CSI: Crime Scene Investigation had a sizable run on CBS. The police procedural ran for 15 seasons from 2000 to 2015, and as is often the case with any live-action TV show that runs this long, cast members came and went. The people who were there from the beginning dropped out a few years later, while other actors came in to take their place.
It was a mishmash of cast, and everyone will have their favorites. But it’s hard not to have a soft spot for a character who was there from the beginning and left prematurely: Warrick Brown, played by Gary Dourdan.
Warrick Brown was a recovering game addict who had the opportunity to change his life by becoming an audio and video analyst for the team. He helped them on numerous occasions until he faced false charges of murder and was finally acquitted. However, he was not meant to last on the show.
During the season 8 finale, Warrick was shot in his car and, by the season 9 premiere, it was revealed that he died in the arms of Gil Grissom (William Petersen). It was a tragic end for such a beloved character, but the real reason behind Dourdan’s departure seems to come down to a story as old as time: contract negotiations.
The transition from season 8 to season 9 for “CSI” was a big one. Not only was Gary Dourdan’s character killed off, but Jorja Fox also left during that time period. However, her character was kept alive, allowing her to continue making guest appearances for the rest of the show, as well as appearing in the current spin-off series “CSI: Vegas.” Dourdan was not so lucky, and although there is not much information on why the negotiations failed.
CBS reportedly wasted no time trying to find a replacement. Producers quickly searched for actors for the role of Ray Santoro, which is notable because a character by that name never ended up on the series. Gary Dourdan may have permanently left the “CSI” franchise, but he hasn’t fared too badly in the years since he left the show. He has appeared in various movies and TV shows over the years without much success.