Hip-hop artist and actor Shad Moss, aka Bow Wow, will co-star opposite Patricia Arquette and James Van Der Beek in CBS‘ midseason series CSI: Cyber. Inspired by the work of real-life cyberpsychologist Mary Aiken, the CSI spinoff centers on Special Agent Avery Ryan (Arquette), who heads the Cyber Crime Division of the FBI, a unit at the forefront of solving illegal activities that start in the mind, live online, and play out in the real world. Moss will play Brody “Baby Face” Nelson, a top hacker ordered by a judge to work with Ryan “on loan” to assist with a cyber case or go to prison. Nineteen going on 20, Nelson is a savant with cyber intrusions. Growing up without any parental guidance, he joined “hacktivist” groups for his extended family. His dilemma will be working for the feds while trying to keep his fingertips out of the Deep Web, where he was groomed to be one of the most prolific hackers in the world. “Bow Wow is a gifted young actor who will have the responsibility, through his character, to set an example for young people who watch the show to ‘do what’s right’ even when you know ‘nothing but wrong,’” said CSI franchise creator Anthony E. Zuiker, who co-created CSI: Cyber with CSI veterans Ann Donahue and Carol Mendelsohn. “It will be a redemption story and a cautionary tale all wrapped into one. The role of Nelson required someone with deep acting chops and off the charts smarts. Shad Moss is a unique talent that possesses both.” Zuiker, Mendelsohn and Donague executive produce with Jerry Bruckheimer and Jonathan Littman.
CBS has had success bringing rapper-actors into spinoffs of its top crime procedural franchises — CBS‘ NCIS: LA is toplined by LL Cool J. Currently, Moss, repped by Resolution and BW Management, hosts the BET show 106 & Park.