The popular CSI: The Experience interactive exhibit will open this summer at MGM Grand Hotel & Casino on the Las Vegas Strip – the setting of the original CSI television series – for the first time.
“The touring version of CSI: The Experience has been incredibly popular throughout the U.S. and the world,” said Liz Kalodner, Executive Vice President and General Manager of CBS Consumer Products. “We’re excited to expand its reach by creating a more permanent home for the exhibit in the place where you could say the television series all began – Las Vegas.”
EMS Exhibits, Inc., under a license from CBS Consumer Products, will produce the attraction at MGM Grand. Originally developed by the Fort Worth Museum of Science and History with a grant from The National Science Foundation (NSF) for a tour of U.S. science museums, CSI: The Experience exhibit in Las Vegas, Nevada gives guests the opportunity to play the role of a crime scene investigator, learning scientific principles and real investigative techniques as they try to solve one of three crime scene mysteries. Two state-of-the-art crime labs will help guests piece together the evidence. With input from investigators from the television show, guests will formulate a hypothesis, validate their findings based on scientific evidence and try to crack the case.
From DNA and fingerprint analysis to forensic anthropology and toxicology, visitors will be captivated by hands-on science in a multi-media environment with dazzling special effects — direct from the CSI television series. A video introduction by cast members from the TV show will welcome guests, lead them through the experience, and then evaluate their crime-solving savvy as they exit.
“MGM Grand is proud to welcome CSI: The Experience to our family of world-class brands,” said John Shigley, MGM Grand Executive Vice President of Operations. “CSI: The Experience joins our unsurpassed entertainment offerings, including KÀ by Cirque du Soleil and MGM Grand’s Crazy Horse Paris, providing our guests with a truly ‘Maximum Vegas’ experience.”
“We are thrilled to bring CSI: The Experience to Las Vegas,” said Christoph Rahofer, President and CEO of EMS Exhibits, Inc. “As the city that inspired the world’s most successful television series, it is the perfect backdrop to this dynamic interactive experience. Located in the heart of the entertainment capital, we have an ideal location at MGM Grand.”
The Crime Scenes
The “new recruits” will enter one of three different crime scenes where they will identify evidence and record findings on a special investigation card.The The crime scenes vary in intensity, with the mildest being the presentation of skeletal remains discovered in a remote desert.
In “A House Collided” a car has run through the living room window of a house in a quiet suburb. In the driver’s seat is a man with his seatbelt on; he is slumped over. The windshield is shattered and the car door is shut. In the living room, there are muddy shoeprints, drops of blood and a stain near a sofa. A pizza box is open with pepperoni pizza spilled on the floor. A beer bottle is by the car door, and a handprint of blood (or is it pizza sauce?) is found on the car hood.
In “Who Got Served?” a young woman has been found dead in an alley behind an old Las Vegas motel. She is sprawled beneath a dumpster overflowing with trash and is wearing a waitress outfit with a nametag that reads “Penny.” There is a tire tread across her abdomen, and tossed nearby is a photo of her which has been ripped in half. No other injuries are visible. Amongst the trash are a handbag and a cell phone.
In “No Bones About It!” a hiker has stumbled across what looks like a human skull sticking out of the ground. It is partially buried by silt and debris. Other bones are scattered underneath the dirt. The skull has a visible hole in it; and among the remains there are still tattered remnants of a coat and what appears to be a backpack.
Beginning the Investigation
After exiting the crime scenes, guests will refer to a large wall of crime scene photos and clues they may have missed. They will then analyze evidence in two highly interactive lab areas, each featuring multiple stations that allow for various evidence testing.
Guests who are investigating “A House Collided” will compare fingerprints of the victim to the evidence, examine blood spatter patterns, observe the shoes of the victim and tracks found in the room, compare fibers on the victim’s clothes with fibers in the room, analyze the victim’s blood-alcohol level, compare DNA of the victim with evidence and eventually discover the cause of death.
Sleuths working on “No Bones About It!” will analyze the bullet from the found skull, analyze hairs found with the body, examine a seed found in a pocket of the jacket, study a DNA sample from a tooth, test the DNA of an animal’s hair, examine a femur bone to establish the height of the victim, compare dental records to the victim and discover the cause of death.
For “Who Got Served?” the investigation will include reviewing evidence within a cell phone, examining the contents of the handbag, inspecting the purse and headshot for fingerprints, establishing the time of death, reviewing DNA samples, testing powder from the handbag at the scene, and discovering the cause of death.
Cracking the Case
At the end of CSI: The Experience, guests will present their findings in a re-creation of the office of Gil Grissom – the enigmatic CSI head investigator. They will answer a series of multiple choice questions, based on their scientific findings, on touch screens located in this area. A case summary is then generated for guests to match their results to those of expert crime scene investigators. A personalized CSI Diploma completes the experience. CSI: The Experience also continues to tour around the United States and Europe. It had its European debut last November in Vienna and will open this summer in Budapest (Hungary) Dublin (Ireland).