CSI Exclusive: Marg Helgenberger Set to Return for Landmark 300th Episode

Marg Helgenberger Back On CSI CSI is getting ready to celebrate a major milestone, with a little help from former leading lady Marg Helgenberger.

TVLine has learned exclusively that the fan fave — who departed the series midway through Season 12 — will reprise her role as Catherine Willows in the CBS procedural’s landmark 300th episode.

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“We were just really excited to have Marg come back because, obviously, she’s such an important part of the history of CSI,” executive producer Don McGill shares. “And she was super excited. It was kismet!”

The milestone hour, airing later this fall, centers on a fictional cold case, one that “takes our characters back to the beginning,” McGill reveals. “They have to investigate a murder with the same M.O. and the same suspect from 14 years ago.”

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Helgenberger’s return comes partly via a series of recreated flashbacks, or “faux-backs,” as McGill calls them. Explains the EP: “We will flash back 14 years to seminal moments that show Catherine, Nick (George Eads), Sara (Jorja Fox), Greg (Eric Szmanda) and Ecklie (Marc Vann) as they were, [and how that] informed the evolution of the characters now. It’s going to be a really fun episode, very emotional, that honors 14 years of CSI.”

UPDATE: Not long after TVLine broke the news, Helgenberger celebrated by tweeting a “reunion” photo:

The actress next co-stars opposite Lost‘s Josh Holloway in CBS’ midseason drama Intelligence.

CSI launches its 14th season Wednesday, Sept. 25 at 10/9c.

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  1. Paige says:

    Now, bring back Grissom & Catherine for the season (SERIES) finale and call it quits :)

  2. paigegail says:

    Yay! Now bring back Grissom & Catherine for the season (SERIES) finale and call it day :)

  3. F.M. says:

    Nice! :)
    Wish William Petersen would return too tho, to have the “old gang” back together, well, not the complete gang because Warrick is dead. : (

  4. robinepowell says:

    No Warrick or Grissom?

    • Warrick is not coming back because he got killed off bridging the gap between Seasons 8 and 9 in case you didn’t know it by now.

      • d4h8a15r16m23a42 says:

        Yes but the scenes are set 14 years ago so Warrick and Grissom should technically be there.

        • Linda says:

          Well they could put their hard feelings behind them and do it for the fans.

          • drhenning says:

            You know that Petersen still is an Exec Producer so gets his money,, he can’t have that many bad feelings…!!

            But it’s nice to to get Marg back at least for one episode…

            Not sure how they could end this show.. I know the ended L&O, Mother Ship, with just an episode.. L&O CI ended with them going out on another case though we found out this past season on SVU when Eames showed up that Goren appears to have left the force and moved away.. When the time does come to end, probably just stop.. The thing is that once they got rid of the mistake that was Langston (Fishburne) and brought in Danson to star along with Shue, it rejuvenated the show…

            On the flashback show, they should show Brody as a teenager!!!

      • hermanmartin says:

        It is supposed be flashbacks, that means even characters who have been killed can be on the show, as a “flashback” duh Where is Grissom he started it 14 years ago.

  5. TVFan says:

    What about Gil?

  6. Alisa Neely says:

    grissom should also be part of the 300th…..that’s NOT right…..wonder how that’s going to work with her coming back….she’s working for the FBI.

  7. CactusRose says:

    That’s what I thought!

  8. Linda says:

    Both characters, Willows and Grissom were one of the biggest reasons that I watched CSI. It wasn’t just Willows. In fact all the characters make that show great. But it will be nice to see her again.

  9. Good to see Catherine Willows back for a very special milestone episode of CSI. Until then, Marg Helgenberger is moving on to do Intelligence which debuts February 24th the night after the Winter Olympics.

  10. GuestHere says:

    If Grissom isn’t there—why the flashbacks? Everything is seen with Grissom’s eyes, especially for 9 seasons. And where is Grissom? Avoiding a mention of him will make it all too weird. Why can’t this show embrace its history instead of avoiding the man who made it famous?
    I hope they don’t try to ‘make-up’ these actors to look younger but use actual scenes from early seasons.
    And what about Warrick?
    This could be a good episode, but then I remember the awful 200th episode. Cringe-worthy!

    • Jillian says:

      This. It’s going to be so weird watching flashbacks without Grissom because he was the main character for years. I hope they at least mention him.

  11. sharona says:

    – Gary Dourdan (Warrick) will never come back : he was fired because personal issues
    – William Petersen (Grissom) : He may not return as well, he critisized the show recently. He said he does not miss the show at all…

    Glad Marg is returning for one episode ! I’m waiting for this one ! :)

    • JustaGuest says:

      You do realize he is still executive producer for the show right? He is still around it quite often.

    • hermanmartin says:

      before you think remember William Peterson is one of the producers of the show. He helps run it. He can put himself in “if” he wants. It would not be an accurate show if he is not on it. He ran the cases.

  12. Vcoolwater says:

    I am confused. Is Catherine only appearing in the “flashbacks”? I use to be big fan of the show back in the day. I have seen 1 or 2 episodes from last season. It just isn’t the same. I find writing and the cases to be boring.

    Even though I don’t mind Elisabeth Shue, I can’t stand Finn. Everytime she is on, I have urge to put the mute button on.

  13. Erin says:

    I think if Petersen is coming back they won’t spoil it… Petersen would want to keep it on the down low… I mean the fandom right now ;)

    • oldrockchick says:

      absolutely, if he were to return, it would be like Clooney’s appearance on ER

    • Austin says:

      That would be stupid. Why would you keep it a secret? The whole idea of having special guest appearances is to attract more viewers to the show. If they announced William Peterson was returning I guarantee the viewing audience would double. If nobody knows he’s going to be on then they won’t tune in.

      • Melissa says:

        Exactly! If Peterson were coming on the show not only would they NOT keep it a secret they would post it on every single entertainment news site available, put up billboards, and hire a sky writer. The idea that they would not advertise it is absurd.

      • Erin says:

        While I see why you would say this (and why I’m sure this is why the announcement for Marg was released) think of the press releases on The Office and Michael Scott.

  14. cali says:

    300 episodes…WOW…I always liked the show…but now that Ted Danson is on… it has been a more interesting show… Not that I didn’t like the early years…

  15. Bouncy Castle, UK says:

    I’d be interested to see how they’re going to handle the fact that Marg has had a hell of a lot of surgery done on her face, when they do a 14 year flashback!!