‘NCIS’ Star Mark Harmon Nearly Lost His Iconic Role to This Huge Movie Star

by Tia Bailey

We all loved Mark Harmon as “NCIS” character Leroy Jethro Gibbs. However, Harmon nearly didn’t get the role, as it almost went to someone else.

Harmon’s character Gibbs was a former U.S. Marine Corps Scout Sniper who went on to become a special agent who commanded a team for the Naval Criminal Investigative Service (NCIS). Gibbs was a beloved character that fans still miss after he left the show in 2021. With such an iconic character, it’s difficult to believe Harmon was almost passed up for the role.

It is public info on IMBd that Harmon almost lost the role to “Star Wars” and “Indiana Jones” actor Harrison Ford. According to Hello Magazine, “he was experiencing a bit of a career slump around the time of the series’s conception and so was urged by colleagues to pursue the part.” Obviously, that ended up not happening, and the Gibbs fans know and love ended up being portrayed by Harmon on “NCIS.”

Fans still miss Gibbs and are hoping for his return to the show. One fan tweeted a photo of Harmon, saying: “New pictures of Mark (who seems to be in great health) appeared recently and was taken in July 2022. I published the one that I thought was interesting. #MarkHarmon #AgentGibbs #LeroyJethroGibbs #JethroGibbs #Gibbs #NCIS.”

The poster of the Tweet did include that they do not like the way paparazzi go about taking photos of celebrities, but they are glad to see Harmon.

Another fan quote-tweeted the photo saying similar. They wrote: “Thank you for posting it. Not my favorite mo to get pics too, but it was sooooo long since we saw something of him. Happy he seems to be healthy.”

Fans Want Gibbs Back on “NCIS”

Harmon recently revealed why he left the show last year. According to Entertainment Tonight, he said of the character: “What has always drawn me here is the character I play and to keep it fresh and to keep it challenging. Plot-wise, this character has taken the path that it did. I thought it was honest and OK with.”

Harmon said this in a special featurette on the DVD of the 19th season of the show. Gibbs did say in his last episode that he was not going to return to D.C. However, Harmon said something else that fans are taking as a hint that he might be back. He said: “I’m not retired… the character is living in Alaska as far as I know.”

“NCIS” is currently in between seasons, with season 20 premiering next month. Fans are ready and excited for the new season of the drama.

Season 20 will premiere on Mondays at 8 p.m. starting September 19 on CBS.