Laurence Fishburne Opts for “Red Pill,” Leaves CSI

Laurence Fishburne has decided not to renew his contract for CSI: Crime Scene Investigation, the long-running hit CBS program.

Fishburne’s contract expired after the season 11 finale in May. Lawrence, the Matrix alum who joined CSI in 2008 to replace William Petersen, indicated that he wanted to return for at least another year as Dr. Ray Langston.

“I’m having a great time,” said ‘Fish’, while acknowledging the challenge he faced in replacing Petersen’s Grissom. “I was cognizant of the fact that Grissom was a much-beloved character. I made it my business to sit down and watch almost every episode of CSI from season 1 until I came on. It was about understanding the world and becoming as immersed in the show as possible. I love it.”

Despite his apparent enthusiasm for the series, Fishburne’s move was a shocker to few.

“Nobody expected him to be on the show for 7 years,” an insider told Deadline.com. “It’s Laurence Fishburne.”

CSI is expected to bring on a replacement for the Oscar-nominated actor but so far there is only speculation as to who the new lead investigator might be.

What are your thoughts on Dr. Raymond’s departure? Could Grissom make a surprise return to the show?

via EW