‘NCIS’ Star Wilmer Valderrama Said Cast of ‘That 70s Show’ Was ‘Pretending’ to Act

by John Jamison
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Wilmer Valderrama has been a staple on the long-running “NCIS” for the past few years, playing Special Agent Nick Torres. It’s a serious acting job. None can argue with that. But apparently, when he first rose to fame on “That 70s Show,” he and his fellow cast members were basically getting paid to goof off all day.

Wilmer Valderrama has sneakily become a prolific actor over the last decade. And the man who played comedic relief character Fez on “That 70s Show” for eight years is hardly recognizable these days. He’s put on some muscle. He branched out into some challenging roles. And he has found a home as a member of the NCIS Major Case Response Team led by Mark Harmon’s Leroy Gibbs.

It’s an impressive shift from the comedy-driven period sitcom that made him a household name. But he has fond memories of the 200 episodes he taped alongside his fellow “That 70s Show” cast members. He even claims that they still have regular dinners. And one of the things they like to joke about when they get together is how lighthearted the whole experience was.

Valderrama described what it was like during an interview with Australia’s Studio 10 back in 2018.

“[Fez] was a blast. I mean, you know I always joke around. The cast and I have these little dinners that we do sometimes. And sometimes we remember on those days going to work and going out there, laughing all day long, and pretending to be actors,” Valderrama said. “You know, and then going home and being like, ‘I think we just made some money. I think they called it art or something,’ you know. But we had a lot of fun.”

The ‘NCIS’ Star Said Working on ‘That 70s Show’ Was a ‘Magical’ Way to Grow Up

Running around in costumes, goofing off with your friends all day, and getting paid for it? If there’s a better way to spend your teenage years, we’re all ears.

Fortunately for “NCIS” star Wilmer Valderrama, that’s exactly how he got to spend a big chunk of his youth. Of course, the cast was doing more than “pretending” when they led “That 70s Show” to an eight-season run and a handful of Primetime Emmy Award nominations. But the fact that it felt that way speaks to how much fun they must have been having on the set.

More than that, Valderrama effectively grew into manhood during his time on “That 70s Show.” And that’s not something he takes for granted.

“You know, we were each other’s brother and sisters,” Valderrama continued in the 2018 interview. “And growing up like that and playing these silly characters and committing and creating things in a sound stage together was magical.”

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