‘CSI: Cyber’ EPs, Cast Discuss ‘Relevance’ of Their Show in Wake of Sony Pictures Hack

TCA 2015: CBS franchise Executive Producer Anthony E. Zuiker states latest installment “will provide a level of entertainment and also edu-tainment”


The original “CSI: Crime Scene Investigation” team is back together for 2015’s “Cyber” installment, and the gang discussed their new version and how it mirrors current crime in the wake of 2014’s Sony Pictures hack.

“It just comes back down to relevance,” Executive Producer Anthony E. Zuiker told reporters when prompted about the recent leaks that made headlines. “We knew cybercrime was on the horizon as of five years ago. It was one of those things that first came on the scene that was very, very scary for everybody.”

“As time goes on, you cannot pick up a newspaper or go into a CNN app and not find something cybercrime oriented,” he continued. “I believe our audience will be very curious about what this subject matter is, and ‘CSI: Cyber’ will provide a level of entertainment, and also edu-tainment.”

Zuiker explained that in addition to the plot timeliness, his team purposefully elected to do a non-physical environment — in this case, cyberspace — in place of a fourth city, calling the concept “the reboot and future of our franchise.”

His partner, fellow Executive Producer Pam Veasey, added that her return to the franchise was based on an inability to turn it down after seeing star Patricia Arquette play Avery Ryan intermittently on the regular “CSI.” The Ryan character is based on Mary Aiken, a show producer and cyberpsychologist, which the real-life inspiration explained to reporters is the study the impact of new technology on human behavior.

“I feel like we’re in the dawn of a new time,” Arquette, who won a Golden Globe Sunday night for her work in “Boyhood,” said of the futuristic subject matter her show tackles. “This is like the Industrial Revolution.”

Plus, there’s a bigger picture to her lead role, she added, another one that breaks the mold of the more traditional procedurals.

“To be a woman in law enforcement, on television — it’s sort of important,” Arquette said.

“CSI: Cyber” debuts on Wednesday, March 4 at 10 p.m.