In an era of short television attention spans, CBS’ NCIS franchise enjoys remarkable success.
The flagship series has been a Nielsen Top 10 staple for more than half of its 11-year run and NCIS: Los Angeles, its 5-year-old spinoff, fares well for the network, too. This information is not lost on CCH (that’s short for Carol Christine Hilaria) Pounder, who will play Jefferson Parrish coroner Dr. Loretta Wade in the newest NCIS outing, NCIS: New Orleans, which premieres tonight.
“I don’t want to be part of slowing that franchise down!” says Pounder of the series, which also stars Scott Bakula. “But I don’t want to sit on the success of the previous shows. I’m honored to take the title and try to do something a little different, a little more adventurous, all within the confines of network TV. Wish me luck!”
Here, Pounder investigates our “5 Questions.”
1. You’re at a magazine rack and can only pick three titles. Which ones do you choose?
Art in America, MACO Caribbean Living and National Geographic.
2. If your TV carried just three shows or networks, what would they be?
Divine Design, HGTV and The No. 1 Ladies’ Detective Agency on HBO.
3. Tell us about a time when you were starstruck.
Nelson Mandela! He came into the room and there was a hush — it was as if everyone held their breath. We sat down to eat a lavish lunch and he only took a small piece of fish and rice and a glass of water — power and humility all in one. An exquisite moment.
4. What are three things you have to have in your fridge or pantry?
Nuts. Gabon Brown’s soup — I challenge you to find better and it isn’t sold anywhere, it’s offered, lucky me! And Baskin-Robbins Jamoca Almond Fudge ice cream.
5. What sets NCIS: New Orleans apart from the other NCIS series?
New Orleans atmosphere, locations, heat, rain, mosquitoes, bugs, fighter jets, shrimpers, swamps, alligators, shotgun houses, water-marked buildings, po’boys, restaurants, bridges — and the mighty Mississippi!
NCIS: New Orleans airs Tuesday nights at 9/8CT on CBS.
CCH Pounder as Dr. Loretta Wade Photo: Skip Bolen/CBS ©2014 CBS Broadcasting, Inc. All Rights Reserved