Interview: Emily Procter: CSI: Miami Star
by Scott Juba
Published: November 7, 2005
It wasn't long ago that Emily Procter worked as a local TV weathergirl in North Carolina. Since then, her television exposure has increased considerably. She currently stars in CSI: Miami, one of the nation's top-rated crime dramas. “Humans like mystery, and it’s fun to solve the puzzle,” she says of the show’s acclaim.
Emily Procter on CSI: Miami
. Copyright CBS.
Procter credits much of CSI: Miami’s success to the great camaraderie the cast and crew share. “I’m amazed by our crew,” she says. “I look at that show, and I just think, I cannot believe they make this show look like this. If you saw the collection of hooligans, you would be so impressed with them. [Laughs]. They are, without a doubt, hilarious. It is a cast of characters. We have a great time. I laugh an extraordinary amount. But we went through a lot of years not laughing to try to figure out how to do it. I am amazed by the people that I work with – by their work ethic and their amount of character and their ability to stay consistently good with one another, even under that amount of pressure.”
“I almost wish we had a behind the scenes episode, although I guess people would not be that interested in it,” she says with a laugh. “Whenever people on the street watch us film the show, they walk away and say, ‘We never had any idea that’s what your actual relationships are.’ They are so polar-opposite of what viewers see. The new guy, Jon Togo, he and I spend a lot of time off-screen either ballroom dancing or punching each other. [Laughs]. And David [Caruso] is so kind and sweet in a sensitive way, and I don’t think that’s what people would expect of him, either.”
Despite the great rapport she shares with her co-workers and CSI: Miami’s consistently high ratings, Procter never takes her accomplishments for granted. “I’m just sort of always thinking that [acting] isn’t going to work out,” she says. “I think if you ever get too comfortable at anything [it’s dangerous]. You know, I wouldn’t want to be flying with a pilot who’s like, ‘Hey, I got it down.’ [Laughs]. But then there’s a part of me that’s like, oh my gosh, can you just quit making back up plans?”
While Procter enjoys her celebrity status, she says Hollywood life is much different than she imagined it would be. “In all honesty, I think I sort of thought it was going to be really fancy, and that I was going to spend a lot of time lounging about,” she remarks lightheartedly. “That hasn’t really happened. The only thing that’s happened is that when I’m out sometimes, people will be like, ‘Hey, I know you.’ Then I feel really bad, because I think maybe I should have on a fancier outfit.”
Procter finds that although fans recognize her on the street, they confuse her real life personality with the personality of her on-screen character. “People have been really nice to me,” she says. “Although, the other day I was getting some breakfast and this guy working behind the counter was like, ‘Hey, you’re on CSI. My mom and I watch that show all the time. We love it.’ And I was like, ‘Hey man, thanks.’ And he’s like, ‘Oh, you’re so nice in person.’ So, for like an hour I was thinking, “Am I a brat [on the show]? [Laughs].”
A brat? Far from it. Humble and down to earth, Procter’s real life personality is as genuine as her on-screen talent.