Why the Tony/Ziva NCIS Spinoff Went to Paramount+ and Not CBS

If you’re a bit jealous that Paramount+ will be the exclusive home of the new NCIS spinoff revolving around Tony and Ziva, know that the head of CBS Entertainment is, as well.

Announced on Feb. 28 as a Paramount+ original and reuniting franchise vets Michael Weatherly and Cote de Pablo on-screen for the first time since October 2013, the yet-to-be titled spinoff will follow Tony DiNozzo and Ziva David as they go on the run across Europe, trying to figure out who is targeting them, so that they and daughter Tali can finally have their “happily ever after.”

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Filming begins this summer, on location in Europe.

That this lonnnnnng-awaited “Tiva” reunion will eventually stream on Paramount+ and not air “free” on CBS irks some fans of the primetime super-couple. And CBS Entertainment president Amy Reisenbach feels their pain, in a sense.

Asked if she is “jealous” that the #Tiva series is bound for Paramount+ and not CBS, Reisenbach told Deadline, “Yeah, a little bit, I’m not going to lie, sure. I’m a Tiva fan like everyone else.

“But we all work together. We are all one ecosystem,” the exec added, “and I have no doubt that [the CBS prequel spinoff NCIS:Origins and the [NCIS] shows that live on the network will drive viewers over at P+, and likewise their show will send them back our way. And that’s what matters most, that people are watching it…. It’s such a treat for the fans no matter wherever it airs.”

NCIS Tony Ziva Spinoff
NCIS Tony Ziva Spinoff

The Tony/Ziva Spinoff: Everything We Know

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CBS Studios president David Stapf in turn told Deadline, “No,” there was never talk of producing the #Tiva spinoff for CBS, stressing, “it was always designed to be a streaming show.”

“Tony and Ziva, it’s one of the most unrequited love stories for the audience,” Stapf explained. “So, reuniting them with a global audience” — via Paramount+ distribution — “is the intent on that show.”

As for whether CBS might air at least the first episode of the Tony/Ziva spinoff, as America’s Most Watched Network has sometimes done with other Paramount+ originals, Stapf said that’s “a good question,” though a premature one, seeing as filming doesn’t even begin until this summer. “We haven’t dealt with it yet,” he said.

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