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October 10, 2015

Who Should Replace Laurence Fishburne on 'CSI'?

by Maggie Furlong, posted Jun 21st 2011 8:00AM
Laurence FishburneThere have been quite a few TV departures lately -- some more shocking than others.

Somewhere in the middle there is Laurence Fishburne's announcement that he's leaving his post at 'CSI' after only two and a half years. Fishburne, who played lead investigator Raymond Langston, replaced series star William Petersen, who started as Gil Grissom when the series premiered 11 seasons ago.

Those were some pretty big shoes to fill at the time -- and Fishburne didn't always seem too thrilled at the comparisons -- but now who will be the third person to take the job? And how will the show look with lead actress Marg Helgenberger taking a lesser role next season, too?

We've brainstormed some good men -- and one lady -- for the position. Keep reading and share your own casting thoughts in the comments.

William PetersenWilliam Petersen
Why not bring back Petersen in the lead role of Gil Grissom, if he's willing (which he probably isn't)? The show just isn't the same without Gil's gruff, thoughtful charisma.
-- Mo Ryan
Elizabeth MitchellElizabeth Mitchell
I vote to let a lady take on the lead detective role. Especially with Marg Helgenberger on her way out, it'd be nice to shake things up at 'CSI' with another smart female and a lot of sex appeal. 'Lost' alum Elizabeth Mitchell deserves a solid gig with lots of viewers, especially after her run on 'V.'
-- Maggie Furlong
Derek PhillipsDerek Phillips
The man who played dopey Billy Riggins on 'Friday Night Lights' doesn't necessarily scream "crime scene professional," but I think Phillips has great depth as an actor and could seriously impress us as a young hotshot who takes over the CSI team. Plus I'm of the firm belief that 'FNL' cast members should be on TV at all times.
-- Jean Bentley

Edward James OlmosEdward James Olmos
EJO has the gruffness to replace Laurence Fishburn, but also be a completely new character. If 'Battlestar Galactica' taught us anything it's that EJO can play leader like nobody's business.
-- Chris Harnick

Adam ArkinAdam Arkin
Dr. Raymond Langston was a surgeon before joining the 'CSI' team; Adam Arkin played a neurosurgeon on Chicago Hope, so he's already got the doctor verbiage down. Also, he might be lookingfor a good-guy roleafter his recent stint playing a White Supremacist on 'Sons of Anarchy.'
-- Alex Moaba
Eric CloseEric Close
Eric Close certainly has the pedigree to replace Fishburne – he has several detective/FBI/investigator roles in his portfolio, including 'Chaos,' 'Criminal Minds' and 'Without a Trace.' He could also bring those pretty-boy good looks to 'CSI' and help rev up the sex appeal of the show. After 10+ years on the air, it sorely needs it.
-- Chris Jancelewicz

Like these ideas? Have other ideas for Fishburne's replacement? Sound off in the comments ...

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Michael T. Weis. He is great and can, as we saw on Pretender, get into any character needed. He needs a new show and I think would fit in with the cast. He is around the same age, and would add to the cast and not take anything away from the characters already there.

July 16 2011 at 11:58 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

Ted Danson was okay in Cheers but I don't think he has the ability to even take over Fishburnes shoes. I don't think I will be watching this anymore.....the stories are becoming mundane!

July 13 2011 at 1:42 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

Olmos, would have been my second choice. I think the b
all out of the park with Danson.
carol of orange park,fl.

July 13 2011 at 12:50 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

There will never be a CSI Leader as great as William Peterson. He made the show as Gil Grissom with his smart ways to find out what happened in the investigations. I wish he would come back along with the rest of the CSI crew that first started the show.

Mike Brady

July 13 2011 at 12:13 PM Report abuse +1 rate up rate down Reply

William Petersen is worth offering him a higher salary to ask him to come back! Ted Danson is a good choice for the current replacement, but my favorite is PETERSEN. Work on it ?

July 13 2011 at 10:12 AM Report abuse +2 rate up rate down Reply

Marg Hrelgenbrenner is my first choice for all the right reasons. I believe that only she will be able to sustain the show into a 13th season.

July 13 2011 at 9:50 AM Report abuse +1 rate up rate down Reply
Jack Wahl

Although should be finishing a project curiously enough being shot inin Nevada (CSI is shot in the greater Los Angles area ) Anthony Edwards. He's can be a geeks geek. But is willing to ride out a show in its waning years. Just riffing here.

July 11 2011 at 10:42 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

I would love to see Morgan Freeman join the show, but I'm pretty sure he doesn't do tv.

June 29 2011 at 8:51 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

I can think of a lot of strong men leads:
Victor Garber, who played Sydney’s father on Alias, if you want a strong older man lead and also, from that show, David Anders who played Julian Stark. Plus, you can’t help but like Greg Grunberg, who played recently on Heroes or Michael T. Weiss who played on The Pretender. Robert Knepper (great role as T-Bag and from Heroes); Jack Coleman, who played the dad in Heroes. Dominic Purcell (from Prison Break);

Female strong leads are Andrea Parker (she played Miss Parker on The Pretender)
Jodi Lyn O'Keefe from Prison Break.
Ally Walker is good but she just got a series.

June 26 2011 at 2:42 PM Report abuse +1 rate up rate down Reply
1 reply to Jan's comment

Michael T. Weis would be perfect!!!!!!!! He recently did a stint on "Blue Bloods" and did a great job!!!!!!!!!!!!!

July 16 2011 at 11:37 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
Spot Sterling

There is an actor that I think would give the introspection, the intensity, and sometimes the humor to fill this role and I don't think anyone has considered him: Chow Yun Fat. He has proven himself in movies to have all the above plus he has the 'look' to carry the role.

June 23 2011 at 10:41 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

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