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Anthony Zuiker Talks Sunnier, More Fun 'New York'

By Christian
February 22, 2005 - 9:23 AM

CSI creator Anthony E. Zuiker yesterday admitted the New York spin-off probably started out a little too somber for its own good.

"We were going much too dark in the tone of the show, too aggressively, and there's no doubt we lost some viewers in that patch," Zuiker told the New York Times' Patrick D. Healy, who wrote an article on the current trend of shows focusing on the seedy side of the Big Apple. Healy noted this is primarily due to the declining popularity of the sitcom genre, combined with the success of crime dramas such as NYPD Blue and Law & Order that naturally take a more somber view of the city. But at least for CSI: New York, television bosses quickly decided it should be possible to tell stories of murder and deception while not losing touch with the "sunnier, more fun" side of New York.

"The series was presenting one hue, one neighborhood, when there are so many different voices and tones and styles that you really don't have in other cities," CBS Entertainment president Nina Tassler, a New Yorker herself, told the newspaper. "They would stay downtown for too many stories, and they realized that their storytelling was best served in finding a balance."

As a result, the network has now given Zuiker a mandate to lighten up the show, and he promised to make good use of that. "We want to earn the right to go darker, rather than open up dark. [...] Now we're shifting to take a brighter New York perspective. When I go to New York City, I feel like I laugh a little, cry a little, learn a little and come home a different person. I want to capture all of that."

Several comments from other creators of New York-based shows, as well as a theory by King of Queens' Jerry Stiller on why there's not enough joy in New York, read the full New York Times article. Thanks go out to Al Forno for this!

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