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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1192 Comments
  1. Torri says:

    NOOOOOOOOO!!! Oh this is gonna suck! She is a Great actress !!! And I’m really going to miss her character “ziva” … :( I wish her the best of luck !!!!

  2. Dav says:

    I always thought it was absurd that they would have someone from a foreign intelligence service working for a US government agency who investigated our military. That is just too rediculous to be believed. I actually stopped watching when she joined the show. Now, I may actually start watching again.

  3. John says:

    though i liked ziva in this role…kate was better before they killed her off…somewhere this show got lost in transaction…i will be a fan of ncis for life…but we need some sexy brought back into the show…kate had that…hope the shows doesn’t dive now…

  4. Silvia says:

    It’s too bad she’s leaving. But I’m still hopeful that Cote can guest star as Tony’s wife… After all they wouldn’t be breaking any of Gibbs’ rules then.

    • Laura says:

      That would be awesome!!! just if they don’t kill her or send her to Israel again…… But that would be awesome cuz we’d still have our Israeli Ninja with the man who we all want to see her in the show I mean Come On! They totally have something special they have been trough things together that NO ONE ELSE HAS BEEN TROUGH! Like Tony killing Ziva’s friend (Michael Rivkin) on season 6 what did that bring? Only ONE thing it got them EVEN CLOSER when they were already close…… And then Ziva’s father died and who’s left for her?? Tony! so we’d all like to see those too married instead of Killing another close member of this family!

  5. Ian says:

    While I am sad to see Cote leave I will continue watching and loving NCIS. I have watched it from the beginning. Its ridiculous to say that the show is gonna tank now that she is leaving. It was a hit before Cote joined and will be a hit after. I don’t think the only reason the show was good was because of Cote. I think that they should bring back character from the show as a series regular that way it eases the pain and there is already chemistry with the cast. I have always loved Diane Neal as Agent Borin maybe she can transfer to NCIS. Maybe Sarah Jane Morris as E.J could return. I know some people hated E.J but maybe people could warm up to her.

    • Pennagirl says:

      Oh NOOOOOOO, do NOT bring back EJ Barrett, hated that character. And don’t bring back Jeanne Benoit either!

    • Huskygrl says:

      No please, no E.J,! She was dreadful in every way! There are lots of great actresses out there, many have already been suggested. Please go forward and not back!

      • JCK says:

        My hope is a lady friend for Gibbs. Not as a member of the team. I have long hoped for Tea Leoni as a love interest for Gibbs. Maybe they should replace Ziva with a lady who favors McGee and shakes up the Tabby [Tim/Abby] potential.

  6. Laura says:

    After 8 AMAZING seasons with Cote aka Ziva all the fun and action from our loved kick ass Israeli Ninja I just CAN’T imagine the show without her….. And now I’ll have to find another FAVORITE show to watch cuz…. NCIS without Ziva it just won’t be the same so to the producers of NCIS good luck when you go from 100% rating and people to 20%……. Good luck finding a person that can replace Cote/Ziva (THING THAT CAN’T HAPPEN) and the thing I’ll miss the most…. and I think we ALL will is Tiva….. There will NEVER EVER EVER be someone that’s that close to Tony like Ziva was… Specially on season 6… So yeah good luck producers of NCIS finding a new character that will get you the same popularity as the family in NCIS you just killed…….. 😞😢

  7. I love NCIS! Cote will be missed, but I do wish her well. I really don’t think NCIS will survive without her because the whole cast is outstanding working together. It is a show that has been enjoyed for going on 11 years. I also loved JAG and miss that show! Life goes on. The stars probably do get tired of the grind and need to move on in their own lives. It just won’t be the same with out her! I thank her and the rest of the cast for the enjoyment and entertainment they have afforded us. It was a great show!

  8. Mandy says:

    I’m just so sad for tony… He tried to hard to love her. I hope they give her a good send out like she finally gets peace and gets to discover who she is away from the fighting. I hope they bring her back in the last episode to be with Tony… The characters deserve their happy ending.

    • This *IS* a happy ending for Tony. He won’t have to worry about a teammate assaulting him with a loaded gun again. Hopefully they’ll kill her off and we won’t have to worry about her ever popping up again.

  9. Laura says:

    Just have to say (again) good luck finding a new job dear producers after u just killed the BEST familly on TV (unless Ziva’s still on the show but not as an agent but Tony’s WIFE) so yeah good luck….

  10. I and my wife have watched NCIS almost from the beginning. We enjoy it every week. I think it’s a great hour of entertainment each week. Maybe with me is the fact I spent 4 years in the US NAVY. But anyway,we will miss ZIVA. Thay will never beable to replace her. So,GOOD LUCK to ZIVA.

  11. Annie says:

    This is the worst news…am so disappointed…have been a loyal fans for years…Ziva is my favourite….it does not matter who they bring…it will never be the same….that’s it for NCIS…I”LL NEVER WATCH AGAIN…..

  12. Cambie says:

    Very disappointing. I enjoyed Ziva and the standing joke of her mangling of American idioms. I’d heard that she’d been in contract negotiations, but hoped they could reach an agreement. I hope Cote didn’t get bad advice from her agent and that things work out for her.

    I’m wondering how this will play out. Ziva got her US citizenship so it’s not a case of her having to go back to Israel because she no longer has a job. Hope they don’t use the standard death exit ploy.

  13. I am soo sad :( Ziva was my favourite character. The show wont be the same without her. I can’t believe this is happening. I’m Heartbroken

  14. Mary M says:

    Sad that Ziva is leaving, but hey, we ALL KNEW that SOMETHING BIG was happening at the Season 10′s finale…especially, after we all saw Tony, McGee, and Ziva turn in their badges to the Director… As for de Pablo, it’s been great having you for 8 seasons, and we’re sorry that you’re leaving! Good luck to your future endeavors, and we hope to see ya make guest appearances in NCIS in the future… Now, maybe we can see Agent Borin’s character ( played by Diane Neal…who btw, is a great actress…loved her in Law and Order SVU) develop more and maybe transfer to NCIS as part of Gibbs’ team… AND yeah, LOVE THE REST OF NCIS CHARACTERS (Gibbs, Abby, McGee, Tony, Palmer and Ducky…even Vance and Dornagin)…YOU GUYS ROCK! And LOVE the gentle banter between Fornell and Gibbs (hoping that Gibbs DIDN’T SHOOT Fornell, cuz that’d totally suck!) HMMM…it’ll be interesting how the 11th season opens…

  15. How Depressing! Loved the Ziva character, expertly portrayed by Cote. She was such a strong character and will be hard to replace. This should be very interesting. The “chemistry” of these characters make this show so great. NCIS , still the best show on tv.

  16. Sally says:

    As far as I know season11 is going to be the last season anyway. Good luck to Cote. You will be greatly missed.

  17. Pati says:

    I would like to know how Crossing Lines is doing. I thought it refreshing and interesting. Would like to see it succeed, but am almost afraid to wish for that.
    Pati

  18. JBC says:

    I would like to see a young handsome new Male Agent get added to this cast. Someone sharp, and someone Tony could be a little jealous of, someone to keep him on his toes.. A good crime solving duo. As far as romance, it is time McGee and Abby go down that road.

  19. Pat Farrar says:

    Big Ziva fan here, but NOT Tiva. Ya know, Mossad needs a new director. Why not another David?

  20. Kathi says:

    With that news I exit the show…

    Ziva was the only thing keeping me tuned in.

    Agents of Shield just got a big bump in the ratings

  21. Lee Fowler says:

    NOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO!!!!!!!! MY HOPES AND DREAMS ARE CRUSHED TODAY!!!!!!!! GAH!!!!!!!!! TIVA!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  22. Trella says:

    I too, will miss Ziva. The chemistry between she and Tony was unmistakable, but a little too obvious. As in Moonlighting, when the characters actually do go beyond a certain point, there’s no more anticipation. It’s right there in your face. I enjoy the “dance” rather than the “act”.
    I think there could one of two scenarios that Ziva could take. Since she is Ely David’s only living relative, it could be she’s goes back to Israel to take his place as the Director of the Mossad. Or, we are forgetting about another person she had a “chemistry” with. It could be Damon (the muscle bound soldier) that comes back and she goes with him. He will have become completely clean, looking for a solid foundation to build a life on, and Ziva was the one person he could rely on to remain ever loyal and understanding of him.
    Anyway, Cote, many happens returns on your journey from NCIS to the real world. May you get what you want and deserve. You were indeed loved on NCIS.

  23. Paige says:

    Although I’m sad that no more Ziva, I understand why the actress would want to leave. Eight years is a long time to be one character. At least she has the class to come back to wrap up the story instead of leaving fans hanging. And who knows, her replacement might be just as good. When they replaced Kate with Ziva it turned out to be a good thing. I’ll reserve judgment on the replacement when she appears.

  24. David Wilkins says:

    I see alot of comments regarding NCIS. I have to agree with most of them. I do not get to watch TV much because of work, but when I do , it is NCIS at the top of the list. The people commenting on Ziva and Tony’s character are right in my opinion about the chemistry between them. You can sure see it on screen. I will definitely miss Zivas character. I hope that she does not get killed off or something. I am hoping the writers will just assign her to another area in the hopes that maybe one day she might reappear. I also hope that she does well in any future endeavors. I believe she is a great actress and would like to see her in an action film of some sort if that is what she wants to do. As far as Tony’s character, I have to agree with his playboy type ethics getting a little boring. I do hope they can find someone with as much if not more chemistry as Ziva’s character with Tony. Best of luck to the whole team of NCIS.

  25. Cassie says:

    They had a grand opportunity to capitalize on TIVA during the car crash but blew it. The crash was built up and then they walked away. Useless. Now they will never have that chance – because it has been announced she is leaving. This sucks.

  26. Cathy says:

    Please Ziva don’t leave, take a sabbatical maybe, but don’t leave!

  27. Sherri Dorbritz says:

    I am sorry to see Cote leave the show. I wish her well and look forward to seeing what she does next. I would rather the show NOT bring in another “love interest” for Tony. We (as fans) have invested 8 years into Tony and Ziva and need time to adjust. I still hope that when the show ends. . . . . Tony and Ziva will be together in the great beyond. Now what can we do about McGee and Abby. .. . . . . .

  28. Ribert Clark says:

    I am really bummed that Cote is leaving I think now would be a good time to bring back the Jean Bennett character LA Gran Wi’s daughter for Tony and bring back the army colonel female to work with Gibbs team and be Gibbs love interest and possibly a new interest for the director.

  29. Sarah says:

    I’m really sad, but I will be really angry if they kill Ziva off!

  30. Jay says:

    I wish Coty the best, but I’m not really sorry to see the character go. I never liked her as much as Kate and the Zivacentric storylines that focused on her family and other characters from her past are some of my least favorite episodes. Hopefully they won’t even think of replacing her with Agent E. J. Barrett. I did not like that character and hated her with Tony.

    More appearances by CGIS Agent Abigail Borin would be nice, and she’s a good match for Gibbs. But I hope we’ll never again see the Jamie Lee Curtis character, Kate’s sister or Allison Hart. And it would also be an improvement if Abby went back to being more like she was in the first season instead of the juvenile brat that she’s become.

    • JC says:

      Why is she a good match for Gibbs? She’s young enough to be his daughter. (In fact, Diane Neal is six years younger than Pauley Perrette.)

      • Jay says:

        I didn’t even think about that. My opinion was based more on the fact that they have similar personalities and interests – and she’s a redhead. I don’t know what age her character is supposed to be. And I had no idea Pauley Perrette is that old! I know Abby isn’t supposed to be in her 40′s, but now I feel even more strongly that she needs to modify her behavior.

        • JC says:

          Yeah, I don’t know what age her character is supposed to be either, but there’s a twenty-four year age gap between the actors. And yeah, I know, she’s been deliberately set up as a female Gibbs from the beginning, but to me that makes a pairing between them less attractive, not more. Would you want to date yourself? :) I love her character though, pairing or no, and I wouldn’t be unhappy about seeing more of her. Just not as a Gibbs love interest. I wouldn’t mind if they brought back Alex Kingston’s character for that though.

  31. Susan says:

    We will miss Cote. She did a fantastic job with the Ziva role. We don’t have a DVR, so we will probably be tuning into the new S.H.E.I.L.D. show. We have always been loyal viewers of NCIS, but now may be the time for a change……

  32. D. Moore (retired Navy) says:

    Seems like when you have a winning chemistry with a show , you guys always screw it up. I’m sorry but you did the same thing with Jag, and I do miss that show.

  33. Lisa says:

    I’ll probably stop watching without Ziva. She really made the show more interesting.

  34. Carol Childers says:

    Dissapointed that Ziva will not continue with the show. Her character was entertaining and added much to the program. Wish her good luck.

  35. Nytwyng says:

    Have always been more of a casual fan of NCIS, but have enjoyed Ziva. I’ll miss her when (if) I watch new episodes.

    Now, if we could only get rid of Tony…HE’s why I’ve never become more than a casual fan. I’ve never cared for the character since day one.

  36. Pam Lehr says:

    I am sick about this! Ziva is awesome! I wish Cote the very best and look forward to her next project! But NCIS will never ever be the same! First Kate now Ziva, not a good track record people!! I am in mourning! Poor Tony! Abby is going to be another disater! Way to go CBS/NCIS! This was my favorite show but after this stupid move we shall see! Now they are bringing a new love interest for Tim, why? Abby watch out!

  37. Maria says:

    I was sad to see Kate leave NCIS all those years ago, and wondered if the character brought in to “replace” her would fit in as well as Kate did. Then Ziva entered. And she was so different from Kate, so Ziva never felt like a “replacement” for Kate. Ziva was Ziva and I fell in love with the character. And though I’m sad to see Ziva leaving the show, I’m also excited to see what type of character will “replace” her. But after watching NCIS for so many years, I have faith that who ever comes on the show next will fit in just fine.

    NCIS is a brilliant show with great characters portrayed by very talanted actors and actresses. So I’m thinking – some new blood in the show is not a bad idea at all. Every show needs to evolve to stay on top. That’s why I’m not going to call Ziva leaving a bad thing. It turned out well when Kate left, and I’m sure it will this time as well. I think the viewers should give the shows creators some credit. They’ve done an excellent job so far, and I don’t think they’ll disappoint us with how ever they chose to move the show forward.

    All I can say is; keep up the great work with one of the best TV-shows ever! And good luck to Cote de Pablo. I wish her all the best and thank her for the great job she’s done on NCIS. For the rest of “team Gibbs”; you are the best and I’m really looking forward to season 11!

  38. mistycatz says:

    I think that Ziva leaving is the shake up the show needs, Tony and Ziva were really boring, do agree they should bring back Abbey from Coast Guard loved her on SVU, and on the 2 shows on NCIS, also agree Jamie Lee and Mark didn”t have the Chem. Now all they need is a “GOOD” replacement. Please remember these are my opinions Yea NCIS

  39. Ange says:

    I am disappointed that Cote is leaving but not surprised. Last contract discussion was settled shortly there after Mark Harmon. On the other hand, I am glad because I did not like the idea of Ziva and Tony. I loved Ziva because of her kick behind sense and the skill Gibbs trusted when it came to her marksmanship. I did not like the direction the writers seemed to go with she and Tony. I only hope they do not kill her like they did Kate although that opened up for her entrance.

  40. People, it’s a done deal. She’s gone. Her coworkers can’t bring her back and the show/studio apparently doesn’t want her badly enough to pay her whatever she was asking for. This is how the world works – if you want more money, sometimes you have to change jobs.

  41. Dorothy says:

    I love Ziva. I do wish there were some male/female relationships. I wish Abby would “grow-up” a little more. Don’t bring back Jamie Lee Curtis…let her sell yogurt instead. How many law enforcement people go through life w/o marrying at least once? Oh, I don’t like the director either. Kate was too prudish for my taste. All this being said, if de Pablo wants to go…let her..but if over more pay..then pay her. Don’t ruin this show to the point of completely losing it.

  42. Mark Harmon has a TON of pull with this series, and if Cote de Pablo is leaving, it is with his blessing or behind the scenes PUSH. He axed Jenny/Lauren Holly because of personality conflicts and he brought in Shane Brenneman to replace creator Bellasario. Nothing happens on that show that doesn’t have Mark Harmon’s finger prints on it.

    We have NOT heard the end of this story.

  43. Gina says:

    And I thought my day could not get any worse LOL
    Thank u cote for 8 amazing years and thanks NCIS for 10 wonderful years!!!!!!!!!!
    Now is time for me to move on, Season 10 was my last season, not even want to watch her last episode NCIS ends for me with season 10.
    No COTE = No NCIS
    Welcome S.H.I.E.L.D

  44. John says:

    Not terribly “bummed” as I don’t watch the show for the soap.

    In fact since they do it so badly I’m rather put off by it.

  45. DebbieMae says:

    Had a chat with the FANS in my household. We think that they should write Ziva and Tony into a relationship. They can not work together as a couple. Married or in lust, Tony will have to deal with a committed relationship and possible babies and weddings and such. Lots of phone calls and poss guess spots here and there. Kind of like Tony’s Dad. Maybe she and the old man can settle into a place. Or Ziva finds her self back home and pregant with Tony’s Love child. Or let her leave and Tony chase her back and forth for the season as the relationship grows. OPTIONS>>>>
    What are your thoughts?
    BE CREATIVE!!!! DO NOT KILL HER OFF.

    • That’s a horrible idea. Killing her off is the best thing. Ziva is an atrocious character who has committed serious crimes against the US. She should never have been allowed back in the country in the first place. Shackling her to Tony is sick.

    • Marissa says:

      That all sounds like a badly overwrought soap opera plot.

  46. JJ says:

    I hate that she’s leaving but I wish her well, she gave us 8 years of Ziva and that’s pretty incredible. As a Tiva shipper I’m disappointed we won’t get to see her and Tony together but oddly enough I think this is the only way that these two characters could actually get together. Hopefully they’ll write her off properly and give her and Tony a happy ending off screen.

  47. Flossie says:

    i just want to know why Ziva is leaving, PAY HER MORE, she needs to stay, that makes the show best of all when we have all the right people in it, ZIVA pleeeeeease stay

  48. steven Gaynor says:

    Many shows have survived the loss of a regular and thrived afterward – look at Gunsmoke, Bonanza, M*A*S*H, Cheers, Law & Order, and NCIS itself. Good scripts and likeable characters can keep a show on for a long time. They will probably bring in someone new and they will end up being just as beloved as were Kate and Ziva. The new character will mean new storylines. I’m excited to see how they will handle it.

    On a separate note, they should bring Robert Vaughn in to play an old acquaintance of Ducky – opening up a mystery from their past.

  49. Nic says:

    I loved Sasha Alexander. Her chemistry with Michael Weatherly was great and it was always a brother/sister vibe. I think his character had the best romantic relationship match up with Cote. She will be missed. I think Jamie Lee Curtis and Mark Harmon look too much alike (she looks like his older brother). That was gross to watch. I feel they would need to replace Ziva with another strong female agent. Ziva and Tony seemed right for each other. It would be weird if his new partner was also the love of his life so maybe they should finally put Tim and Abby together, work on finding Tony someone (he will need time to heal if ziva dies or moves away because they have slowly been pushing the whole Tiva thing. It will look sloppy if he just bounces back, unless they do get together and we just hear about her and not see her on the show. Didn’t they do that with Grissom?), and it would be nice for Gibbs to find love and just another replacement for his first love that he will just divorce. He was great with Jenny. They really don’t have lives outside work so it gets really easy to pair everyone up.

  50. Badpenny says:

    One less reason to watch NCIS now. Good thing Marvel is on at the same time. :)

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