UPDATE: He’s coming in as a new team leader on the graveyard shift of the original CSI, filling one of the voids left by Laurence Fishburne, who himself took over from William Petersen. The talks with Ted Danson only started about two weeks ago and closed late today, so this was truly fast casting. The show moves to a new night — from Thursdays to Wednesdays — in the hopes of growing that 10 PM time slot and invigorating ratings. Fishburne never clicked with viewers, and Danson seems like sensible casting. A proven TV star coming into an aging hit is quite a coup. Danson most recently had a gig with FX’s Damages and has been a regular on HBO’s Bored To Death,which will continue.

UPDATE: CBS press release follows:

LOS ANGELES – July 12, 2011 — Multiple Emmy Award winner Ted Danson will join the cast of CSI: CRIME SCENE INVESTIGATION, in a series regular role, on the CBS Television Network.  His character will debut in the season premiere on Wednesday, September 21 (10:00-11:00 PM,ET/PT). Danson will play the new CSI Supervisor for the grave shift after heading the crime lab in Portland. He comes to the team as they are still grappling with the professional and personal fallout from last season’s take-down of serial killer, Nate Haskell. “You can create a new character on the page, but until the perfect actor comes along and breathes life into it, it’s just words,” said Executive Producer Carol Mendelsohn. “We’re very excited Ted Danson came along.”

“From the moment we all started talking about therole, it was clear he couldn’t be more perfect,” said Executive Producer Don McGill.  “Intelligence, wit, warmth, depth of characterand emotion, he brings it all. And now he’ll have to bring latex gloves, too.”

Ted Danson will remain a series regular on the critically acclaimed HBO series,“Bored to Death.” He has also recently garnered accolades for his roles on “Damages” and “Curb Your Enthusiasm.” Ted Danson will next be seen starring opposite Drew Barrymore and John Krasinsky in “Everybody Loves Whales” to be released in January 2012.

Now  entering its 12th season, CSI: CRIME SCENE INVESTIGATION is the most-watchedtelevision show in the world.  CSI is produced by CBS Television Studiosin association with Jerry Bruckheimer Television. The executive producers are Jerry Bruckheimer, Carol Mendelsohn, Anthony Zuiker, Ann Donahue, Don McGill, Jonathan Littman and Louis Milito.