With the NCIS Season 11 premiere less than two weeks away, the one thing that fans can’t stop talking about is the departure of Ziva. Executive producer Gary Glasberg decided to address the “elephant in the room” in an open letter to fans about what her exit will mean to the show. 

Ziva’s Departure: Not Part of the Plan

In the letter, Glasberg opens with what he had planned to do this summer, and none of it included dealing with the loss of one of his biggest stars. 

“That was quite a summer,” the letter begins. “I had planned on picnics, barbecues and weekend staycations. I did not plan on the departure of Ziva David.”

Glasberg goes on in the letter to reassure fans that Ziva’s exit will be handled with the “utmost care and delicacy” and they are “doing some really terrific work and feeling confident about moving forward.”

Glasberg’s letter also included a nice “Thank you” to show’s loyal fans. “Let me start by saying, ‘Thank you.’ We genuinely appreciate your letters and emails,” Glasberg said. 

Change Happens

The EP then went on to talk about how they were just as shocked as everyone else about Cote de Pablo‘s decision. “I know Cote’s decision was a shock to everybody. Us, too,” Glasberg said. “But we need everyone to remember that, in addition to being a professional family, we’re a television show, and change happens. Writers move on. Actors move on. Life, for some, interferes with work and then we rise to the occasion and adapt. Very often, extraordinary creativity comes out of adjustment. And so we find ourselves not dwelling on the past, but eager to guide you into the future of NCIS. Eager to show you that Season 11 can be a rollercoaster ride of new stories. Eager to share our excitement and enthusiasm of what’s to come.”

A Moment in Television History

Glasberg talked about how much the people behind the show respect de Pablo’s decision. “Like I’ve said multiple times, we respect Cote’s decision immensely and wish her all the best.”

He also promised fans that the end of the story will be ground-breaking for the show. “The amazing resolution you’re going to see is pretty damn heart-wrenching and we’re incredibly proud of it, Glasberg teased. “Prepare yourselves for a moment in television history. Images that will end up in the archives. I couldn’t be happier with how my NCIS family stepped up and did some of the most emotional work we’ve ever done.”

It’s Okay to Be Sad

He also acknowledged how hard it will be for everyone to let Ziva go. “Watch with us. Experience with us. It’s okay to be sad,” Glasberg said. “But, then, don’t forget what we’re good at. We like to make you smile. We like to rock your world and leave you on the edge of your seat. We like to show you what the greatest team of federal agents is capable of. And all of that will happen in Season 11. And, as you’ve come to expect with me, there will be some surprises along the way.”

Many Great Moments to Come

Glasberg also promised fans that there are many more good stories to come. “In addition to starting off with Ziva’s departure, plan on going back to Baltimore again with Tony,” Glasberg teased. “Plan on learning more about his past and his views of the future. Meet some other agents, different fun characters, as they pass through our world in funny and fascinating ways. Watch Gibbs connect with his father, Jackson, in a memorable and extraordinary story of bravery and valor. Experience a stronger Vance bounce back from tragedy and move on with strength and compassion. Watch Abby call on good friends to solve a challenging mystery. See the boundaries of Ducky and Jimmy’s relationship pushed as they face complicated decisions. And, on a lighter note, Tweeters will enjoy watching McGee explain to Gibbs what a ‘hashtag’ is.”

Grab Your Gear

At the end of the letter, Glasberg gave fans one finale message. 

“We’re enormously proud of what we’re doing and what we’re planning. We can’t wait to share it with you, so strap in and get ready for the ride. Grab your gear. Here we go.”

What did you think of Gary Glasberg’s open letter? Has it changed your opinion about the upcoming season of NCIS or the departure of Ziva?

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Image courtesy of CBS

Michelle Carlbert

Contributing Writer, BuddyTV