Entertainment Weekly - The Ausiello Files (31 July 2009)
31 July 2009
Less that a year after reuninting in the jungle with leading man William Petersen, Jorja Fox is heading back to CSI this fall -- alone. But don't take Fox's five-episode to mean that Sara and Grissom's happily-ever-after was a bust. "They're absolutely together," insists executive producer, Naren Shankar, who nonetheless says Sara will drop hints at trouble in paradise. "We're talking about a coulpe of very independant individuals who have decided to share their life together. The first few months of that for any couple are a weird adjustment."
So, if it's not a breakup, what does prompt Sara to revisit the Vegas strip? Shankar and fellow executive producer Carol Mendelsohn maintain it was not a mandate from CBS to stem last season's rating slide. That said, the pair concede that the back-to-back-to-back departures of Fox, Gary Dourdan and Petersen, combined with the arrivals of Laurence Fisburne and Lauren Lee Smith, took a toll. "The family had disintegrated a little bit," Shankar says. "We had people off in their own bubbles, and we want to restore that family [feeling]. And Jorja's helping with that." Adds Mendelsohn: "Sara comes in and brings everyone together. And she helps Catherine understand that as he [new] leader, she needs to make the team cohesive and really fire on all cylinders again."Might she get an in-person assist from Petersen? "You never know when Grissom will show up on CSI," teases Mendelsohn. "The theme of [season 10] is family. And he certainly is a big part of the family -- a big part of the family." I'll that that as a yes.