CBS has ordered a 17th season of its flagship drama series NCIS for the 2019-2020 broadcast season. The renewal comes after NCIS star and executive producer Mark Harmon has signed a new agreement with the series’ producer, CBS TV Studios, to continue on the long-running crime procedural.
Mothership NCIS is the first of the franchise to be renewed for next season, with spinoffs NCIS: Los Angeles and NCIS:New Orleans also fully expected to come back.
NCIS, CBS’ longest-running scripted series currently on the air, has been a ratings powerhouse and solid new show launching pad for CBS as well as a huge profit generator for CBS Studios, making its renewal a no-brainer.
Now in its 16th season, NCIS is averaging 16.0 million viewers and continues to be the most watched drama and second-most watched entertainment series in all of television, behind only the CBS comedy The Big Bang Theory. On the digital side, NCIS is one of the most-watched primetime series across CBS’ digital platforms, including CBS All Access and in the Electronic Sell Through market. The series also continues to be a big seller in the global market, licensed in more than 200 territories.
Additionally, NCIS repeats very well. In syndication, it is cable television’s most-watched off-network drama, out-delivering the next closest competitor by +27%. NCIS is also cable’s second-most-watched off-net series, behind only The Big Bang Theory.
NCIS premiered on CBS in 2003. During the 2009-2010 broadcast season, it became the #1 drama/scripted program on television, and has remained so for eight of the last nine seasons.
“NCIS has been a global juggernaut for almost two decades,” said Kelly Kahl, President, CBS Entertainment. “Its viewers are clearly the most loyal of any drama on television. They are passionate about the characters, the plot lines, and the storytelling. We owe a huge debt of gratitude to the gifted production team, and the cast, led by the extraordinary Mark Harmon. We are delighted that the show will remain a lynchpin of the CBS schedule this coming season.”
Like Law & Orders and its star Mariska Hargitay, NCIS’ renewal is considered contingent mainly on CBS TV Studios closing a new deal with Harmon. He has deep ties with the NCIS franchise, serving as an executive producer on both the mothership series and offshoot NCIS: New Orleans.
NCIS is the latest early series renewal at CBS. It joins comedies Young Sheldon and Mom, both picked up for two more seasons, crime drama Criminal Minds, which will return for a final season, as well as freshmen FBI, God Friended Me, The Neighborhood and Magnum P.I..
Subscribe to Deadline Breaking News Alerts and keep your inbox happy.