9 Things You Didn’t Know About Former NCIS Star Cote De Pablo

  
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7. Name Game

After moving to Miami, Florida, at 10 years old, Cote discovered that many people could not properly pronounce her first name which was “Maria Jose” so she decided to simply go by Cote, which is a common Chilean nickname for Maria Jose. “My real name is Maria Jose de Pablo. But when I was in fifth grade, people couldn’t pronounce it, so I told them to call my Coty. Then I found out there was a beauty line called Coty, and I hated that! So I changed it to Cote. A lot of people don’t get it, but in Chile, if your name is Maria Jose, they call you Cote,” she explained in an interview.

Photo by Brian To/Variety/REX/Shutterstock

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6. Getting Her Start

Cote de Pablo got her start early in front of the camera when at only 15 years old she began hosting a few episodes of the talk show Control on Univision. After graduating university she moved to New York and worked as a waitress and did commercials while also picking up theater parts before landing her first on-screen role in a 2000 episode of The $treet. Just as she was about to star in Broadway in The Mambo Kings, she was asked to come in for a screen test alongside Michael Weatherly. As she was waiting for her cab to fly back home, producer Donald Bellisario met up with her to tell her she had won the role of Ziva David.

Michael Germana/Everett Collection

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