NCIS Scoop: Cote de Pablo to Exit This Fall, Producers Promise 'Appropriate Closure' for Ziva

Cote de Pablo Leaving NCIS Cote de Pablo is invoking Gibbs’ Rule No. 11 — “When the job is done, walk away” — and has decided to leave CBS’ NCIS.

The actress, whose contract expired at the end of Season 10, will appear at the start of Season 11 (premiering Sept. 24) to conclude Ziva’s story.

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“I’ve had eight great years with NCIS and Ziva David,” the actress shares. “I have huge respect and affection for Mark [Harmon], Gary [Glasberg], Michael [Weatherly], David [McCallum], Rocky [Carroll], Pauley [Perrette], Brian [Dietzen], Sean [Murray], all of the team and CBS. I look forward to finishing Ziva’s story.”

In a statement, CBS said, “We respect Cote’s decision, thank her for being an important part of the NCIS team, and for eight terrific years playing Ziva David. Cote and CBS share a great respect for the NCIS audience, and we look forward to working with her and the producers on appropriate closure in this chapter of Ziva’s story.”

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News of De Pablo’s departure comes at the proverbial 11th hour, since NCIS is due to resume production next week. Her future with the show has been conspicuously in question since the spring, when her character of Ziva was steered into a dangerous mission of vengeance, at one point winding up in a (seemingly) brutal car crash.

After emerging from that episode-ending cliffhanger surprisingly unscathed, by season’s end Ziva and others had resigned from NCIS — and then the season ended with a four-month time jump, the disenfranchised agents thus far unaccounted for.

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Show boss Gary Glasberg maintained back in April, when de Pablo stood as the only cast member unsigned for Season 11, “I’m confident that things will work out, and we’ll present the best finale that we can and go from there.”

Are you bummed that Ziva and de Pablo are outta there?

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1189 Comments
  1. L.A. Steele says:

    I am pretty upset about Cota leaving. The way the story is written it sounds like it is about Cota’s contract not being renewed. I do not like when the knock off the main characters and it is going to be a heart breaker when she leaves. It is a big mistake on the studio’s part.

  2. John says:

    Nooooooooo Ziva you can’t leave NCIS
    :,,,,,(

  3. Mary says:

    Very, very , very sad news

  4. Jeannette says:

    No real surprise here, but very disappointed. Honestly, I prefer Ziva and Tony as close friends and colleagues. Yes, they had chemistry but really they did not have all that much in common beyond their work together (Can you imagine them as a couple if one or both no longer worked at NCIS? Nope. I can’t.)

    Hopefully, they will have a creative resolve (and not a death).

    I feel for whoever they hire next as a female lead. It’s tough to join the top, long-running series and make headway and be liked–especially after Ziva exits!

    Meanwhile, for those who think a show can’t be interesting without shipping: Really? Sex and hookups and relationships DO exist in offices, etc, but honestly there are more interesting storylines beyond who will, or won’t, sleep with each other.

    It’s time for some truly creative casting. Cote was terrific in her role. So was Sasha. THe writers need to come up with an equally interesting female character. Good luck on that!

  5. casgirl3 says:

    I loved Ziva and I was really hoping that the writers were really gonna have the balls to make Tiva a reality this season. Argh! Now I’m sooo not excited about the return of NCIS…. totally bummed

  6. NoChance says:

    I’m glad Ziva is leaving because after she assaulted Tony I simply could not like or support the character.
    Now maybe we can get back to the show being a procedural with a sense of humor rather than an inappropriate “will they or won’t they” show.

  7. Bunster says:

    Too many actors leave shows thinking the grass is greener on the other side. Once they get there it turns brown.

    • Svenja says:

      I think this pretty much sums it up. I think this was the peek of Cote’s career. I doubt it will get better for her through this.

  8. Kate says:

    Let me join the legions of others saying this is case in point why it’s awful for network shows to drag plots out for so long. I only watch NCIS for Tony/Ziva and have invested YEARS in rooting for their relationship. I love CdP as an actress; she makes the show for me. I know I won’t be watching it once she leaves. I’m upset I spent so much time invested in these characters only to have it implode in the end. It’s such a waste of all the wonderful work the actors and writers have done over the years. I feel sick right now knowing that we will never see the Tiva relationship realized after spending so much time on it.

  9. NCIS Fan says:

    I thought with the new Woman moussed director who seems villainous would make for a new story arc or bring something fresh to the show/stories. Bring the crew back into what it use to be and solving crimes but still have good other arcs like Ari etc..

  10. Olivia says:

    Oh tears I love Cote de Pablo and I loved the character Ziva but after 8 years it is understandable she would want to move on to other projects. NCIS will not be the same but I will continue to watch, wishing Cote the best of luck in her future endeavors.

  11. Stacey says:

    I say pair them. And have her leave and they have a relationship off screen, she takes a new job opportunity. Maybe so they can have a relationship…This way they don’t have to worry about pairing Tony with the new girl to join the team. And if the show does end eventually, they can bring Ziva back if Cote wants to, and have payoff on screen in the finale. This sucks though. Very hard in year 10 for such a major change, even if they did it in year 3. Eight years is a long time.

  12. LizMG says:

    Dear CBS, haven’t you learned anything yet? Can’t believe you guys are willing to risk the #1 tv drama show…. And yes, you will loose many viewers after Cote leaves.

    I was one of the many that wondered after Sasha Alexander left if I would continue to watch, to my surprise the writers dis a terrific job bringing Ziva as a unexpected & different character, and came to love Ziva. However how many times can a show be so lucky???

    Hope CBS would reconsider saving a few pennies and pay her what she deserves.

    Please take a look at Criminal Minds after AJ Cook & Paget Brewster left!!! Result they had to bring them both back! And they had the best season yet!

    After Brewster leaving again … I try to watch bc of the rest of the cast but hate the new character Blake and don’t love the shiow as much.

    As for the show that was my fav for 13 years Law & Order SUV … After Melloni left, I don’t care if I miss it, try to record it and watch when there is nothing else on. Is this tve future for NCIS after Cote’s departure???? Maybe… Probably …

  13. Leroy says:

    I’m so sad!!!!! I don’t know if I’ll watch the show anymore. Loved her❤!!!!!!

  14. Cindy says:

    We are going to miss seeing Cote’s gorgeous face and amazing acting EVERY week. But she made the right decision. NCIS became a big joke. GG messed it up so much that fans from the beginning don’t recognize the show and the characters anymore. By dragging Tiva for so long he RUINED it. Now let’s see the ratings when she’s gone….
    One thing for sure, without Cote, CBS and NCIS won’t have anything to promote and no more playing with the Tiva fans to keep them around. I wonder how that show is gonna survive it’s 11th season with Ziva and Tiva…
    Anyway, I feel like thanking Cote for the amazing job she did. And she can count on us to follow her career, we will be there for her.
    And bye bye NCIS.

  15. Debbie says:

    I’ll take Heather Kincaid from Seattle from season seven.

  16. David says:

    Just Heard The News About Cote. As ALot Of You Have Stated, Thus Will Sorrel The End for NCIS. I’VE SAID That For Years If You Take Out Any Of The Leads The Entire Chemistry Will Change, For The Worse. From Gibbs To Abby, It Will Not Work and I For One AmTotally Bummed!

  17. lizzie says:

    So very, very disappointed. After all this time I’d be sorry to see any of the team go, but this probably means ending the Tony/Ziva story abruptly and ineptly, after all those years of teasing the story. I think introducing a new team member this late in the story will be very difficult. I doubt that I’ll hang around for it.

  18. Rach says:

    I am so shocked by this news…Ziva is one of my favorite characters and although I grew to accept that Tiva was going nowhere, I will miss her character and at least the flirting with Tony. Cote is a great actress and she especially showed that this past season, and I wish she wasn’t leaving. I think NCIS was the first show I ever really loved and followed, and it will not be the same without Cote. My only hope is that this promised “closure” makes fans happy and maybe she’ll be back for more episodes and the series finale (which, as much as I hate to say it, has to be sooner rather than later).

  19. Terry Delp says:

    NO I am not upset about Ziva leaving

  20. This is going to be the beginning of the end for NCIS even if Marvel’s Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. is going to have the advantage this upcoming season.

  21. mo says:

    Well I know one thing for sure…I won’t be watching NCIS anymore. Gary definitely did ruin this show…to me it has been going down for awhile. I love this statement : “Producers Promise ‘Appropriate Closure’ for Ziva”—biggest bunch of crap I have even seen or heard. The producers of this show never follow through on anything they “promise”. There is alot of closure that they are going to need to follow through on…so many unanswered questions. It is just plain ridiculousness.

    This show started getting good when Ziva’s character entered. I know that there are alot of people that would disagree with me but to each his own.

    I am honestly surprised it has made it to 11 seasons.

  22. Connie says:

    Noooooo!!! Tiva was a big reason i started watching. My first season was when she came on. I am really disappointed. Wish Cote the best though!

  23. reen says:

    Soooo sad that Cote de Pablo is leaving NCIS. I love the dimensions that she brings to that character. I have never been that big of a Tiva-relationship fan–I like the way they have always watched over each other. My favorite Tony relationship was with Jeanne Benoit (When he lied to her and told her that none of it was ever real, my heart broke for both of them). The Ziva David character is unique and an integral part of the team. It will be interesting to see how they replace her. I love this show, and they do a great job of bringing in strong characters to take the place of those that they kill off (although I am hoping that they don’t kill Ziva!!!). I still look forward to this season.

  24. l2u9 says:

    This is the worst news ever…. she simply can’t leave NCIS without Ziva won’t ever be the same. I’ll probably stop watching after she leaves… and I hate TIVA never happened. No one will ever be able to replace Ziva David, nor Cote de Pablo.

  25. Amy says:

    I love Ziva’s character, and I have always been team Tiva. The way I see it, don’t tease us and “not got there”. As far as NCIS without her, I’m not sure. Do all federal agents in real life stay forever single? Who are they going to find to replace her? I am a fan until the end, but they had better work hard to let Ziva’s story end well, and to win me and many others over with someone new. This is a risky way to go with the agents of shield knocking on their door.

  26. Leslie Shepard says:

    No,no,no! This is very disappointing. I haved loved the TIVA chemistry and was vested in what I hoped would be a happy ending for 2 characters who seemed destined to be together. Sadly this means no more NCIS for me. Only my husband is happy to know we will now spend Tuesday nights watching something else together.

  27. MissKatie221 says:

    Cote thank you for sharing your amazing talent with us. I will miss you. After Ziva’s final appearance I will no longer watch NCIS nor will I watch anything else on CBS.

  28. Lorie says:

    Wow, I’m stunned! I’ll miss her big time.

  29. Beth says:

    I have to admit I didn’t see thing coming. I am in shock

  30. Maria says:

    Judging by the amount of replies this article is getting in a very short amount of time, I’d say this will have a HUGE impact on ratings. And as a former Tiva shipper who got tired of getting jerked around, I will say I’m glad I found other shows out there *cough*Castle*cough* with the leads in a successful and fun relationship. Also I wish Cote the best of luck in whatever she pursues in her career.

    • Stacey says:

      Only a small portion of the audience is connected to the internet fandom and know the spoilers, and casting notices. Majority won’t know it until the episode airs. And if they like the show, they will return to see the fallout… It is risky, but the show is in year 11. If the show ends this year, it won’t be because she left. It’s because the rest of the cast has their contracts up at the end except for Harmon.

  31. Vannesa says:

    omg…going to miss Ziva & Tiva but I wish Cote all the best. Hopefully the show will continue. J.A.G. ended in it’s 10th season…and still miss it and the chemistry between David James Elliott & Catherine Bell.

  32. bf206 says:

    I think that’s a shark tank ahead!!

  33. JCK says:

    I’m not at all sorry or glad. Now, can they PLEASE bring in Tea Leoni as a love interest for Gibbs? Not as part of the team, though.

  34. Heather Hildebrand says:

    So much for TIVA…so sad, they were getting so much closer. I know it is not the show’s fault in any way, but as mentioned above, a good reason not to wait too long to explore relationships if that is the way it is headed…

  35. Mandy says:

    This is only okay if she shows up at the very end of the show to be with Tony. The job has always been between them, so if she goes to work someplace else, they can eventually get together. Just where does she go in the mean time…

  36. Lyn says:

    Always liked Ziva, but all the Tiva crap took a lot of fun out of this show. Good luck to Cote and let’s move on!

  37. ggny says:

    Every season is the exacted same thing just rehashed. There is no reason why they could bring in a whole new teams as long as they kept Mark Harmon around and not keep the show going. People are lemmings and will go with all the crap CBS shows put out. Just look at all of the CSI’s

  38. estefania says:

    I am so sad for this news, but I wish the best and I thank cote for sharing you talented, beauty and funny and sweet personality and great character in NCIS

  39. Kate says:

    I’m so sad Cote is leaving the show. It was a shock to read this headline. But Mark Harmon, Michael Weatherly, Sean Murray, Pauley Perrette and David McCullum will stabilize the show and help fans get used to the new member of the team. I hope we won’t see another “ship” fanbase start, because I think Tony and Tim both need love interests outside of the team. But while Ziva will be missed, I look forward to someone new shaking up the series and extending it’s life.

  40. Kelly says:

    I’m so, so devastated about this. I love Cote and I will miss Ziva. CBS really dropped the ball here. And the show waited too long and wasted awesome chemistry between Tony and Ziva. I love everyone on the show but I just don’t know if I have it in me to keep watching. Just really bummed.

  41. felinefriend says:

    I was going to give up on NCIS – now I might just have to stick around. I do wish Cote de Pablo the best but I am very glad they might be ending Tony-Ziva. I really think the show won’t be on much longer anway but I hope her exit gives the show a chance to get back to it’s roots.

  42. Kay says:

    Lately, Ziva was my favorite character, plus the show was getting quite repetitive (with Ziva’s storyline last season the only dramatic bright spot for me with her father’s death), so for me, it’s time to move on from the show as well. I look forward to seeing Cote on another show. NCIS, it’s time to unfreeze the NCIS characters from their “frozen-in-time season after season” personas. Also, “TIVA” was such a stale but usual CBS ploy. it’s good to see that brought to an end for once by the actors themselves. :)

  43. laura says:

    said it for years: ziva leaves im done. hello shield.

  44. erinsinclairwriter says:

    The actress doesn’t want to become bored with the character or typecast probably. I’ve never been one for male and female characters necessarily having to act on their sexual tension. They are modern men and women, just because you find someone attractive, DOES NOT mean you have to act on that attraction.They can be aware enough individuals to realize because of their personalities they would never make it as a couple. Men and women can have platonic relationships where they are best friends. Get so sick of writers making them always fall in love or at the very least act upon their sexual attraction as if they have no self-control whatsoever. In the long run, Tony and Ziva have too many emotional problems to ever be, in the long run, a good couple together. Their individual angst (especially Ziva’s) would tear them apart eventually.

    • L. Burke says:

      I agree with all your points about Tony and Ziva never making it long term. One reason I was never a shipper. They could be pretty toxic together. :)

      I cant help but wonder if Cote is looking at the possibility of starting a family myself. With her current work schedule it would probably be pretty hard.

      I’m wish her the best of luck.

      • erinsinclairwriter says:

        One never knows, plus from what I understand she has a fantastic singing voice (trained in opera), wonder if she’ll explore that as well? Either way, the best of luck to her. Acting is a tough business and as an actor you need to keep yourself as relevant and wide ranging as possible.

  45. felinefriend says:

    I wonder what Cote asked for in contract negotiations. She didn’t get what she wanted and decided to see what other options she might have. I really wish the show hadn’t placed so much emphasis on Tony & Ziva – and I wish I wasn’t so happy about this news – but I am.

  46. CC says:

    I’m really sad about this. I truly liked Ziva’s character and Cote de Pablo’s acting. Both will be greatly missed. Makes me wonder how in the world they would give closure to her exit. Still will continue watching, but it really wouldn’t be the same without Ziva.

  47. Kelly says:

    If she’s going to go, they better kill her off. There’s no other way that its fair to the characters within NCIS. I mean, in fan fiction terms, this is the ultimate Tony whump!

    • erinsinclairwriter says:

      Personally, I’m tired of the Hollywood patriarchy killing off strong female characters. The misogyny of the writer’s world in Hollywood is just ridiculous. We’re in the 21st century for goodness sakes! Boys allow the character of Ziva to leave gracefully with a hopeful future now that her family is dead, especially since she made peace with her father.

  48. Julie says:

    Bummed, I never thought we’d see Tony and Ziva before the series finale but I figured we would IN the series finale. I’ll miss her and her chemistry with ALL of the main characters!

  49. ziverfan says:

    thankyou Cote for the wonderful work you did on NCIS,Ziva was the best charecter on tv and I will not be watching NCIS without her,I hope to see Cote on a new show or movie because she is to talented to not be seen again.

  50. Dawn says:

    This is the only show we watch! e love the character of Ziva! Why must we lose her?

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