Birth name: María José de Pablo Fernández
Birthday: November 12, 1979
Birthplace: Santiago, Chile
Raised in: Miami, FL
Currently Resides in: Los Angeles, CA
Parents: Mother, Maria Olga Fernandez, father Francisco de Pablo
Siblings: 1 sister Andrea, 1 brother Francisco, both younger
College: Carnegie Mellon
Cote de Pablo was born on November 12th, 1979, in Santiago, Chile. When she was ten, her mother received a job with Telemundo and she and her family moved to Miami, Florida. There, Cote attended Arvida Middle School in Miami, and later in life, attended Carnegie Mellon University, graduating in 2000, receiving a BFA in Acting and Musical Theatre. Cote was also a National Foundation for the Arts Finalist.
Cote’s first main acting experience came when she was a co-host of the popular Latin themed talk show, Control, with Carlos Ponce.
Later in life at Carnegie Mellon, Cote appeared in several theater programs, including “The House of Bernarda Alba,” “Cloud Techtonics,” “Indiscretions,” “The Fantasticks,” “And The World Goes ‘Round” and “A Little Night Music.”.
After graduation, she moved to New York City to find work as an actress, working as a waitress in an Indian restaurant in Manhattan and an Italian eatery in Brooklyn to support herself. She picked up parts in the New York City Public Theater, in the TV show All My Children, and in commercials. In 2005, de Pablo was about to make her Broadway debut in The Mambo Kings in 2005 as Dolores Fuentes, but the show closed after a short trial run in San Francisco. Two days after The Mambo Kings closed, de Pablo was asked to audition for NCIS. She was put alongside series star Michael Weatherly to test for chemistry during her second audition; he went offscript by brushing her hair back and commenting, “You remind me of Salma Hayek”, to which de Pablo stayed in character and “dismissed him completely”. Afterwards, producer Donald Bellisario met with her when she was waiting for a cab to take her back to the airport and told her she got the part.
2006: Won an Imagen Award for Best Supporting Actress in Television for NCIS
2008: Nominated for an Imagen Award for Best Supporting Actress in Television for NCIS
2008: Nominated for an ALMA Award for Outstanding Actress in a Drama Television Series for NCIS
2009: Nominated for an ALMA Award for Outstanding Actress in a Drama Television Series for NCIS
2009: Nominated for an Imagen Award for Best Supporting Actress in Television for NCIS
2011: Nominated for an Imagen Award for Best Actress in Television for NCIS
2011: Won an ALMA Award for Favorite Television Actress – Leading Role in a Drama for NCIS
According to her biography on the CBS website for NCIS (2008), Cote is currently living in Los Angeles, and spends her free time writing and performing original music.
Due to her role as Ziva David on NCIS, Cote has acquired fans from all over the world, including the United States, France, Germany, Italy and Australia.