Former NCIS star Mark Harmon has made a fresh comment about whether or not he would return to the long-running CBS show as Leroy Jethro Gibbs.
In a new interview with Entertainment Tonight, the 72-year-old actor didn’t rule out an appearance, and pondered about what his character would be doing now.
“He’s [Leroy] probably sitting in a stream up in Alaska fishing,” he said, adding: “Is he going to get out of the stream? I don’t know. But if he is, I don’t know about it.”
Since leaving the drama in 2021, Mark has spoken about the reasons behind his exit, while his former co-stars and colleagues have addressed his potential return. Read on to find out everything that’s been said.
After leaving the show in season 19, Mark opened up about his departure in the DVD release.
“What has always drawn me here is the character I play and to keep it fresh and to keep it challenging,” he explained, before making it clear that Leroy is “not retired”.
“The character is living in Alaska as far as I know,” he said before adding that he was happy with how his departure was handled. “Plot-wise, this character has taken the path that it did.”
At the time of Mark’s exit, showrunner Steve Binder shared a statement hinting at a future return. “As an executive producer and dear friend, Mark continues to be an integral part of the fabric of the show,” he said. “So regarding the future of Gibbs, as long-time fans of the show may have noticed over the years… never count Leroy Jethro Gibbs out.”
Meanwhile, former CBS President Kelly Kahl said that fans would just have to “see how it plays out” in regards to Mark’s comeback. Speaking to Deadline in 2021, she explained: “Mark’s always been part of the show, Mark’s always going to be part of the show. In terms of his on-air appearances, we’re just going to have to see how it plays out going forward.”
Earlier this year, it was reported that Mark was on the fence about returning to the drama. The actor seemingly put these rumors to rest in his latest interview, in which he explained that if Leroy is planning to leave Alaska anytime soon, he doesn’t know about it.
His former co-stars and colleagues seem more confident about Mark’s return, however.
Earlier this year, Rocky Carroll, who plays Leon Vance, told TV Line: “We might see Gibbs again. I think as long as this show stays on the air, there will always be a little bit of a tease that we might see Gibbs again.”
The actor added: “Gibbs is the moral compass. He’s the moral compass that we all wish we had.”
Similarly, Sean Murray, who portrays Timothy McGee, previously said that he “truly believes” Leroy Gibbs could “pop up somewhere”. “I really believe that there’s a possibility of that happening,” he told Parade last year.
It looks like fans will just have to wait and see what happens, but we’ve got our fingers crossed!