Two things lured Academy Award winner William Friedkin into directing the 200th episode of CSI: an enduring friendship with William Petersen, and a fascination with all things underground. Friedkin and Petersen worked together in the former CSI star's breakthrough film, To Live and Die in L.A., which Friedkin wrote and directed. The two Chicago-area natives also teamed on a Showtime adaptation of Twelve Angry Men and the December 2007 CSI episode "Cockroaches," which aired about a year before Petersen left the show.
Taking a cinematic turn, CSI this week will rebroadcast "Cockroaches," an episode directed by William Friedkin that has a slew of slick techniques. And now we've got the inside word on exciting behind-the-scenes goings-on in this groundbreaking episode.The CSI ep is Friedkin's first foray into directing for television, but that didn't stop him from employing some of his filmic style for the small screen. In one scene toward the end, when Warrick is hallucinating, Exorcist fans might recognize the use of flash-forward cuts with as-yet-unseen future events. Warrick is in a confused state of mind, and Friedkin uses his trademark technique to get us inside the character's head.But Friedkin isn't the only unique element in the ep: In that same hallucination scene, the background music that comes up is courtesy Warrick's real-life persona, Gary Dourdan, who plays the song with his band, Kolade. Even the setting in "Cockroaches" is the result of combined efforts and influences. The Pigalle...
Tonight’s CSI (9 pm/ET on CBS) was directed by Oscar-winner William Friedkin, the film legend behind two of the 1970s’ biggest blockbusters — The French Connection and The Exorcist — and the man who also helped launch the career of CSI’s William Petersen by giving him the lead in 1985’s To Live and Die in L.A.
"Every year [Petersen] says to me, ‘Why don’t you do a show for me,’ and so I made the time to do it. It was terrific — I really did it for the opportunity to work with Billy again," explains Friedkin.
That said, Petersen’s Gil takes a backseat tonight to Warrick — as the investigator’s job begins to suffer because of his pill addiction. "[
Get this: Sources confirm that CSI has signed William Petersen's To Live and Die in L.A. director, William Friedkin, to helm the season's eighth episode (to air during November sweeps, natch). As such, I think it's safe to speculate that the hour, which delves into Vegas' seedy mob underworld, will include at least one killer car chase and more Wang Chung music than you ever thought you'd hear again. Kidding aside, if the Oscar winner had only made his deal a little sooner, he could have revisited his Exorcist heyday by calling the shots on Episode 6: That one revolves around a deadly, um, exorcise program.