Stars on ncis

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NCIS is entering its eighteenth season this year—and it's showing no signs of slowing down.

The CBS crime drama, which aired its first episode in 2003, has been such a success that it inspired two spinoffs: NCIS: Los Angeles and NCIS: New Orleans. While the newer shows are very popular, loyal fans can't get enough of the original series and its star-studded cast. Mark Harmon, Wilmer Valderrama, David McCallum, and the rest of the actors and actresses on NCIS make the procedural what it is.

Some cast members have come and gone over the years, including Pauley Perrette, whose controversial exit in 2017 left long-time viewers devastated. Still, others have stuck around since the beginning. There are even a few who left briefly before making a shocking comeback. (We're looking at you, Cote de Pablo!)

Sadly, the show is gearing up to lose another beloved character: Sloane, played by Maria Bello, is reportedly leaving this season. Details about her exit are still fuzzy, but many are speculating that her goodbye might have something to do with her daughter, Faith (Kate Hamilton). But will Sloane and Gibbs finally have a ~moment~ before she's gone for good? Hope so!

Whether you're just getting introduced to NCIS from season one, or have been a fan for years, it's important to understand who's who. Here's everything you need to know about the old and returning cast of NCIS.

Mark Harmon as Special Agent Leroy Jethro Gibbs

Gibbs is a former U.S. Marine turned special agent, and the commander of the Naval Criminal Investigative Service team on NCIS. In real life, Mark has earned multiple Emmy Award and Golden Globe Award nominations throughout his long career in television and film. Most recently, you've probably seen him in The West Wing and Freaky Friday.

Sean Murray as Special Agent Timothy McGee

McGee is a Senior Field Agent who works on the main NCIS Major Case Response Team and—despite plenty of rumors—is not leaving the show. Disney lovers will remember a younger Sean as Thackery Binx, his breakout role in Hocus Pocus.

Wilmer Valderrama as Special Agent Nicholas "Nick" Torres

Wilmer rose to fame for his iconic role as Fez on That '70s Show. On NCIS, he stars as an undercover agent and primary member of the Major Case Response Team.

Emily Wickersham as Special Agent Eleanor "Ellie" Bishop

Before joining the NCIS team as a Special Agent, Ellie was an analyst for the National Security Agency where she examined the Middle East to determine any potential threats. Outside of work, Emily likes to hang with her seriously adorable dog, Miguel.

Diona Reasonover as Forensic Scientist Kasie Hines

Kasie first appeared as Ducky's graduate assistant in season 15 while he took time away to write a book. Eventually, she a earned a permanent role as a Forensic Scientist for the Major Case Response Team. Before taking on the role of Kasie, Diona starred as Charmaine Eskowitz in the television show Clipped.

Brian Dietzen as Dr. Jimmy Palmer

Jimmy—AKA the "Autopsy Gremlin"—is a long-standing member of the NCIS team who was promoted to the role of Chief Medical Examiner after Ducky stepped down. Fun fact: In 2003, Brian performed in the film From Justin to Kelly alongside Kelly Clarkson.

David McCallum as Dr. Donald "Ducky" Mallard

Ducky began his career with the Naval Criminal Investigative Service as the Chief Medical Examiner. After announcing he was leaving in season 16, the beloved doctor returned as the "NCIS historian." Fans of '60s shows may have seen David on The Man from U.N.C.L.E.

Rocky Carroll as NCIS Director Leon Vance

Leon Vance is the suit-wearing Director who's been part of the crime team for years. The actor who portrays him is best known for his starring role on the FOX series Roc.

Maria Bello as Special Agent Jacqueline "Jack" Sloane

Jack joined in 2015 as a Forensic Psychologist. She was previously in the Army, but was honorably discharged after enduring a traumatic capture in Afghanistan. This year, Sloane is gearing up to make her exit—a move that will surely make fans sad!

The actress who plays Jack has appeared in a number of films, including Permanent Midnight, Payback, and Coyote Ugly.

Cote de Pablo as Special Agent Ziva David

Ziva is a Special Agent on the NCIS team who was thought to be dead for years before her sudden reappearance during season 16. During her hiatus from NCIS, Cote was in a historical drama called The Dovekeepers.

Pauley Perrette as Forensic Scientist Abby Sciuto

Abby was the Forensic Scientist on the Major Case Response Team for 15 years before stepping down after discovering a contract killer was after her. Pauley was starring in a sitcom called Broke, but she recently said she is "finally and happily retired" from the biz.

Michael Weatherly as Special Agent Anthony "Tony" DiNozzo

Tony was the Senior Field Agent and second in command to Gibbs. After fifteen years of service, he resigned to care for his and Ziva's daughter. Now, Michael heads up Bull on CBS.

Lauren Holly as Director Jenny Shepard

Jenny was the former Director of NCIS up until she tragically died in the field in May 2008. After leaving the show, Lauren landed a recurring role in Netflix's Designated Survivor.

Kelly O'SullivanContent Strategy EditorKelly O’Sullivan is the content strategy editor for The Pioneer Woman and manages the website’s social channels, in addition to covering entertainment and lifestyle news.

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Eve CrosbieFrom Michael Weatherly and Pauley Perrette to Maria Bello, find out what the actors who have left the hit CBS series are up to now

NCIS fans were thrilled recently when it was confirmed that the hugely popular CBS series will be returning for a 19th season. 

MORE: NCIS star teases 'emotional' and 'controversial' season 18 finale

While viewers can now rest easy knowing that Mark Harmon is staying put as the inimitable Leroy Jethro Gibbs, it did seem for a moment that the show was setting the scene for his exit.

But what about the other stars who have left the series? Having been on screens for nearly two decades, the naval drama has seen plenty of cast members come and go over the years. From Michael Weatherly to Maria Bello, find out what the actors who have left the hit CBS series are up to now...

WATCH: NCIS star Mark Harmon opens up about his favourite memories on set

Michael Weatherly

After 13 seasons as special agent Anthony DiNozzo, Michael Weatherly made the decision to move on from the show and look for roles elsewhere - and it didn't take him long. 


Michael Weatherly played Anthony DiNozzo

In 2016, just months after his character handed in his resignation, Michael made his debut on CBS's Bull, which is loosely based on the early career of TV's Dr Phil. Half a decade later, the show is still going strong and is about to wrap up its fifth season.

MORE: The best NCIS celebrity guest stars of all time

MORE: NCIS: The original storyline for Brian Dietzen's Jimmy Palmer might surprise you

Pauley Perrette

Pauley Perrette's exit in 2018 came as a bit of a shock to fans. On the show, her character Abby Sciuto resigned after an assassination attempt, but according to multiple reports, Pauley left after a falling out with the series lead Mark Harmon.  The two had a number of clashes behind-the-scenes after Mark brought his dog to set, where it bit a crewmember leaving him needing 15 stitches. 


Pauley Perrette played Abby Sciuto

While Pauley went on to land a lead role on the 2020 sitcom Broke, the show was cancelled less than a year later, and she announced that she was officially retiring from acting.

Cote de Pablo

Viewers were led to believe that Cote de Pablo's character Ziva David died at the end of season 11, but she made a shock return in season 16 when it was revealed she had faked her death. 


Cote de Pablo played Ziva David

Away from the series, Cote has held roles in the films The 33 and The Last Rites of Ransom Pride and the CBS miniseries The Dovekeepers. More recently, she stepped behind the camera to work as a producer on 2019's MIA.

Jennifer Esposito

Jennifer Esposito's time on the show was short but sweet. She joined in 2016 for a one-season arc as Alex Quinn before bowing out of the show in the finale. Since then, she's gone on to land roles in Law and Order: SVU, Amazon's The Boys and comedy series Awkwafina Is Nora from Queens.


Jennifer Esposito played Alex Quinn

Duane Henry

Brit actor Duane Henry first appeared as MI6 agent Henry Reeves in season 13 of NCIS and returned as a main cast member for season 14 but was written out just a year later. According to sources, the writers' room didn't know what to do with his character after the showrunner who created him passed away, so they chose to kill him off. 


Duane Henry played Henry Reeves

There were no hard feelings, with Duane telling TV Line that he felt he had "the best exit". He made his final appearance on the show in 2018 and, just a year later in 2019, he landed himself a role in the blockbuster superhero flick Captain Marvel.

MORE: What are the cast of NCIS's net worths and how much are they paid per episode?

Maria Bello

Jacqueline Sloane became the latest major character to leave the series after it was revealed midway through season 18 that she would be relocating to Afghanistan. While actress Maria Bello has not spoken publicly about her exit, she reportedly only ever signed on to star in three seasons of the show and never planned to stick around. 


Maria Bello played Jack Sloane

According to IMDb, Maria already has a new project in the pipeline; she's set to write and produce a new movie about an all-female military unit called The Woman King. 

Emily Wickersham

Emily Wickersham, who played agent Ellie Bishop announced that she was officially bowing out of the series for good in the season 18 finale, which saw her character head off on a secretive undercover mission.


Emily Wickersham played Ellie Bishop for eight years on the show

It remains unclear why exactly she has chosen to depart the series, but given the fact that the door has been left open for her return in the future, it seems that she's leaving on good terms. It's safe to assume that the 37-year-old actress was just ready to move on from the series and explore other opportunities after spending nearly a decade in the same role.

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The ratings juggernaut that is NCIS has been on the air for an impressive 17 seasons now. Ever since 2003, Special Agent Leroy Jethro Gibbs (Mark Harmon) has been leading a team of highly skilled investigators who solve violent crimes involving Naval and Marine officers. 

Though many major characters have come and gone over the years --  including DiNozzo (Michael Weatherly), Ziva David (Cote de Pablo), and Quinn (Jennifer Espisito) -- the main cast has remained largely the same. Fan favorites like Sloane (Maria Bello), Ducky (David McCallum) and, of course, that irresistible Torres (Wilmer Valderamma) continue to draw in millions of viewers every week to see how they'll save the day. 

However, there's another segment of important NCIS characters who have been an integral part of the show: the guest stars. Many, many actors who are now big A-list stars -- and some who were already huge stars -- have come to play on NCIS; from Sterling K. Brown to Misha Collins to Jamie Lee Curtis, well-known guest stars continue to be part of the show's appeal and legacy. Here are 46 huge stars who appeared on NCIS over the years. Do you remember all their cameos?




NCIS Cast: Real Life Partners 2020 Revealed! - ⭐OSSA

‘NCIS’ Adds Gary Cole & Katrina Law For Season 19 As Mark Harmon Scales Back & Emily Wickersham Exits CBS Drama

CBS’ venerable drama series NCIS is adding two new series regular cast members for the upcoming 19th season, Gary Cole and Katrina Law.

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Cole will play a new character, FBI Special Agent Alden Park. Law plays Special Agent Jessica Knight. She was introduced in the last two episodes of Season 18 as a recurring guest star with an option to become a series regular if the show got renewed, which it did. Knight is a formidable REACT (Regional Enforcement Action Capabilities Training Team) agent who specializes in hostage negotiations and handles daily high-risk operations with skill and precision. Sharp, athletic and tough, she is fiercely tenacious and with a wry sense of humor.

Details about Cole’s character, Special Agent Park, are not being released. He is not replacing Mark Harmon’s Special Agent Gibbs though Cole is expected to help fill the void left by Harmon’s reduced on-screen presence next season. The number of episodes Harmon will be doing in Season 19 has not been revealed; they are believed to be just a handful.

“We take it year by year with Mark, we’d love to have him as long as he’d like to be here,” CBS President Kelly Kahl told Deadline last month. “Even in this past season, he might have been light in a couple of [episodes], so we’re happy to work around his schedule.”

Law’s promotion follows the recent exit of longtime series regular Emily Wickersham. She and Cole are joining NCIS as broadcast’s most watched scripted series is preparing to leave its Tuesday 8 PM slot for the first time to relocate to Monday in the fall.

“We haven’t shot a single frame quite yet, but with the addition of Gary Cole and Katrina Law to the cast, this is already shaping up to be one of the best seasons yet,” NCIS executive producer/showrunner Steven D. Binder said. “Going into season 19, we are excited to have new characters and stories to tell that adds to and reenergizes the world we’ve come to love over the 400+ episodes.”

Returning cast members include Harmon, Sean Murray, Wilmer Valderrama, Brian Dietzen, Diona Reasonover, Rocky Carroll and David McCallum. NCIS is produced by Bellisarius Productions in association with CBS Studios. Executive producing alongside Binder and Harmon are Chas. Floyd Johnson, Mark Horowitz, Scott Williams, David North and Donald P. Bellisario.

Cole was most recently a series regular on the ABC comedy series Mixed-ish, which ran for two seasons. Prior to that, he co-starred on HBO’s Emmy-winning comedy Veep, for which he has received an Emmy nomination. He also can be seen recurring opposite Christine Baranski on Paramount+’s The Good Fight. Cole is repped by Gersh and Envoy Entertainment.

Law just wrapped the Hallmark movie A Family Through Christmas, in which she plays the lead. She was recently seen as Quinn Lue on Hawaii Five-O. Her previous credits also include The Oath and the CW’s Arrow. Law was a series regular on CBS’ Training Day and played Mira in Starz’s series Spartacus: Blood and Sand and Spartacus: Vengeance. She’s repped by David Lederman at Innovative Artists and Joel Stevens Entertainment.

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‘NCIS’: Who Are the Original Cast Members?

Which NCISstars are considered original cast? Who appeared in the first episode “Yankee White“?

The pilot first aired on September 23, 2003. Surprisingly, there were only four season regulars featured in the pilot episode of the show. Mark Harmon’s Gibbs was obviously the lead. Abby Sciuto (Pauley Perrette), Michael Weatherly (Tony DiNozzo), David McCallum (Dr. Donald Mallard), and Sasha Alexander (Caitlin Todd) also appeared.

Other characters guest-starred in the episode like Joe Spano as T.C. Fornell and Gerry Becker as Agent William Baer.

Most fans may think that Sean Murray, a.k.a Special Agent Timothy McGee is a regular. He’s close to it. He was a guest star during the Season 1 seventh episode, “Sub Rosa.” By the end of the season, he was promoted to a series regular.

Meanwhile, Palmer, played by Brian Dietzen, made his first appearance on Season 1 Episode 21, “Split Decision.” 

Which Cast Members Are Left?

Unfortunately, only two original cast members remain on the show today. NCISis approaching its nineteenth season on-air. Harmon and McCallum are the only two true remaining originals left on the series.

Alexander’s character was killed during Season 2. The “Twilight” episode shocked fans by her sudden exit. Perrette left the show in 2018 after fifteen seasons. Finally, Weatherly famously departed the show in He signed on to lead his own legal drama on CBS, Bull.

The Original Three ‘NCIS’ Pilots

Believe it or not, NCIS had shot three different pilot episodes. Fans who paid close attention to the show’s introduction could figure out how this happened.

The show was a spinoff of the legal courtroom drama, JAG. For the first thirteen seasons, the opening credits featured a scene from an episode of JAG. The few-second clip featured a car driving. The scene was from the “Ice Queen” episode. “Ice Queen” was going to act as the official NCIS crossover. JAG also attempted the crossover with another episode “Meltdown.”

Instead of choosing, they took both episodes and created a single pilot episode out of them. It turned into the JAG episode entitled, “NCIS: The Beginning.” The crossover we’ve been waiting for which finally came to fruition.

Creators called the two episodes the “two-part backdoor pilot” for the series. The episodes did standalone air in 2003 during Season 8 as episodes 20 and 21 of JAG.

Robyn Lively (Vivian Blackadder), Alan Date (Thomas Morrow), Zoe McLellan (Jennifer Coates), Faran Tahir (Amad Bin Atwa) also guest-starred in the two episodes.

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