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How Brian Tee's Time On Chicago Med Prepared Him To Become A Director

It might have been upsetting to see Brian Tee step down from the role of Dr. Ethan Choi on "Chicago Med," but it was far from the end of his relationship with the beloved series. Having starred as the Navy veteran since the show's beginnings in 2015, Tee made his final appearance on Season 8, Episode 9 "This Could Be the Start of Something New." But it wouldn't take long for him to jump back into the world of "Chicago Med," now on the other side of the camera. 

Season 8, Episode 17 "Know When to Hold and When to Fold" might have been Tee's first time directing, but his urge to exercise the creative muscle existed long before. Speaking with Variety, Tee explains, "In Season 2, I started shadowing directors ... I think everyone has known that I've been wanting to do this. It wasn't just something new, out of the blue. It's been something I've been working toward." 

Despite some minor initial hesitation, it was obvious that Tee had what it took to helm an episode and he more than enjoyed the experience. "I enjoy the people. At the end of the day, that's what really matters," he tells Variety. "To be able to come back and play with them again would just be a joy to do. The door will always be open." Tee's daring step into this creative realm yielded rewarding results, but he's not the only "One Chicago" cast member to make the switch. 

Jesse Lee Soffer was nervous for people to see his episode

One week before Brian Tee's "Chicago Med" episode aired, another "One Chicago" cast alum got to show off his directorial chops. Jesse Lee Soffer, who portrayed Jay Halstead for 10 seasons of "Chicago P.D.," would take on directing Episode 16 of Season 10, "Deadlocked." 

Lee Soffer aimed to ensure that his first time directing would go as smoothly as possible, noting to Us Weekly that directing and acting have a major difference. "Acting, you're just prepping your lines and the scenes that you're gonna be in. You're looking over the whole script to figure out the tone and what the story's about and everything. ... And it's the same with directing, but you've been doing it for a couple weeks longer because you were prepping the episode." Much like Tee, Lee Soffer shadowed other directors, but he also received additional help from camera operator Victor Macias during the shoot.

Even after all his prep and assistance, however, Lee Soffer was still not fully confident that audiences would resonate with his episode, telling Us Weekly, "I'm nervous to see what people think. I like it. I had a lot of fun doing it ... So hopefully everybody else feels the same way." Regardless, he is grateful for the opportunity and hopes to direct more in the future.