Michael Weatherly and Sean Murray starred opposite one another in NCIS for over a decade. Weatherly played Agent Gibbs’ second in command, Tony DiNozzo. Sean Murray came onto the scene as a wee trainee, who DiNozzo enjoyed picking on for kicks. The characters had a sibling-like bond; meaning, they bickered and fooled around, but deeply respected and loved one another.
Weatherly and Murray had a very strong on-screen dynamic, yet what was their relationship behind the scenes? Did the two get along on the set of NCIS? During an interview with ETOnline, Sean Murray discussed his relationship with Michael Weatherly, and the off-screen parallels to their characters’ relationship are evident.
Sean Murray on his relationship with former ‘NCIS’ co-star Michael Weatherly
Murray spoke with ETOnline regarding Michael Weatherly’s final NCIS episode — an emotional day for the cast. Murray explained that “In the world of NCIS, characters come and go;” however, that doesn’t mean Weatherly won’t be missed. Murray went on to explain:
Michael and I, you can tell we’re very close…From the beginning of the series, we bonded and formed a real relationship on and off screen.
Sean Murray explains that the two hit it off almost immediately, which should come as no surprise considering the way Murray became a regular. Murray was not supposed to be a mainstay in the series, but he boasted such strong chemistry with the cast in his intended “one and done” episode that the showrunners kept him around, seeing his potential to play well with the others long-term.
Sean Murray on the dynamic between DiNozzo and McGee
Murray goes on to explain his character’s bond with DiNozzo, noting that the on-screen relationship has helped cement quite the off-screen friendship. Murray said:
There is a dynamic between the two characters that built over the years — [a] big brother, little brother relationship that included lots of hazing because Tony was always the fraternity brother eternal…Lots of love, lots of making fun of each other and just a neat dynamic between the two.
Though Michael Weatherly’s absence is evident in the series, NCIS continues to succeed. And, considering Cote de Pablo returned in the final moments of season 16, DiNozzo’s return may be right around the bend. A “Tiva” reunion may just be in the works. Sean Murray notes that Michael Weatherly mentioned doing “the odd episode here or there,” so is the time finally right? Was Weatherly waiting for his former love interest to return first?
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