Behind the scenes of NCIS: New Orleans

NEW ORLEANS, La. (KLFY) – It’s one of the hottest shows on television and seen right here on KLFY. NCIS: New Orleans is filmed in The Big Easy and on location throughout South Louisiana. KLFY was invited to come down to capture an exclusive, behind-the-scenes look at the show for News 10 viewers.

We were allowed to give viewers a peak behind the veil of KLFY’s hit show NCIS: New Orleans. CBS and the crew invited the KLFY team to go behind the scenes as they shot the May 5 episode, “How Much Pain Can You Take”. We were given total access to the set and to the actors.

Veteran actor Scott Bakula plays NCIS Supervisory Special Agent Dwayne Pride. The series is so successful, CBS quickly renewed the show. I asked Bakula about the early renewal.

“It’s something I never experienced before getting picked up as early as we did in the season,” Bakula said.

Rob Kerkovich, who plays the role of forensic scientist Sebastian Lund, said, “Us getting renewed as early as we did felt like a nice vote of confidence from CBS and the network.”

Zoe McLellan, who plays NCIS Special Agent Meredith Brody, said it’s nice to know the cast and crew have jobs to come back to. “A little shocking and also a relief because I feel like we get to just keep working hard and know that there’s a hiatus, that we get a little break before the next season,” she said.

The permanent sets are located on a soundstage in a business park. They include the interior of the NCIS: New Orleans office where the agents work, Pride’s kitchen, and the courtyard area. Another part of the building has sets for the coroner’s office and forensic lab.

Inside Sebastian’s forensic lab, it looks like natural sunlight comes into the room. But it’s not real. When you walk out of the room and off that particular set, you can see that the light is artificial. Carefully positioned bright lights in the rafters on the other side of the lab set give viewers the illusion of sunlight.

The show also shoots many scenes on location in the greater New Orleans area and Southern Louisiana. So what about Acadiana and Lafayette? I asked the stars about visiting, and maybe even shooting, in the Hub City.

“We haven’t been to Lafayette yet. I’d like to get up there. I hear about it all the time,” Bakula said. “We’ve been Slidell way and on the other side of the lake, North Shore, but we haven’t been too much further than like an hour away.”

The other cast members said they’d like to visit the area in their free time.

“My wife and I have been meaning to explore the surrounding areas around New Orleans but we just haven’t done it yet,” Kerkovich said. “I want to go up to Lafayette. I want to go down to Baton Rouge.”

Steven Weber, who has a recurring role as city councilman Douglas Hamilton said, “”No I have not been to Lafayette? Would you like me to come out there?”

“Absolutely,” I answered.

“Make me an offer?”

“Come on down,” I said.

“Okay, I’m there,” Weber said.

“Sounds good,” I replied

“See how easy it was?” Weber exclaimed.

“We’ll give you a station tour and everything,” I promised. “

“Sure, I’ll do the weather. Can I do the weather?”

“Absolutely,” I said.

“Muggy. I’ll just say it’s muggy,” Weber joked.

CCH Pounder, who plays Dr. Loretta Wade, has been to Lafayette. She said she attended a festival here last year. “I saw Tamil players from India, or Tamil players, and some Zydeco music. Cajun music. That was really nice and I was by myself and I just roamed through. I had a great time.”

Cast and crew members often work 12 to 14 hour days. It leaves little free time but many have found time to explore New Orleans. Some cast members even relocated their families to the Crescent City – a city that’s just as much a central character on the show – as any of the cast members.

NCIS: New Orleans is consistently ranked in the top ten shows and averages more than 18 million viewers per episode. CBS said it’s the top new freshman drama since Desperate Housewives in 2004 and 2005.

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