Who better to direct a special, two-hour season finale of “CSI” than Quentin Tarantino (search)?
The man is an expert on blood — the movie kind — and he’s also a fan of "CSI," (search) which sounds logical for the director of such blood-soaked films as "Reservoir Dogs," (search) "Pulp Fiction" (search) and the two "Kill Bill" (search) movies.
When he finally arrived to direct “CSI,” he found he fit in like a rubber glove on a coroner’s hand.
“I’m a big fan of the show,” Tarantino said excitedly. “So, like, I know the backstory of all the characters and everything ... And I know these sets from watching the show and stuff, so I feel strangely comfortable even though I haven’t been here before.
Besides directing the episode that will conclude the fifth season of TV’s highest-rated prime-time show (Thursday at 8 p.m. EDT), Tarantino also wrote the story on which the screenplay is based.
The episode is called "Grave Danger," and it involves the disappearance of a member of the CSI team. When the investigators learn their teammate has been kidnapped and buried alive, they begin a race against time to save him (or her).
Though he’s best known for his distinctive films, Tarantino, 42, directed an episode of NBC’s "ER" in 1995 and an episode of ABC’s "Jimmy Kimmel Live" last year. As an actor, he has appeared on four episodes of ABC’s "Alias," hosted "Saturday Night Live" and even had small roles on three episodes of "The Golden Girls" way back in 1988 and 1990.
According to CBS, Tarantino had often told various producers and cast members of "CSI" —including series star William Petersen — that he was a fan of the show.
From those conversations came the idea of hiring Tarantino to direct an episode. But for most of the last five seasons, Tarantino’s schedule got in the way.
Last January, however, Tarantino happened to be spending a weekend in Las Vegas when the show’s cast and crew were in town filming a few scenes and the deal was done.
At two hours long, Tarantino thinks the "CSI" episode he directed is more like a movie than a typical TV show.
"Something I really like about this episode is it’s very story-oriented," he said. "It plays sort of, you know, not to be too grandiose, but it plays like a movie."