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Cote de Pablo left 'NCIS' of her own volition, per CBS

"NCIS' " Ziva (Cote de Pablo) and Tony

"NCIS' " Ziva (Cote de Pablo) and Tony (Michael Weatherly) share a moment and then things get bad in a hurry. Credit: CBS

Beverly Hills -- Attention, all you Cote de Pablo fans who have been sending me (and a few hundred other TV writers)  emails begging to ask/pester CBS chief executive Leslie Moonves why she was dropped from "NCIS." (de Pablo will actually leave after a few episodes next season, or will be "phased out," to use TV argot.

Your wish is my desire -- although someone else asked the question first.

Moonves said she "was offered a lot of money, then offered more money .?.?."  But she waved away both Brink's trucks. So why is she leaving TV's biggest show? I guess we'll have to ask her. But believe it or not, there are apparently some actors who don't have a price tag. Hey, maybe she's got a budding movie ambition, and it's worth noting that TV series -- while vastly lucrative -- can also be golden shackles, especially limiting one's ability to branch out from "character."  I am  mindful of the quip made long ago by Robert Ryan, a brilliant character actor who ignored the lure of TV because he didn't want to be known forever as "Sidewinder Sam."

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