CBS’ NCIS is losing mainstay Pauley Perrette, who has been with the series for all 15 seasons since it launched in 2003. The actress took to Twitter Wednesday morning to make the announcement.
Perrette stresses that the decision was her own and that their is no bad blood between her and the network whatsoever. “I love her as much as you do,” Perrette said about her delightfully stranger character, forensic scientist Abby Sciuto.
Surprisingly, Perrette is one of America’s most beloved actresses, according to the Q Scores Company which measures the familiarity and appeal of public figures to general Americans. In a collaborative study with TheWrap, Perrette ranked No. 1 among female leads on broadcast television with a 47 Positive Q Score, 10 points ahead of the No. 2 tie between Viola Davis and Taraji P. Henson. That’s damn good company as the pair have one Oscar win and three nominations between them.
Perrette has appeared in all of NCIS‘ 331 episodes to-date. That’s a lot of episodes. Normally, stars start seeing serious royalties around the 100-episode mark, so Perrette has made a pretty penny from her time on the small screen. In fact, Forbes estimates that she earns roughly $6 million per year, so she certainly has the leeway to focus on other endeavors at this point.
Given that the decision was made last year, the show’s move to bring in Maria Bello for season 15 makes more sense.