When CBS released their fall schedule earlier today, one show’s absence was glaringly obvious. The network has now made it official that CSI’s Season 15 was definitely its last one, and the celebrated procedural has been canceled. It was also confirmed that the series will come to a close with a feature-length TV movie that will bring back two of the show’s most memorable cast members of years past, William Petersen and Marg Helgenberger.
A series that spawned three successful spinoffs, CSI will bid farewell to Las Vegas with a two-hour movie that’s set to air on September 27. CBS execs and creator Anthony Zuiker were mulling over whether a movie or a limited series would be the best way to end things, and this was apparently decided to be the best way to bow out. It will presumably pick up after the Julie-related cliffhanger that Season 15 left viewers wondering about, although that season finale didn’t exactly get the same kind of attention that those of years past has.
It’s unclear just how Petersen’s Gil Grissom or Helgenberger’s Catherine Willows will re-enter the story for the movie, but we can expect a warm re-welcoming. (Though maybe not from Sara.) Petersen left the show in Season 9 to focus more on stage work, though he did appear in an uncredited cameo in Season 11 and a voiceover cameo in Season 13. Helgenberger also left the show for stage work, though she stuck around until the middle of Season 12, at which point her character left to join the FBI.
For those worried that Ted Danson was going to go off and join Fargo Season 2 and leave D.B. Russell behind him completely, fear not! According to THR, Danson (whose CSI contract expired after Season 15 anyway) has signed on to join the latest spinoff CSI: Cyber as a series regular for Season 2, and he’ll lead the cyber crime squad with Patricia Arquette’s Avery Ryan.
CSI’s cancellation was to be expected, as its shift from Wednesdays to Sundays last year left it in fairly dire straits when it came to ratings, and it was no longer the most watched TV show in the world, a distinction lost to NCIS. The shortened Season 15 order of 18 episodes was also a pretty good sign that things were coming to a close. I’m sure it’ll get rebooted in 10 years anyway.
So don’t forget to tune into CBS for the CSI TV movie finale on Sunday, September 27. To find out the future of all your other favorite shows, check out our cancelation/renewal list here.