Producers: We Wanted 'Miami' To Be Different

By Caillan
March 3, 2003 - 10:11 AM

CSI's producers said Saturday they decided not to make CSI: Miami a carbon copy of its predecessor, despite a directive from CBS president Les Moonves that he wanted them to stick to the original formula.

"Leslie told us he wanted a clone. We knew we couldn't do a clone, because everything has its own beauty," said executive producer Ann Donahue during a panel at the 2003 William S. Paley festival, according to a report at Zap2it.

CSI: Miami star David Caruso (Horatio Cane) attributed the spin-off's new vibe to the fact that his team are police officers as opposed to self-confessed science geeks. "I think the difference is that street detectives ... have the luxury to wear their heart on their sleeve," he said. "This is a show about intelligence ... the challenge is letting the emotions seep through."

Although Miami's progenitor recently aired a special 90-minute episode devoted to exploring the lives of its two central characters, CSI has remained very much a plot-based drama throughout its three seasons. However, in Miami viewers have been given the chance to see what happens when the Florida CSIs get out from behind their test-tubes. "The power of these people's lives is that they deal with an overwhelming amount of sadness," said Caruso.

But don't expect the spin-off to deviate too much from the winning formula that made the original CSI a mega-hit. According to executive producer Carol Mendelsohn, the mandate is still to "follow the mystery ... to learn about them through their interactions in the lab."

The full report, which contains comments from executive producer Jonathan Littman and co-executive producer Danny Cannon, can be found here at Zap2it.

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