NCIS could be facing more casting changes in the wake of Pauley Perrette and Mark Harmon’s epic feud. With David McCallum appearing less and less on the show, fans are worried that Donald “Ducky” Mallard will be the next character to go.
McCallum has not commented on his future on NCIS, but he only agreed to return in Season 16 if producers gave him a lighter workload.
According to Cheat Sheet, the actor wanted to spend less time on the set and more time with his family, including his wife and grandchildren. That is one reason why his character has not been as involved this season.
But with retirement on the horizon, it is possible that McCallum calls it quits and opts to leave after Season 16.
The show has already hinted that Ducky’s days are numbered. In a recent episode, there was talk that Ducky wanted to “see more of the world,” which only fueled his ext rumors even more.
McCallum has been a part of the show from the very beginning and would be losing a lot if he walked away. Along with being a part of a successful franchise, McCallum is pulling down at least $100,000 per episode, probably more.
Harmon is currently taking home an estimated $525,000 per installment, while Perrette made $175,000 per episode before she left last season.
Perrette’s exit came amid reports of a nasty feud between her and Harmon. Their beef allegedly started after Harmon brought an aggressive dog to the set of the show. Harmon’s pet reportedly bit a crew member, but he continued to bring the dog to work. Perrette’s row with Harmon started after she mentioned that people were uncomfortable with the situation.
Their feud escalated from there, with Perrette refusing to film scenes with Harmon until she finally decided to leave the show for good.
Like McCallum, Pauley Perrette was a mainstay on the show and had been a part of the drama since the start.
New episodes of NCIS air Tuesday nights on CBS.