Unveiling the True Reason ‘NCIS’ Retained Mark Harmon in Opening Credits for 11 Months

Why didn’t the showrunners of ‘NCIS’ remove Mark Harmon’s name from the opening credits as soon as he departed the show? According to the executive producer, here’s why.

NCIS fans never wanted to see Mark Harmon, who played Leroy Jethro Gibbs, leave the show. From the first season, Harmon was a mainstay as Gibbs.

While the series left the door open for his eventual comeback, no definite plans to bring him back have been announced. Despite Harmon’s definitive departure from the show, NCIS showrunners didn’t remove him from the opening credits for nearly a year. This is why.

Why didn’t ‘NCIS’ delete Mark Harmon’s name from the credits right away?

Mark Harmon portrayed Leroy Jethro Gibbs in NCIS for 19 seasons before retiring. Fans adored the character and were concerned about the show’s survival without him.

And it appeared that the NCIS showrunners did not want to say goodbye to Gibbs right away. It took them 11 months to remove Harmon from the show’s opening credits.

Fans will recall how the show ended with Gibbs. Gibbs made the decision to stay in Naktok Bay, Alaska, and leave the rest of the NCIS crew behind in season 19 episode 4.

He came to terms with his family’s loss and now appears to live in Alaska – albeit, of course, he does so off-screen.

So, what’s the hold-up in removing Harmon’s name off the credits? Harmon quit the program at the start of Season 19 with 17 episodes remained in the season. The showrunners did not want to update the credits in the middle of the season. They wanted Gibbs to be present in some capacity.

“Gibbs left a huge imprint on the team, and it’ll take more than a year for that to fade,” executive producer Steven D. Binder told TV Insider. “I don’t want it to fade because then I won’t be able to have Gibbs.” I still appreciate his presence in there.”

Furthermore, according to Binder, the showrunners just did not want to deal with the difficulties of removing Harmon from the credits at the time.

That was due to the fact that, while the season had ended and Mark would not have featured in any more episodes, “that was not a decided thing, so he remained in the credits because we didn’t k1ll him,” he explained. ” … It didn’t end up that way for no other reason than it was a particularly trying season, and it would have been yet another thing to do to make it happen.

When Season 20 arrived, the showrunners chose to replace Harmon with Timothy McGee actor Sean Murray.

Why did the actor who played Leroy Jethro Gibbs leave the series?

Fans are looking forward to the 2024 season of NCIS with or without Mark Harmon, but we all wish he was still on the show. So, what made the Leroy Jethro Gibbs actor decide to step down? According to executive producer Charles Floyd Johnson, age and other responsibilities took precedence.

Coming in at 6:30 a.m. five days a week and being the cornerstone — that’s fairly challenging, and he did it for 18 seasons,” Johnson remarked. “He had just passed the 70-year-old mark and wanted to spend time with [wife] Pam [Dawber] and his children.” So he was preparing for it. It definitely started [with him dropping hints] around the 15th or 16th season. But he was so devoted to that staff and to the show. He was really pleased of it, and he remained longer than he had planned.

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