This just goes to show how long its been since I've watched the original "CSI".  I had no idea that Marg Helgenberger is leaving the series after 12 years as Catherine Willows.  Instead of leaving at the end of the season, Helgenberger will bow out shortly after the return from the Christmas hiatus.  Taking over her spot on the CSI team will be Elisabeth Shue.

Unfortunately, a lot of younger fans are probably wondering who that is.  Shue was a hot commodity in the 80s with movies like "The Karate Kid" and "Adventures In Babysitting".  In the 90s, Shue appeared along side Nic Cage for his Oscar winning role in "Leaving Las Vegas".  Since then, Shue has stayed active, but hasn't reached the level of acclaim and popularity she did in the 80s.  Shue will debut on the Feb. 15th episode as the new member of the team, having just completed anger management therapy.  Early intentions for her character have her butting heads with Ted Danson's character, D.B. Russell, who fired her when they both worked in Seattle.

Commenting on the parting of a major cast member after 12 years, Executive Producer Carol Mendelsohn said,

"While it's difficult to say goodbye to a beloved character like Catherine Willows, it's exciting to start a journey with a new CSI, especially when that character is played by Elisabeth Shue,"

via Eonline.com