of sense of humor, and I think they saw that in me when they worked with me.
CSI Files: Are you like that in real life? Are you a little bit of a guy’s girl, or however you want to put it?
Martinez: [Laughs.] Yeah, I am, I’m definitely a guy’s girl. I have a lot of guy friends, and I grew up around a lot of guys. I grew up around a lot of girls too, you know, I left the house at 17. I did a lot on my own for a while, so I think that strong personality comes through. That’s kind of something that Detective Lovato kind of needs, that strong personality, that strong character. She can hold her own.
CSI Files: How many episodes are you doing this season? I just saw part of the script for episode 14, and you are in that one.
Martinez: I think right now, I think I’ve done about eight, I think. I’m in a big chunk of the whole season.
CSI Files: Are you in the crossover episode at all?
Martinez: I am going to be in the crossover episode.
CSI Files: What can you tease about that episode?
Martinez: I don’t know anything yet about that episode. We do an episode at a time.
CSI Files: There seems to be a little bit of a romantic interest between you and Eddie Cahill’s character, there’s some great chemistry with you guys. Any upcoming developments for those two?
Martinez: I don’t know what I can answer on that. Obviously there is that flirting going on, and we play around with each other and have kind of a little sense of humor with it, so maybe.
CSI Files: I don’t know how familiar you are with the show, but do you know how his last girlfriend ended up?
Martinez: Yeah, actually that’s a big joke on set, about how you’ve got to be careful. If you like Flack, you’ve got to be careful. [Laughs.]
CSI Files: In addition to New York, are you tacking any other upcoming projects?
Martinez: For right now, I’m with CSI: New York until the end of the season.
CSI Files: Should the show get renewed, is there a possibility of you coming back for another season?
Martinez: I would love it.