Cote de Pablo put NCIS producers in a panic and fans in distress when she revealed back in July that she’d be leaving the show and her beloved character Ziva David.

Fans of the series have wondered what caused de Pablo to decide to leave the successful procedural drama after eight years as one of the most adored characters on TV. Though the actress remains tight-lipped about the reasons she chose to leave, saying nothing more than that it was “personal,” there’s no doubt that she’s eternally fond of both the show and the people she worked with on it.

“On a September day in New York, I'm looking out my balcony, and I still miss my family," de Pablo told TV Guide, feeling odd not being on NCIS' L.A. set. "But they're with me all the time, every day, and that won't change."

"I'm horrible at saying goodbyes, because I've been saying goodbyes ever since I left my country [Chile] when I was 10, so even though I did not utter the word goodbye, I was able to hug them and let them know how much I loved them,” she added about her last day on set. “And that's all that matters."


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Despite announcing her departure prior to production of NCIS’ 11th season, de Pablo and the producers decided to work together to wrap up Ziva David’s storyline in the first couple episodes of the season. One major arc for Ziva has been her will-they-won’t-they relationship with Tony DiNozzo (Michael Weatherly). “As far as the 'Tiva' fans, they'll get a resolution they've awaited for years," de Pablo revealed. "There is a level of confession. And if it takes a big change like this to stir things up, it's all for the better. I'm a fan of the show!"

De Pablo doesn’t have any current plans for her career – whether her next step is another TV series or a career in film the actress doesn’t know. De Pablo also isn’t sure if making a return to NCIS is out of the question. When talking about NCIS’ Oct. 1 episode, Ziva's goodbye hour, de Pablo leaves the future of the character open. "The greatest thing about this last episode is that Ziva doesn't die," she says.

“As long as a character doesn't die, the character can always come back,” she continued. “Not that it would actually matter, because we bring back characters from the dead all the time on NCIS!"

De Pablo’s final episode on NCIS (at least for awhile) will air Tuesday, Oct. 1 on CBS at 8/7c.

– Chelsea Regan

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For More Cote de Pablo News:

Emily Wickersham To Play Bishop On 'NCIS'; Fills Hole Left By Cote De Pablo’s Departure

Cote De Pablo’s ‘NCIS’ Exit Just ‘Another Change,’ Says Mark Harmon

Cote De Pablo’s 'NCIS' Character Ziva David Will Get An ‘Amazing Resolution,’ Says Producer

Cote De Pablo’s 'NCIS' Character Ziva To Be Replaced By ‘Socially Awkward’ Bishop

Cote De Pablo’s 'NCIS' Exit A Surprise To Costars

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