NCIS Los Angeles Scoop By Tonight’s Ep Director Chris O’Donnell

What happens when one of your own is thrown in jail on irrefutable murder charges?

Well, if we’re talking the world of NCIS Los Angeles, you make a personal episode even more personal by putting one of your lead actors – in this case, star Chris O’Donnell – behind the camera to direct as well as act in the episode.

Tonight will not mark Chris O’Donnell’s first time behind the camera.

But NCIS Los Angeles Season 6 Episode 6 won’t be your typical episode, so it’s fitting that the actor will be taking the reins as director.

What will the team do with Sam in jail when every rock they turn over in their investigation shows that he may actually be guilty?

O’Donnell jumped on the phone with TV Fanatic last week to talk about this particular episode and whether he keeps his directing eye separate from his acting eye… or whether one impacts the other more directly.

TV Fanatic: This sounds like a good episode to direct. Did you get to choose or did it just fall in that way?

Chris O’Donnell: No, I didn’t have a say in which one I was going to direct but it’s always exciting when you get your script and it’s a good one. The subject matter itself, with Sam being arrested and accused of murder, it’s a situation where all the evidence – the DNA, the crime scene – the evidence all points to him. It becomes a very personal episode for the team trying to prove our partner’s innocence

TVF: As the director of the episode, how do you approach your part in the show as an actor?

COD: For me, it’s such a nice break. We crank out day after day after day of acting and being on the set but to be able to get in there to work on the pre-production and to work with a whole other part of our crew that we don’t see on a day to day basis and scout locations and casting, tweak the script and give notes on it, that’s exciting for me.

All that said, it’s not that much different because I like to be in the middle of things as much as possible anyway so I’m in the thick of what we’re doing and I’ve always had a good relationship with my fellow actors and feel very comfortable talk to them and try to focus in on different ways of getting the best performances.

Read the whole interview on