“CSI” scribe Naren Shankar has been upped to exec producer of the top-rated crime drama, inking a new seven-figure, multi-year deal in the process.
Shankar has been with “CSI” the past two seasons, most recently as co-exec producer. Deal with CBS, Alliance Atlantis and Jerry Bruckheimer Television is expected to keep the scribe with the show through May 2007.
“CSI” exec producer-showrunner Carol Mendelsohn — already at work on the fifth season of the Thursday-night blockbuster — said Shankar fits in well with “all of us on the show, who are preoccupied with death and murder. And he brought his own warped sensibility with him to the show.”Shankar also adds something else to “CSI” not usually associated with drama scribes — a Ph.D. from Cornell U. in applied physics. Scribe started out his showbiz career as a WGA intern and, later, a science consultant on “Star Trek: The Next Generation.”
He spent three seasons on the revival of “The Outer Limits” and was an exec producer on the Sci Fi Channel’s “Farscape.”
Repped by the Rothman Brecher Agency, Shankar joins a “CSI” exec producer roster that includes Mendelsohn, Bruckheimer, Anthony Zuiker, Ann Donahue, Jonathan Littman, Danny Cannon, Cynthia Chvatal and series star William Petersen.