The Whereabouts of Former NCIS Actors
As a spinoff of JAG, NCIS delivers engaging storylines with the help of an ever-growing cast of characters. The series follows a group of agents led by Leroy Jethro Gibbs. The show itself opened the doors to spinoff series NCIS: Los Angeles and NCIS: New Orleans.
With a show of this caliber, many actors come and go as their characters leave. Take a look at the whereabouts of a select group of actors who’ve left their mark on the franchise — spoilers included.
In the first two seasons, Sasha Alexander portrayed agent Caitlin Todd. The actress decided to leave the series due to fatigue. While Todd died in the season two finale, “Twilight,” Alexander returned for the season three episode “Kill Ari (Part II)” and the season eight episode “A Man Walks Into a Bar…”
Since officially leaving the show, Alexander found success on Rizzoli & Isles. Her portrayal of Dr. Maura Isles earned her a People’s Choice Award for Favorite Cable TV Actress in 2016. Alexander also had a recurring role as Helene Runyon on the hit Showtime series Shameless.
Michael Weatherly portrayed senior field agent Anthony DiNozzo. The actor was reluctant to join the show, but a dinner with creator Donald Bellisario changed his mind. “His personality, his storytelling and his presence and everything kind of won me over,” he told The Futon Critic.
After 13 seasons, Weatherly left the show in 2016. Shortly after leaving, he landed the title role in CBS’s drama Bull. In the show, he portrays psychologist Jason Bull, who runs a jury consulting firm called Trial Analysis Corporation. This is his first lead role in any TV series.
Pauley Perrette won fans over as forensic scientist Abby Sciuto. One of Abby’s most recognizable features is her spider tattoo. For Perrette, wearing a fake tattoo was uncomfortable. “It only takes a few minutes to do, but it feels like old chewing gum,” the actress told Buddy TV.
After 15 seasons, Perrette bid farewell to the series in 2018. The following year, she took the lead role in CBS’s sitcom Broke. The show follows a wife having to move into her sister’s (Natasha Leggero) place with her husband (Jaime Camil).
In season 14, Jennifer Esposito joined the show as special agent Alexandra Quinn. Her stint only lasted one season; Quinn left the team to take care of her mother. “I could not have asked for a better opportunity than to work with the NCIS cast and producers,” the actress told Deadline.
After leaving the show, Esposito went back to movies with 2018’s Speed Kills and 2019’s Mary. The actress also had a recurring role on the hit Amazon series The Boys. In the show, she plays CIA deputy director Susan Raynor.
In season 13, Duane Henry arrived as British MI6 Intelligence Officer Clayton Reeves. The next season found Henry getting a main-cast upgrade. Reeves died in the season 13 episode “One Step Forward.” His death led to Abby leaving the field and starting a charity in his name.
After a three-season run, Henry took part in Marvel Studios’ hit film Captain Marvel. In the movie, he portrays a Talos-Kree soldier. He also appeared on a couple episodes of What Just Happened??! with Fred Savage.
In season three, Lauren Holly arrived as the new NCIS director Jennifer “Jenny” Shepard. During her time as director, her illness caused concern among the team. In the season five episode “Judgment Day (Pt. 1),” Shepard dies from severe injuries after a battle with assassins.
Since leaving the show, Holly found herself on the main cast of CTV’s police drama Motive. The actress also took part in the Hallmark films A Country Wedding and My Summer Prince. In 2019, she landed the recurring role of Mars Harper’s wife Lynn in Designated Survivor.
Troian Avery Bellisario
In season two, Troian Avery Bellisario entered the series as Timothy McGee’s sister Sarah. In real life, she’s the stepsister of Timothy McGee actor Sean Murray. Her time on the show only lasted two episodes. Fans didn’t see her again after the season four episode “Twisted Metal.”
Four years after leaving NCIS, Bellisario landed her biggest role to date as Spencer Hastings on Pretty Little Liars. The hit series earned the actress two Teen Choice Awards for Choice Summer TV Star: Female. She also took on the role of director on episodes of Pretty Little Liars and Good Trouble.
Mary Mouser was the first actress to portray Gibbs’ daughter Kelly, who died in a car crash. The actress was replaced after leaving in season four, but she returned in season eight. Mouser’s last appearance in the show was in the season seven episode “Mother’s Day.”
In recent years, Mouser has held recurring roles on The Fosters and Scandal. In 2018, she landed the role of Samantha LaRusso in YouTube’s hit series Cobra Kai, which continues the Karate Kid franchise. The third season of the series is set for release in 2020.
Darby Stanchfield portrayed Leroy Jethro Gibbs’ wife Shannon in flashbacks. Her first appearance was in the 2006 episode “Hiatus (Part 1).” Along with her daughter Kelly, Shannon was killed when drug dealer Pedro Hernandez forced their car to crash. Her last appearance on the show was in a season 12 episode, “The Lost Boys.”
During her NCIS run, Stanchfield landed the role of Abby Whelan in ABC’s hit drama Scandal. The actress made her directorial debut on the show via the web series Gladiator Wanted. Stanchfield can be seen in Netflix’s supernatural horror series Locke & Key.
In season nine, Melinda McGraw delivered Leroy Jethro Gibbs’ ex-wife Diane Sterling to the mix. After working with the IRS for years, she landed a position in the IRS’s Criminal Investigation Division. Sterling died similarly to agent Caitlin Todd in the season 12 episode “Check.”
After her character’s death, McGraw gained recurring roles on Crisis and State of Affairs. In 2016, she landed the role of Patricia MacCready in Cinemax’s horror series Outcast. And, she can be seen on CBS All Access’ crime series Interrogation as Faith Turner.
During season seven, Rena Sofer arrived as attorney Margaret Allison Hart. While Hart was sent to be a thorn in Gibbs’ side, she instead fell in love with him. Sofer’s last appearance was the season seven finale “Rule Fifty-One.” In the season eight premiere “Spider and the Fly,” viewers learned about Hart’s resignation from NCIS.
Three years after leaving NCIS, Sofer landed her current role as Quinn Fuller on The Bold and the Beautiful. This marked her return to soap operas after exiting General Hospital in 1997. The actress’ time on General Hospital earned her a Daytime Emmy in 1996.
Paula Newsome made her NCIS debut in the season six episode “Knockout” as Leon Vance’s wife Jackie. The loving couple first met during a University of Maryland basketball game. Their love blossomed, ultimately resulting in two children. Jackie died in surgery in the season 10 episode “Shabbat Shalom.”
Newsome continued finding work in television with recurring gigs on Suburgatory, No Tomorrow and Transparent. Her biggest recurring roles came with HBO’s Barry and NBC’s Chicago Med. She also appeared in the films Starving in Suburbia and Revival.
In season nine, Matt Jones brought character Ned Dorneget to the NCIS universe. The character started out working at the evidence locker before becoming an official agent. In the season 12 episode “The Lost Boys,” Dorneget is killed in a bomb attack.
Jones is best known for his role as Baxter on CBS’s sitcom Mom. The actor’s stint on the show diminished to a special-guest slot by season five. In 2019, he starred in another CBS sitcom, Bob Hearts Abishola. Jones also landed the role of Wedge in Final Fantasy VII.
In season nine, Scott Wolf portrayed Jonathan Cole, who also used the alias of FBI agent Casey Stratton. His mission was to take out as many NCIS agents as possible. In the season nine finale “Till Death Do Us Part,” Cole is killed while trying to defuse a bomb.
After his NCIS stint, Wolf was on the main cast of Kaijudo, Perception and The Night Shift. The actor also played himself in an episode of Netflix’s BoJack Horseman. Wolf portrays Carson Drew in The CW mystery-drama Nancy Drew.
Robert Patrick portrayed Colonel Merton Bell in season seven. Bell’s hatred for Gibbs led him to send henchmen to attempt to take out Mike Franks. While Patrick only appeared in the episode “Outlaws and In-Laws,” the character had a plethora of offscreen action throughout the season.
Following NCIS, Patrick gained notable recurring roles on True Blood and Sons of Anarchy. In 2014, he returned to CBS for the hit drama Scorpion, which found him portraying agent Cabe Gallo. The actor is also working on the films What Josiah Saw and The Frat Haze.
In the season eight episode “A Man Walks Into a Bar…,” Wendy Makkena debuted as Caitlin Todd’s older sister Rachel Cranston. Because of her work as a psychologist, Cranston was given the nickname “Dr. Kate’s Sister.” Her last appearance was in the season 11 episode “Double Back.”
Following NCIS, Makkena reunited with co-star Sasha Alexander on an episode of Rizzoli & Isles. In 2019, the actress portrayed Andrea Vogel’s second wife Dorothy in A Beautiful Day in the Neighborhood. In the same year, she had another NCIS reunion with Michael Weatherly in Bull.
In season 12, Jamie Bamber appeared as Ellie Bishop’s husband Jake Malloy. Their relationship, however, began to deteriorate over time. Things got bumpy when Jake revealed he had an affair. His last appearance was in season 13’s “Spinning Wheel,” which found the couple announcing their divorce.
One year after leaving the show, Bamber landed the role of detective Tim Williamson on the British TV show Marcella. The show is one of the most popular series on ITV, with 6 million viewers. Bamber also took recurring roles on The Messengers and Fearless.
Alan Dale arrived in the first season as NCIS director Thomas Morrow. The season three premiere “Kill Ari (Part I)” finds Morrow vacating his title to work for the Department of Homeland Security. In the season 13 episode “Return to Sender,” Morrow died from a sniper attack.
After leaving the show, Dale landed the recurring role as Australian Prime Minister Martin Toohey in Secret City‘s first season. He also reprised his role as Jim Robinson in the Australian soap opera Neighbours. Since 2017, he’s been portraying Joseph Anders on the hit CW drama Dynasty.
In season 10, Colin Hanks showed up as Department of Defense investigator Richard Parsons. The character originally had a vendetta against Gibbs until the agent defended him in battle. His last appearance was in the season 10 episode “Whiskey Tango Foxtrot.”
Following NCIS, Hanks earned Emmy and Golden Globe nominations for his work on FX’s Fargo. In 2017, he portrayed the adult version of Alex Vreeke. He reprised the role for the 2019 sequel Jumanji: The Next Level. Since 2014, Hanks has been the voice of Talking Tom in the animated series Talking Tom and Friends.
Joel Gretsch arrived on the series as agent Stan Burley during season one. The character was an old partner of Gibbs before DiNozzo stepped in. Following the season, Burley vanished until the season nine episode “Playing With Fire.” His last appearance was in the season 13 episode “Saviors.”
In 2016, Gretsch landed the role of Peter Maxwell in The Vampire Diaries. The following year, he appeared in the film Dead Trigger, which starred Dolph Lundgren. Gretsch gave made-for-TV movies some love in 2018’s Do Unto Others and A Father’s Nightmare.
In season one, Jessica Steen arrived as criminal profiler Paula Cassidy. The profiler had a fling with DiNozzo, but the two called it quits in season two. In season four’s episode “Grace Period,” Cassidy sacrificed herself to protect the team.
Since 2007, Steen has been portraying Fairfield Stables owner Lisa Stillman on the Canadian drama Heartland. Outside of Heartland, the actress has held recurring roles on Flashpoint, Republic of Doyle and Bullet in the Face. Her last appearance on primetime TV in the U.S. was in a 2018 episode of Grey’s Anatomy.
Tamara Taylor first portrayed special agent Cassie Yates in the season two episode “SWAK.” The character learned her moves from late special agent Chris Pacci. The character appeared again in the season three episode “Jeopardy.” In the episode, she helped the team save then-NCIS director Jennifer Shepard from a hostage situation.
Taylor landed her biggest role to date as Dr. Camille Saroyan in Fox’s hit drama Bones. In 2018, she gained the recurring role of Oumou Prescott in Netflix’s Altered Carbon. Taylor returned to the streaming service for 2020’s October Faction.
Muse Watson made his debut as Gibbs’ former mentor Mike Franks in the season three episode “Hiatus (Part 1).” In the season eight episode “Swan Song,” Franks was killed outside of Gibbs’ home. His last appearance (in flashback form) was in the season 15 episode “Voices.”
After leaving in 2017, Watson began working on the films Jubilee and Christian Movie. The actor also started working on the TV miniseries Diary of a Lunatic, which stars Failed First Dates actor Bryan Patrick Stoyle.
Jonathan LaPaglia debuted as agent Brent Langer in the season five episode “Tribes.” In the episode, Langer helps the team hunt a terrorist recruiter. Unfortunately, the character was killed by agent Michelle Lee in the season six episode “Last Man Standing.” Langer was taken down because he learned about Lee being a mole in the team.
LaPaglia continued his primetime stint with the recurring role of Curtis Bell on Cold Case. In 2016, he became the official host of Australian Survivor. In 2019, he portrayed pit engineer Eddie in the hit film Ford v Ferrari.
Diane Neal made her debut as special agent Abigail Borin in the season seven episode “Jurisdiction.” Before being an agent, Borin toured Iraq as a sergeant. The character jumped to the spinoff NCIS: New Orleans for her final on-screen appearances.
In 2015, Neal landed the recurring role of Lisa Campbell on Fox’s crime thriller The Following before retiring from acting. She decided to focus her attention on politics. In 2018, she ran for the U.S. House of Representatives in New York’s 19th congressional district, but she only earned 1% of the vote.
Marisol Nichols played agent Zoe Keates in the season 12 episode “Parental Guidance Suggested.” The character begins a relationship with DiNozzo, who worked with her at the Philadelphia Police Department. Her last appearance was season 12’s “No Good Deed.” In season 13, Keates’ breakup with DiNozzo came to light.
After NCIS, Nichols turned to teen dramas. In 2015, she appeared on Teen Wolf as The Desert Wolf. Since 2017, she’s been portraying Veronica Lodge’s mother Hermione on The CW’s Riverdale. She also plans to join the Saw franchise in the film The Organ Donor.
In season 14’s episode “What Lies Above,” French Stewart portrayed murderer Paul Triff, and his last appearance was in the season 15 episode “Keep Your Enemies Closer.” In this episode, Triff was allowed to live in his own home in exchange for information on his former cellmate. During this time, Triff was locked in a cage.
After his brief NCIS stint, Stewart had minor appearances on Trial & Error, Roseanne and No Good Nick. Since 2013, he’s been portraying Chef Rudy on the CBS sitcom Mom. Stewart is also appearing in the films Never Too Late and A Fall From Grace.
Richard Schiff portrayed businessman Harper Dearing in season nine. Dearing wanted to avenge his son’s death by attacking the Navy and planted a bomb at the NCIS headquarters, which led to a standoff with Gibbs. Schiff died at the hands of Gibbs in the season 10 premiere “Extreme Prejudice.”
In 2015, Schiff gained recurring roles on Audience Network’s Rogue, Showtime’s The Affair and HBO’s Ballers. Since 2017, he’s been portraying Dr. Aaron Glassman on the CBS medical drama The Good Doctor.
Jamie Lee Curtis
In season nine, Jamie Lee Curtis was introduced as PsyOps director Samantha Ryan. The character was romantically involved with Gibbs, which led to some speculation from the team. Curtis ended her five-episode stint on the series with season nine’s finale, “Till Death Do Us Part.”
After the show, Curtis made the jump to Fox for a recurring stint on New Girl and a main cast role on Scream Queens. In 2018, she reprised her iconic role of Laurie Strode in the Halloween reboot. The actress continues the horror goodness with 2020’s Halloween Kills and 2021’s Halloween Ends.
In season seven, Meredith Eaton appeared as Carol Wilson. On the show, the immunologist was great friends with Abby. Eaton also portrayed the character in a 2014 episode of NCIS: New Orleans. When officers found someone dead from the bubonic plague, Wilson got the call.
After NCIS: New Orleans, Eaton had a recurring role on the CBS drama Battle Creek. Her loyalty to the network continued with her portrayal of Matilda “Matty” Webber on the hit reboot of MacGyver. The actress made history by being the first person with dwarfism on primetime TV with CBS’s Family Law.