Before Sela Ward signed on with ‘CSI: NY‘ (Fridays at 9/8c) – and in doing so helped out the CBS procedural with a bit of a last-minute casting pinch – she had been a bit MIA from the TV landscape since her last series regular role, on ABC’s ‘Once & Again.’ But that was by design.
“I hadn’t worked for a while because I wanted to be with my kids,” she shares. “But now that they’re a little bit older – 12 and 16 – I was beginning to feel antsy.”
Cue Melina Kanakaredes‘ unexpected departure from ‘CSI: NY’ as it geared up for its seventh season, and… voila. “Timing is everything,” Ward notes. “And the thing that’s attractive to me is that it is an ensemble show, so I wasn’t going to be carrying it on my shoulders. I could have a life.”
On-screen, she lives the life of Jo Danville, a newcomer to Det. Mac Taylor’s team of crack CSIs. Previously a G-woman based out of Quantico, “Something went down and she’s no longer an FBI agent,” Ward reveals. (We’ll let the details of that sordid “something” play out on the show, but let’s just say it involves Jo’s role in putting a suspected felon back on the streets. “She really took heat for it,” says her portrayer.)
Mac (played by Gary Sinise) knew Jo purely by reputation before her hire, it has been established, and how much more they come to learn about each other remains to be seen. Though ‘CSI: NY’ never heavily played up sparks ‘tween Mac and Stella, that fact could open the door for a different dynamic between him and the beautiful new woman in his (work) life.
Ward would be on board with such a scenario. A veteran of TV series such as the aforementioned ‘Once & Again’ as well as ‘Sisters,’ she knows full well what drums up drama. “You don’t have to consummate anything, but it’s the titillation and the undercurrent of sexual tension that makes it all really interesting,” she notes. “I would hope that they would write that.”
If not Mac, it could be that Jo’s ex-husband re-enters the picture at some point. Inviting Ward to “dream cast” that role, Fancast suggested that she call in a favor from her ‘Sisters’ scene partner, one George Clooney.
“George would be great,” she concurs with a big smile. “Let’s put that out there. George would be wonderful.”
What do you think, ‘CSI: NY’ faithful? Would you rather Mac hold out for the return of Aubrey Hunter (Madchen Amick) or Peyton Driscoll (Claire Forlani)? Or is one lab romance (Danny and Lindsay’s) more than enough?