The project’s filmmakers have reportedly scouted out film locations in the United Arab Emirates’ capital, Abu Dhabi, a city that is dear to the members of the Guggenheim Motorcycle Club because Krens is currently overseeing the development of the Gehry-designed Guggenheim Abu Dhabi Museum, slated to open in 2011. The club has sojourned to the Middle East before; in 2007, the group rode along the border of Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates, braving the desolate desert region known as the Empty Quarter. “On one side, you see red hills of sand; on the other side, you see golden hills of sand,” Fishburne recalls. “There were oceans of sand everywhere. It was amazing.” There has been talk amongst members of making another outing to Abu Dhabi, and possibly soon, just as Fishburne’s second season of CSI is getting underway.
As last season’s CSI finale faded to black in May, Dr. Langston used deadly force for the first time, shooting a suspect in self-¬defense. Fishburne offers no clues as to what’s in store for Dr. Langston this year -- only that he is in good hands. “The show has been on for nine years; there is no clever trick I can pull out as an actor that will make it any better, because it is already at such a high level,” he says. “So my responsibility is to be a presence that one, doesn’t know anything; two, is very curious and wants to learn; and three, is willing to do whatever it takes to learn.
“I don’t get to go, ‘Hey, I’m the new sheriff in town. This is the way it’s going to be.’ That would be boring. They would be like, ‘Who does he think he is? He’s no Gil Grissom.’ The cool thing about Langston is that he knows he’s not Gil Grissom. He knows he doesn’t know anything. He’s dancing as fast as he can, trying to keep up.”
In contrast, Fishburne himself is enjoying a slightly slower pace for the time being. Unlike movie work, which keeps him on the road for months at a time, the CSI shooting schedule lets him be home every night. “This was the perfect opportunity for me to create a greater balance between my home life and work life,” he says. “I get to see my daughter, [two-year-old Delilah], in the morning and hear her first words and watch her take her first steps and marvel at discoveries she makes every day. And grow closer with my wife and my older children from my first marriage. And grow closer to myself.”
And hopefully, he’ll get to spend more time on his motorcycle. He’s thinking of trading in his bike for something new; after 10 years on the same one, it’s time to change things up. He still tries to get out at least twice a week so that he doesn’t get rusty. But ever since the “Hog Heaven” episode aired in May, his rides around town haven’t been quite as pleasantly anonymous -- he’s being recognized far more often. “[That anonymity] doesn’t work anymore,” he says, with a hint of regret. But it only makes him appreciate his rides around the world with the Guggenheim Motorcycle Club that much more.
“Wherever President Krens says we’re going, I’ll go,” he says. “I have to respect the president.”