One of the original cast members of CSI: Crime Scene Investigation will be taking a temporary leave, according to The Hollywood Reporter. George Eads, who has played forensic scientist Nick Stokes since CSI’s start in 2000, will be absent from the majority of the first half of the upcoming season.
CBS Studios went on to confirm Eads temporary departure, but made it unclear as to when he would actually be returning. “George Eads will not appear in several episodes during the first half of the season. We look forward to him returning to CSI very soon.”
The news of his leave of absence came after reports of him having creative differences with a writer, who was 8 months pregnant at the time. He was allegedly unhappy with the way his character’s story line was going and exchanged some harsh words with the writer. News of this confrontation reached show runner Carol Mendelsohn which led to a meeting and Eads on the verge of quitting.
Viewers will see Eads in the first three episodes for the 14th season, but he will be absent in the following episodes. According to THR, the fourth episode will showcase the return of Catherine (Marg Helgenberger) choosing Stokes for special training.
This isn’t the first time that Eads has been missing from the show. Back in 2004, there were short lived salary disputes with the studio. Now, it’s pretty apparent that he is quite unhappy with his character Stokes, but keep in mind he did sign on to continue being a series regular back in March when the show was renewed.
We’ll all just have to wait to see if Nick Stokes will return. At least we still have Sara Sidle (Jorja Fox), Greg Sanders (Eric Szmanda) and Captain Brass (Paul Guilfoyle) right?