Fall TV Preview

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.

RELATED | Fall TV: Get Premiere Dates for NCIS, NCIS: LA and Other CBS Shows

“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.”

RELATED | NCIS Exclusive: First Details From Show’s WTF?! Season Premiere

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?

Comments are monitored, so don’t go off topic, don’t frakkin’ curse and don’t bore us with how much your coworker’s sister-in-law makes per hour. Talk smart about TV!

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  1. L.H.. Chandler says:

    No Cote..Please reconsider !! I love you on this show. It will not be the same without you. Your character is what makes the show. I watch all reruns on USA… And I can’t imagine ever watching without you.. There’s still time .. Please please reconsider and stay.. This is my favorite and only show I watch…I’m a stay at home Mom and wife.. And always ready for Tuesdays at 8pm!! Once again I beg u to sign to stay on!!! Love you here in South Carolina

  2. SoFla says:

    Beginning of the end. Sad to see it go. At least I have Kensi & Deeks on LA.

    Really didn’t think it would end. Seriously hope she left because they did not offer her enough / value her enough so there is a chance they can up the offer and get her back otherwise I will definitely be watching where she ends up, she is an excellent actress and will be sorely missed.

  3. Kim R says:

    Whatever went on with her contract negotiations…they need to fix it. As a loyal fan for their entire run, I feel ripped off that what was eluded to for several seasons is just getting dropped like a hot potato. I don’t care what you do, PTB, but fix it! FIX IT!!!!! :)

  4. chyna says:

    i cant believe shes leaving, Ziva is my favorite character and i was really hoping her and tony would get together =”( its not gonna be the same

  5. Thomas Udo says:

    What does “people were shipping them” mean?

  6. I think Ziva and her story lines made the show as exciting as it is… oh well, guess ncis had a good run, shame they couldn’t do more to keep her.

  7. John says:

    A lot of the above reactions are why it’s so dangerous to drag these soap aspects on and on: actors lives go through changes over the years, perhaps with changing priorities, so it’s not a guarantee that everyone will be there once the writers finally decide to get off their collective thumbs.

  8. chris says:

    What?! I hate this. I heard she’s leaving because they wouldn’t give her as much $ as everyone else. But I still hate that she’s leaving.

    • Marissa says:

      That’s a rumor passed about. No one has confirmed it.

      • Hello says:

        And people are basing that rumor on the fact that as of last year she was making less than PP & MW. Never mind that her contract is renewed a year after theirs are (because she started in season 3) and the last it it was renewed she was given the same salary as them. Then they renewed and got bumped and it could very well be she would have been bumped to their level had she renewed.

        The reason they are staggered? The original actors signed 3 year contracts. Then have renewed for two years since then. That means MW, PP and DMc have renewed after season 3, 5, 7, 9.

        SMM signed a two year contract at the end of season 1 (he was recurring in season 1) and has renewed for two years ever since. That means he also renewed after seasons 3, 5, 7, 9.

        CDP signed a two year contract before season 2 and renewed for every 2 years since. That means she renewed after seasons 4, 6, 8, and was up for renewal this year.

        MH is on the same schedule she is. I think he renewed for only 1 year after season 3 and has for two years ever since. That put him up for renewal after seasons 4, 6, 8, and 10 although they lock him early.

        • Marissa says:

          There are a lot of other factors beside cash money per episode that can be negotiated in. Residuals, Dvd sales, merchandising, vacations, personal appearances, online sales of episodes and rentals & so forth & so on. Salary per episode isn’t the only factor, just the one we the public gets to see.

        • NoChance says:

          Mark signed a 1-year contract extension this February bringing him to the same schedule as; DMc, MW, PP, SM, RC and BD.

  9. chyna says:

    i love ncis but without Ziva…there is no ncis. you cant brake up the family and what about tony….this sucks they were just starting to get closer, open up and develope a relationship and now Ziva’s gone?? thats messed up, i cant watch anymore but i will watch her last episode……so long

  10. Given the cliff-hanger, let’s start a campaign:

  11. David Keilwitz says:

    What a disappointment. I liked Kate and when she died I had my doubts, But when Ziva came in it just clicked so well. It is the fourth (Female) character that makes the team work I must agree. Replacing that position on the team is as risky as if you were to try to replace Captain Kirk in the original series. I can only wonder is this going to be the last season of NCIS? I dread the thought.

  12. Terrie says:

    I am truly upset. I love Cotes’ character. I was hoping to see her and DiNozzo get together. You’re a beautiful woman Cote and I wish you the best in your future. I hope to see you on tv or movies. You will be missed!!

  13. karin says:

    let’s get palmer the autopsy gremlin outta the basement and into the car with the rest of the team. we don’t need a woman to round it out

  14. undine says:

    Are you kidding me? After years of building the Tony/Ziva dynamic, and it finally seeming to lead somewhere this season, we are now not going to have them getting together! WTF.

    This is ridiculous, being the female element of team Gibbs seems to be the kiss of death.

    The characters are all getting old(er) and none have a steady long term relationship that could further their character into a settled life or moving on from team Gibbs. Ziva leaving makes the character/relationship/career development for the characters even harder. I will watch the show to see how they resolve Ziva leaving, but honestly, its gotten stale and her leaving is the final nail in the coffin. I may just stop watching it once Ziva is gone and if there is no change in the characters development.

    Abbey, Tony or McGee, the core, main characters who are in the age bracket to do so, need to start having relationship arcs. Gibbs/ducky relationships won’t ever really lead anywhere and Palmer is a minor character who is a blow in. After following the core characters for so long the audience needs some kind of payoff.

    The writers need to stray from their tired ‘safe’ plot and character formulas.

  15. Brad says:

    I always wanted to be “taken down” by Ziva. She can ‘cuff’ me any day, she will be missed.

    On the way she should exit the show and add some drama…For the end of season cliff hanger:

    Opening scene, Team is in a darkened building doing their usual room to room for a group for hardened and armed criminals. The team has to split and theres only Tony, Ziva and McGee, Ziva being Ziva goes on alone. It’s dark and hard to see, SUDDENLY gun fire erupts as they close on a large room with multiple entrances. After, minutes of intense gun fire, through the dust and haze, Tony sees a dark silhouette with a gun, he fires the final shot in the fight and we all hear a Plaintive, “Tony!” as the shadowy form falls to the ground.

    Tony and McGee rush to the prostrate form, realizing as the light hits her face…we hear Tony emit a strangled, “ZIVA!” and he, loses it. McGee has to take over, calls in “Officer Down”,etc. As Tony fumbles with the gurgling wound in her chest, their eyes lock and her last line is very profound, “I’m glad it was you and not some random criminal, goodbye my love.” END scene on Tony’s face. NOW that would be an ending!

    Next show will be the investigation and fallout, Why didn’t they wait for back up?Why wasn’t Ziva wearing her vest, Tony is suspended and we see the start of a downward spiral. A HUGE twist would be as Tony hits bottom and no one seems to be able to get to him, in walks Dr. Jeanne Benoit.

    Ok there ya go, Tell me that wouldn’t stir the pot

  16. Karen Ettinger says:

    I have watched NCIS since the very first Episode and continue to watch including all reruns! Never has there been a show on TV where the Characters had such Chemistry. We saw Kate pass away and enter Ziva David whom we all fell in love with as the kick butt agent you just don’t mess with! Producers have drug out for too long the Tony/Ziva romance which never really happened, but should have:( That was disappointing to say the least! Gibbs is the Rock of the Show, but the Jamie Lee Curtis relationship was no good! We have seen Directors come and go too! Our favorite of course was Lauren Holly, but Vance was good too, and we really like the fill-in Director when Vance was out for a time grieving the death of his wife. This is one remarkable show, but don’t know how it will be without Ziva? Not too thrilled at the direction the show is taking, but Cote has to move on I guess.

  17. Jayne says:

    So very sad to see Ziva leave, but she knows what’s best for her. Hopefully the door will be kept open. As for JLC coming back? Please NOOOO!!! In her last scene as she was running from her recently released ex and Gibbs grabbed her hand to stop her, she struck this dramatic “pose” with her head turned away, reminded me of some high school production it was so awful. I do agree with an earlier post though, it would be fascinating if they could get Pam Dawber on as Gibbs love interest. Can you imagine the smoking chemistry that would happen then? Abby and Tim? Yes. Ducky needs somebody too. And Tony should fall for some sweet but plain-looking girl next door type rather than his usual model types and be happy. Love the show, always have, and will keep watching it until they get rid of my favorites.

  18. bobbie says:

    It broke my heart when Kate died. (I’m so happy to watch Rizzoli and Isles now). I felt she was replaced too soon, but was happy whenever they mentioned her later. I feel like Tony and Ziva are a mismatch.Good friends, but no magic between them. I like Tim and Abby as a couple.
    It broke my heart when Jenny Shepard was killed, also. I think the period of mourning on the show should be much longer.
    I liked Ziva, too. I like all the characters on the team. I could wax poetic about each of them. But, if Ziva is leaving, I suppose they’ll replace her, The question is, who?
    I like Tim and Abby as a couple.

  19. Lola VanDyk says:

    For everyone saying that Jamie Lee Curtis and Mark Harmon have no chemistry, Puhleeze, did you not see Freaky Friday where they played an engaged couple? They were awesome together.
    As for the departure of Ziva, I’m saddened by it as I really liked her character, but time marches on and contracts aren’t always renewed. It will be interesting to see who they bring in to balance out all the testosterone, maybe a female version of Tony, a total female player. I would also like to see Tim and Abby back together, I thought they were adorable together and I think it would be very nice to have them a couple again. As for Gibbs, I don’t know if he’ll ever be ready to settle down. I think a part of him still pines for his first wife and that’s what has prevented him from real happiness in every relationship since.

  20. Mike says:

    I just think she’s hot!

  21. JoAnn Kimball says:

    Hold on a second!!! If what I am hearing is true that De Pablo gets $50k less per episode than her male counterparts and the dispute is over boy/girl dollar value, then know that as much as I love this show, I will find it hard to continue to watch after she leaves. While I think they all do a good job, I do not feel that McGee especially is worth one penny more than De Pablo and everyone’s salary should be predicated on quality. It should NEVER be a boy/girl thing. They are ALL in this together (NB: I do make an exception to Harmon as I truly feel he carries the show.)

    The show has had a long run and I would like to see it continue inspite of the fact that, occasionally, the storyline falters. But because the chemistry is good and there are those occasional episodes that just leave you breathless, I would like to see NCIS continue for another 10 years. All, however, must be treated fairly in the process. I hope stubbornness and greed are not the root cause of these latest events. I’m counting on CBS to “make it happen” so that the team can stay in tact.

  22. Sandy says:

    I will also miss the Ziva character. It was so mich fun seeing her be the bad a$$ she is. PLEASE do not bring JLC back. When she appeared in episodes, I left the room. She has no talent…it was laughable.

  23. shanan says:

    Wow! I am so upset Ziva is leaving! Do you think it is a contract thing?! They didn’t want to pay her what she wanted?

  24. NoChance says:

    I think for I’m glad mostly for Michael’s sake. He’s long been against the pairing of Tony and Ziva and now it’s done. He can get Tony back to being an individual rather than 1/4th of Tiva.

    • Wren says:

      I completely agree. And I just have to scratch my head over how many people believe Tony should like someone who has treated him badly repeatedly. And I really feel badly for the other actors. All of these rabid knee-jerk reactions has to make all the other wonderful cast members feel as though we find them worthless. I’m incredibly ashamed of NCIS’ fan base.

      • ninamags says:

        Well, Wren, based on some of the responses that have been left here, I agree with you. It must be difficult for the original cast members to hear or read any of this kind of feedback. Rabid is accurate.

        I love Mark and Michael, especially. They are the show to me. I am glad they are still with us. I love Palmer and Ducky and of course, McGee and Abby.

  25. What about Ilia? Is he still in it?

  26. Kim R says:

    Remember when Ziva was a prisoner in North Africa? Remember when Tony found out she was supposedly lost at sea? Remember when all he could hear was “words…lots of words…” from Abby etc.? That’s how I feel. :(

  27. lisa says:

    I will not watch NCIS anymore.

  28. john says:

    Damn this will suck because NCIS was one of my favorite shows well time to move on and wish them the best then.

  29. Sue says:

    Abby from the Coast Guard! Awesome idea! They could do a several show arc with the Coast Guard until they find another agent that would be accepted by the viewers.

  30. Kristin T. says:

    I have heard rumors that this is going to be the final season for NCIS anyway, don’t know if there is any truth to that or not, but this news bums me out a great deal. I love Ziva and love Cote playing her. The show isn’t going to be the same without her. I adore Mark, Michael, Sean, Pauley, David and the rest, but Cote helped make the show what it has been and is. Not sure next season is going to be as great without her. I will still watch, but overall most network TV sucks and NCIS is one of the few shows still worth watching. But have to admit, if they don’t match her character, then not sure it will be worth continuing after this season anyway. :(

  31. abby says:

    This is horrible news. Love Ziva, Tiva and the whole cast’s chemistry

  32. Amari says:

    She can’t leave she just can’t if she does I’m not watching the show anymore

  33. Alisa Neely says:

    I AM SOOOOOOOO THRILLED with this news…..i’m way passed SICK of ZIVA & TIVA….tptb MESSED UP, when they kept shoving tiva down everyone’s throat…..NOT all NCIS FANS love her or the pairing…..tony was turned STUPID and when ever teamed up with ziva; he was made to look like he couldn’t handle himself in a fight…..and allowing ZIVA to GIVE ORDERS to tony and tim, as if she was SFA….was just WRONG…..i had NEVER heard of cote, before she was on NCIS….un like mark, micheal and david.

    i’m a TONY DiNozzo fan….and am THRILLED to see her gone.


  34. Cooper says:

    I am sorry Cote is leaving, but she has a life and is entitled to live it as she wishes. I also think her departure offers a number of opportunities for NCIS to renew and refresh itself. Tony is 40+ and need to grow up. Gibbs needs to take a more prominent role. As far as a love interest for Gibbs, I vote for Alex Kingston. While I like Jamie Lee Curtis, I really didn’t like she and Gibbs together. Vance has never been one of my favorites. I have always enjoyed this show. I wish the writers, producers and rest of the creative team well in fashioning a re-energized show. And I thank Cote de Pablo for her years as Ziva.

    • JC says:

      Yes, I second the vote for Alex Kingston. Anytime they bring her back, I am so there. :)

    • cernicalo says:

      Just curious, why does a love interest have to be a regular cast member? I’d prefer personal relationships be off-screen. Let the show be what it is: a Navy cop show with a fun, tight-knit, competent team solving interesting cases.

      • JC says:

        Where did they say they wanted the love interest to be a regular cast member?

        • cernicalo says:

          I’m referencing bringing in well-known actresses as love interests, probably on a regular basis. Why is that necessary? I’m not interested in actually seeing any romantic entanglements at all.

          • JC says:

            I don’t recall anyone saying it was “necessary” either. I don’t think it’s “necessary”, implying required. But personally I loved Alex Kingston as River Song on Doctor Who, and her episode in season ten was the only one I watched, other than the premiere, and it did not disappoint. Bringing her back in any capacity, love interest or no, would give me one very good reason to start watching the show again. As to your other point, I think the likelihood of no romance at all on the show is about the same as the likelihood of the Tiva shippers getting the happy ending they’re hoping for…pretty low. Not because I wish it otherwise, but because I think totally romance-free shows are a thing of the past. I can’t think of a single current show I watch that hasn’t had some relationship stuff in it at some point, even Warehouse 13. Even the CSI shows all have their side romances. With Tiva dead, they WILL bring in someone for either Gibbs or Tony (or both) at some point during this season. You can bet on it. Like it or not, it’s just a fact of modern TV.

          • cernicalo says:

            “Even the CSI shows all have their side romances. With Tiva dead, they WILL bring in someone for either Gibbs or Tony (or both) at some point during this season. You can bet on it. Like it or not, it’s just a fact of modern TV.” So, while not necessary, perhaps inevitable nevertheless. My only hope, though, is that it does remain a ‘side romance’. I was disgusted at how the TIVA pairing took precedence over all of the other characters. As an ensemble show, the constant soap-ish emphasis was a detriment.

          • JC says:

            I think inevitable would probably be accurate. And I can definitely sympathize and agree with the wish for it to not take over the show. I didn’t care for Tiva myself, although not having watched most of season ten, I’m not sure how bad it got.

  35. CTW says:

    Well I’ve lost touch since season four. But please just don’t kill her like you did Kate. I hated that because she was great and very sweet . Even if she was only a two season character you could have saved her for other episodes. As for tony he make miss ziva and they are cute together. But he’s a lady’s man he doesn’t have a problem finding someone esle it’ comes easy to him.

  36. Liz Miller says:

    I am in love with Ziva David, but I will survive to see what the next agent brings to the team. I also hope that at least one or two of the characters will get some sort of partnership going.

  37. Gregory says:

    Bring in Jamie Luner for Gibbs. She’s a hot redhead and most people will have probably forgotten that she played a sex changed man in season one. She’s the “guy” that Tony kissed.

  38. Gretchen says:

    I am heartbroken!! Can we at least have a Tony – Ziva moment before she exits? Better yet, when the series finally goes off air, bring back Ziva for a permanent relationship with Tony. I wish we knew her reasons for exiting. Why leave a plum actress job on a top television series? Seems crazy to me.

  39. I dont believe this BS about Ziva.
    CBS should pay what she deserves or create a new drama based on her character that is the best thing of the show.
    When they see the rating going dowwwwn, they will know her importance in the show.
    Y PUNTO.

  40. ron says:

    replacing Ziva on the show would be like replacing Elaine on Seinfeld. Ziva brings so much to the show and the whole cast gels together perfectly, this is a vare rare thing in tv I only seen it happen a few times in tv history lucy and desi, mash, law and order svu, and ncis with ziva

  41. Shar7498 says:

    I never cared for the TIVA story line and was getting very tired of it. I like both of them as individual characters and friends. I would like to see her leave to head up Massad (sp?). She could do guest shots then.

  42. CJ says:

    Let me get this straight. Based on the tone of the reactions, I’m supposed to turn my back on the remaining 7 wonderful actors and boycott the show in support of an actress who VOLUNTARILY walks away from $120k per episode when it takes me almost 3 YEARS of my life to make that much? Ummm. No.

  43. Bret says:

    Come on CBS! You got away with it before! Open the new season with Tony waking to the sound of the shower running. He gets up goes to the bathroom and sees Kate lathering up!!!!!!

  44. Believe it or not, I loved Gibbs with the hooker, can’t remember her name. I’d just like to see Gibbs in a relationship, and not a young bimbo. I haven’t like any of the women so far, not anyone in the military, or Kate’s sister. Hi wife, Pam Dawber would be nice to see every once in a while. Hell, they put his kid in it, why not his wife?

  45. Gar says:

    Gibbs should find a way to get CGIS agent Abigail Borin to leave the guard and join NCIS to replace Ziva. she already has chemistry with the main characters. sort of the way Kate ended up on the team in the pilot episode.

  46. mara says:

    I might be another comment like every other but WTF were they thinking????? Tiva is not coming back? They should have married Ziva n Tony 2 seasons ago! No Tiva? No McAbby? Im in love w NCIS but they might lose viewers. Me included!

  47. AH says:

    Hope it’s true she herself made this decision. No matter what happens, the show won’t be as spicy & interesting — in a Ziva way… I don’t know…I wish her the best, whatever she ends up doing. Didn’t realize it’s been 10 years already.

  48. cernicalo says:

    CdP leaving NCIS is her personal decision and a good one at that. Her character was going nowhere. Why can’t everyone respect her career choices and let her (and NCIS) move on? The tearing of hair and gnashing of teeth, petitions and threats of never watching the show again might make viewers feel better in the short term but, in the end, is pointless. Give the actress and the show a chance to show us what they can do separately. I, for one, am truly looking forward to the next season and wish CdP the best in her future endeavors.

  49. Samantha says:

    It feels like a cruel betrayal after 8 years of devoted watching. Whatever Cote’s personal reasons for leaving (and I don’t need to know), it still feels like a great let down after so many years of teasing and build-up to have it all come crashing down without satisfaction given to the loyal fans. I think it’s the death knell for the whole show. Can they keep manipulating viewers and except them to remain enthralled with the show? If they kill her off, we just have a parallel story to Gibbs/Shanon/Jenny/Kate but with Tony mourning and torturing himself for years to come along with Gibbs. Bad move.

  50. Paloma says:

    I agree that NCIS has been stale and somewhat boring for a couple of seasons now. I felt zero chemistry between Tony and Ziva, that ship having sailed several years ago. McGee is chronically underused. We definitely need a shake up.

    I propose that the agent that they get to replace Ziva is not a new love interest for Tony because we have been there and done that and done that again. I’d love to see them change up the dynamic with someone smart who sees things from a vastly different angle than the rest of the team. Someone Gibbs admires.

    What I would like to see with Tony is a surprise meeting with Jeanne Benoit during a case and then a rekindling of that mature adult relationship. I liked Tony during that time. I liked seeing his growth as a person … something that unfortunately did not really outlast the relationship.

    • JC says:

      I completely agree with all of this. I was actually hoping for a shakeup after the season nine finale, but when the season ten premiere aired and it just set everything back to the status quo I gave up. But now I’m intrigued. How will they handle it? Who will replace her? While I have nothing in particular against Ziva herself, the show badly needed to be shaken out of its comfortable rut. Maybe this will do it. And yes, I’d like to see Jeanne back in Tony’s life too. And a few more appearances from Alex Kingston. :)

      • Alisa Neely says:

        Jeanne ACCUSED tony of MURDERING her father for GOD’S SAKES…..do you HATE tony that much, to want to STICK him with her after that?…..that’s as BAD as what ziva did after the whole “michael rivkin” deal…..NOT only that; she was FAR too DEMANDING…..she thought he’d just fine BUYING a house, after he agreed to renting a place together…..even her co-worker thought she was over-stepping there……he needs someone who RESPECTS him and isn’t going to accuse him of MURDER, because they get ANGRY with him for doing his JOB or trying to defend himself.

        *shakes head*

        • JC says:

          Alisa, seriously, what is with your posts and the random capitals? It’s all UP down UP down with no rhyme or reason behind it. Quite frankly, it makes you look hysterical (and I don’t mean funny). As for Jeanne, she accused Tony of murder. Which is bad. He seduced and slept with her under false premises. Also bad. I don’t like what Jeanne did I admit, but I did enjoy their relationship all the way up to that. Even though he was undercover, Tony to me seemed more like a real boy that season than he has any time before or since, and she’s the only woman on the show that I ever really believed that Tony loved. I think they could get past the murder accusation, but I do understand if the fans can’t. *shrugs*. Now a question for you. What woman could you see Tony with? Or would any woman ever be acceptable? They’re going to put him with someone eventually. It’s nearly inevitable. I doubt it will be Jeanne, in spite of my preferences. It doesn’t look like it will be Ziva now. So who would you choose?