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Today, Sean Murray is best known for playing Agent Timothy McGee in the hit primetime procedural NCIS. Murray became a mainstay in season two — transitioning out of a recurring role and into a primary protagonist position — and he has remained steadfast in his commitment to the show ever since. With the conclusion of its 17th season, the show looks toward a bright 18th season with Sean Murray back as Gibbs’ second in command. 

Sean Murray of NCIS
Sean Murray of the CBS series NCIS | Kevin Lynch/CBS via Getty Images

After so many years on the show, many actors have come and gone — some stay for a while, yet others appear for brief appearances. In short, NCIS is no stranger to the celebrity guest star. During an interview with WHOSAY, Sean Murray revealed some of his favorites. Though it was hard for the actor to choose among so many great options, he rattled off a few great ones right off the bat. 

Sean Murray on his favorite ‘NCIS’ guest stars 

During an interview, NCIS guest stars became a hot topic of conversation. The show has been lucky enough to welcome in some top tier talent: Zac Efron (pre-worldwide fame), Lindsay Wagner, Abigail Breslin, Bob Newhart, and more. When asked to reveal his favorites, Murray stated:

We’ve had so many really great…One of my favorite recurring is Robert Wagner as Anthony DiNozzo Sr. Having Lily Tomlin play my grandmother was really amazing. Lily Tomlin is just such incredible talent. It’s beyond words. We’ve had Bob Newhart…Just so many…You never know who is going to come in…You get really surprised to see some of the cool people that show up. 


From Robert Wagner to Lily Tomlin and Bob Newhart, Sean Murray names a few major A-listers when listing his favorite guest stars. So, who were they in NCIS, and who are they outside the series? 

All About Robert Wagner, Lily Tomlin, and Bob Newhart 

In NCIS, Robert Wagner plays Tony DiNozzo’s dad; the child and son boast a similar womanizing disposition, yet have quite a fraught and complex relationship. Outside of NCIS, Wagner is famous for Hart to Hart, It Takes a Thief, The Pink Panther, Austin Powers, and more. 

As for Lily Tomlin, who played McGee’s quirky and kooky grandma, she’s one of the most celebrated comedians and actresses alive. She is currently in Netflix’s Grace and Frankie, yet Tomlin has won multiple Primetime Emmy awards and is a multi-nominated Golden Globe actress and one-time Oscar nominee. 

And, who could forget Bob Newhart as Dr. Walter Magnus in NCIS — a shrewd and eccentric guy with a nostalgic vibe? Newhart is well-known for The Bob Newhart Show, Elf, Newhart, The Rescuers, The Librarian, and more.

‘NCIS’: How Sean Murray’s Character Timothy McGee Was Created

Over the years, NCIS has opened its doors to top-tier actors who yearn to play with the existing NCIS cast and crew. After 17 successful seasons and counting, who wouldn’t want to partake in a show that has really discovered its stride?