NCIS has officially filled the voiD left by Ziva (Cote de Pablo).
Though she's yet to make her debut on CBS' hit drama, Emily Wickersham has been promoted to series regular, the network announced on Monday. "Emily Wickersham's Ellie Bishop is proving to perfectly compliment the NCIS team," executive producer Gary Glasberg said in a statement. "Her energy and enthusiasm is contagious. Great things are planned for Bishop and we couldn't be more thrilled to have her on-board."
Cast in September for a three-episode arc as Bishop, a new agent who is described as "bright, educated, athletic, attractive, fresh-faced, focused and somewhat socially awkward," Wickersham was believed to be Pablo's replacement as the series' new female lead. Guess there's no question about that now!
Wickersham will make her NCIS debut on the Nov. 19 episode when Bishop, who is "a mysterious mixture of analytic brilliance, fierce determination and idealism," works with Gibbs (Mark Harmon) and the gang to determine who bugged the Secretary of the Navy during a confidential briefing, a breach she predicted a few years ago during a threat analysis.
Prior to landing the role of Bishop on NCIS, Wickersham was known for her work on The Sopranos' final season as Rhiannon, A.J.'s girlfriend. She recently had a recurring role on the first season of FX's The Bridge.
After announcing she would be exiting the series in July, Pablo's character Ziva made her final goodbye in the second episode of the season.
In an interview, Pablo (kind of) opened up about her decision to leave NCIS. "As far as my decision to leave, that's a personal thing, and I'd rather leave it at that," she said. "The idea of leaving was not something I toyed around with for a long time. It was an overwhelmingly hard thing—at times terrifying." She added, "I left under my terms, and that was wonderful."
However, NCIS fans could see Ziva again as Pablo revealed she's open to returning to the show in the future. "The greatest thing about this last episode is that Ziva doesn't die," she said. "As long as a character doesn't die, the character can always come back. Not that it would actually matter, because we bring back characters from the dead all the time on NCIS!"