For 15 years, Pauley Perrette and Mark Harmon portrayed coworkers with an endearing father-daughter relationship on the hit police procedural NCIS. In 2018, however, fans were devastated to learn that Pauley Perrette would not be reprising her role as the beloved Chief Forensic Scientist Abby Sciuto.
As Pauley’s NCIS career was so lengthy, fans assumed that she was leaving to pursue other projects. Very few actors stay with a single series for more than a decade, after all. Pauley Perrette, however, went two years without another project and has only appeared in a single series since her departure from NCIS.
And, sadly, it has since come to light that the loving relationship between Abby Sciuto and Jethro Gibbs (Mark Harmon) was fictional for the last two years of Pauley’s time on the show. Though the duo had once been friends, their relationship devolved into a bitter feud that ended with Pauley’s departure.
The ‘NCIS’ Rift Began With a Dog Bite
For more than a decade, Pauley Perrette and Mark Harmon coexisted happily on the NCIS set. In 2016, however, they began to grow apart. Mark Harmon brought his dog to the set, which then bit a crew member, who needed 15 stitches, according to The Wrap.
The incident caused some discomfort on set, but it was how Harmon handled it that truly caused a rift. Rather than keep his dog from the set, Harmon continued to bring it with him. And because Mark Harmon was not only an NCIS cornerstone but a producer of the show, the cast and crew were reportedly afraid to confront him about it.
Pauley Perrette finally did it herself. Apparently, however, the conversation did not go well. After their discussion about the dog, Pauley and Mark never filmed together again. “She did her scenes on one day and he did his work on other days, and they still produced a great show,” a source shared with The Wrap. “It was simply scheduled that they did not work the same days.”
Pauley Perrette Claimed ‘Multiple Physical Assaults’ Occurred on Set
The source who described Pauley Perrette’s feud with Mark Harmon assured fans that her departure had nothing to do with the dog bite incident. They explained that Pauley was already planning to leave before the falling out with Mark Harmon.
Though she was careful not to divulge any details, Pauley Perrette’s statements following her departure hint at some serious accusations and paint an ugly picture of the NCIS set. “There is a ‘machine’ keeping me silent, and feeding FALSE stories about me,” she wrote on Twitter. “A very rich, very powerful publicity ‘machine’. No morals, no obligation to truth, and I’m just left here, reading the lies, trying to protect my crew. Trying to remain calm. He did it.”
“I’ve been supporting anti-bullying programs forever,” the actress continued. “But now I KNOW because it was ME! If it’s school or work, that you’re required to go to? It’s horrifying. I left. Multiple Physical Assaults. I REALLY get it now. Stay safe. Nothing is worth your safety. Tell someone.”