NCIS Stars Offer Update on Tony & Ziva Spinoff

Cote de Pablo and Michael Weatherly reveal what they think the NCIS spinoff should have been called.

Fan-favorite NCIS characters Tony DiNozzo and Ziva David are getting their own spinoff on Paramount+, NCIS; Tony & Ziva and with production on the series soon to begin in Europe, stars Michael Weatherly and Cote de Pablo are talking about the eagerly anticipated spinoff. During an appearance at the Monte Carlo TV Festival (via Deadline), the pair spoke about how the series will try to address the various fan questions about the "Tiva" couple after their departure from the main NCIS series — as well as what Weatherly thinks the series really should have been called.

"It was always like, 'whatever happened to Tony and Ziva, do you think they'll ever get back together, where are they?' And all of a sudden, we had the opportunity to put it together into a show," de Pablo said. "We're trying to address all of these questions, and the idea of trust, and how they move forward… they're trying to make things work while also parenting and having a lot of challenges thrown at them."

Weatherly also addressed Tony and Ziva's daughter, Tali, explaining that the character will play such an important role in the series that he felt like the series should have been called Tony, Ziva & Tali.

"Every choice that Tony and Ziva have to make in their adventure, their child is first and foremost in the front of their mind," Weatherly said. "When we were on the NCIS mothership, we didn't have children. When you have a child, you have to navigate what is best for them. And then maybe you have a co-parent that you have a tumultuous relationship with… and oh, wait, we have to save the world."

Weatherly also explained that the spinoff won't have the same structure as NCIS in that it's not a procedural.

"It's not an evergreen, procedural, it's not structured the same way," he said.

What is NCIS: Tony & Ziva About?

NCIS: Tony & Ziva will center around Tony DiNozzo (Weatherly) and Ziva David (de Pablo) who fans last saw reunited in Paris along with their daughter, Tali, in the NCIS Season 16 finale — Ziva left the team in Season 11 and was believed dead, though that ended up not being the case. The spinoff will open on the family, but "when Tony's security company is attacked, they must go on the run across Europe, try to figure out who is after them and maybe even learn to trust each other again so that they can finally have their unconventional happily ever after."

"We've been talking about this story for many years, and now with John McNamara at the helm, we are ready," Weatherly and de Pablo said in a statement when the series was announced. "The world of Tony and Ziva (and daughter Tali) promises to be an action-packed roller coaster fueled by love, danger, tears, and laughter. We also want to acknowledge and thank the fans from around the world who supported the 'TIVA' movement for years. To this day, they say hello in grocery stores and on the street to tell us how much these characters mean to them and ask what Tony and Ziva are up to now. This is for you." 

A NCIS Prequel is Also in the Works

In addition to NCIS: Tony & Ziva, there is another expansion to the NCIS universe in the making.  It was also previously announced that CBS is set to debut a prequel, NCIS: Origins, this fall. The series will follow Leroy Jethro Gibbs, played by Mark Harmon in NCIS, as he "starts his career as a newly minted special agent at the fledgling NCIS Camp Pendleton office where he forges his place on a gritty, ragtag team led by NCIS legend Mike Franks."

The prequel series will see Harmon return as narrator and will star Austin Stowell as Special Agent Gibbs, Mariel Molino as Special Agent Lala Dominguez, Kyl Schmid as Mike Franks, and Tyla Abercrombie as Field Operations Support Officer Mary Jo Sullivan.