‘NCIS: New Orleans’ Adds to Cast; Creator Talks Crossovers

TCA 2014: “We’ll keep the balls in the air and make it work as best we can,” series creator says at TCA panel


The upcoming CBS drama “NCIS: New Orleans” has added “Chasing Life” actor Robert Kerkovich to its cast, creator Gary Glasberg announced Thursday at the Television Critics Association summer press tour at the Beverly Hilton hotel.

Kerkovich, whose credits also include “House of Lies,” “Masters of Sex” and “New Girl,” will play a forensic scientist who works in the Jefferson Parish morgue alongside Dr. Loretta Wade, who’ll be played by “The Shield” alum CCH Pounder.

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“We’re thrilled to have him on board; he’s a terrific talent and I think we’ll have a lot of fun,” Glasberg said of the new addition to the upcoming spinoff of the network’s massively popular “NCIS.”

In addition to Kerkovich and Pounder, “NCIS: New Orleans” will star Scott Bakula, Lucas Black and Zoe McLellan, who were on hand for the TCA panel on the offshoot.

During the panel, Glasberg discussed the delicate balance involved in creating the backdoor pilot for “NCIS: New Orleans,” which aired as episodes of the original “NCIS” series.

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“It’s a challenge,” Glasberg conceded. “When you have a planted spinoff, you want to make sure that you continue to support and service the ‘NCIS’ family, write the strongest ‘NCIS’ episode that you can, and then also take the time to introduce this amazing team that’s set down in New Orleans. You want everybody to have equal time and handle it well and present characters and let people walk away after a couple of episodes really feeling like they want to come back.”

Glasberg and company will have the opportunity to strike that balance as “NCIS: New Orleans” makes its way through its first season. He noted that the “NCIS” cast will factor prominently in the upcoming season — and, yes, Mark Harmon‘s Leroy Jethro Gibbs will be dropping in.

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“We’re currently planning an episode that’s coming up where Gibbs will make an appearance. There will be crossover between the two shows. We have a storyline where Michael Weatherly is involved, where Pauley Perrette is involved. David McCallum,” Glasberg said. “That’s the fun of what we have here is having that interaction. as to how often [crossover] happens, there’s a lot that goes into the planning of that — the schedules, making sure that mark is here and focused on ‘NCIS.’

“We’ll keep the balls in the air and make it work as best we can,” Glasberg said.