Eads revived on ‘CSI’

Thesp returns to skein without a raise

“CSI” thesp George Eads has his job back, capping a week of high drama surrounding TV’s most-watched drama.

Eads was rehired Friday, barely a week after he was dumped for allegedly failing to honor his contract and a day after colleague Jorja Fox was let back onto the show by CBS execs.

Like Fox, Eads will return to “CSI” without a raise. He’ll pull down the same coin he had been making before the salary scuffle — roughly $100,000 per seg.

“CSI” exec producer Jerry Bruckheimer and showrunner Carol Mendelsohn issued a joint statement Friday expressing their happiness at the return of Fox and Eads. “Jorja and George have been an important part of ‘CSI’s’ past success,” the producers said.

Through various back channels, both Fox and Eads had maintained they weren’t trying to pull a sickout. Eads even offered up a public apology of sorts last week.

“I overslept,” Eads said during a news conference last week to promote his upcoming TNT telepic “Evel Knievel.” Thesp insisted his tardiness was not “because I was holding out for more money.”

Fox’s reps have maintained the actress signed a letter promising not to miss work while negotiating for a raise — but the letter was mailed, not faxed, resulting in the Eye’s decision to fire Fox. No word on whether CBS ever got the letter.

CBS fired Eads and Fox about 10 days ago and shut down production of the show for a week while beginning the process of recasting (Daily Variety, July 16). Viacom co-prexy/co-chief operating officer Leslie Moonves said the Eye wouldn’t be held hostage by thesp salary demands, flatly declaring, “A deal’s a deal.”

CBS does seem open to giving raises to actors, even those with deals in place.

“CSI” regular Eric Szmanda — repped by Untitled and attorney Michael Gendler — last weekly quietly snagged a new deal with a healthy raise (Daily Variety, July 22). Series star Marg Helgenberger is actively seeking more coin as well.

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