For four seasons now (more or less a few episodes), old This 70s show star Wilmer Valderrama showed some occasional badassery as Nick Torres on CBS hit NCIS. Her career certainly hasn’t slowed down outside of procedural drama, as her current voice role in Disney’s box office success Encanto can attest to this, but only in a way that clearly would not affect his time on NCIS. But now it’s been revealed that Valderrama is teaming up with Disney to star in a very interesting new project that will no doubt take a lot of his time, while showing more of that badassery.
Wilmer Valderrama is working with Disney Branded Television on the development of a newly reimagined version of the classic western action-adventure Zorro. He will serve as the star and executive producer of the new project, so it’s clearly more than just a passing interest in the fan-beloved actor, whose love for the titular hero goes back a long way.
In fact, here’s how Valderrama explained his passion for a new Zorro series:
At this point, it is not known if or how Zorro could affect Wilmer Valderrama’s work on NCIS. While he is currently developing other projects as an EP behind the scenes, this will be the first time he has starred in a new project outside of the CBS drama. And while there are certainly ways to achieve this without Nick Torres being struck off the show, it’s more of a possibility than ever. Yes Mark Harmon can go, anyone can.
That said, fans of the show shouldn’t be too worried just yet. Torres is a staple of the NCIS team at this point, and Wilmer Valderrama has been very vocal about loving his time on the show, while always being quick to show his appreciation to the fan base. And as for the narrative, there is no clear sign that Torres is heading in any direction other than “after the bad guys.” So while that can obviously change in an instant, that moment has not yet come.
We also do not know where this new Zorro the project will end, assuming it comes to fruition as a full-fledged series. (Let us not forget Hollywood’s relatively recent attempt to bring Zorro back as a theatrical release.) Will Disney want to play on the recognition of Valderrama’s network TV by putting it on ABC, or will they want to offer something less rigidly designed as a streaming drama for Disney +? Or will it become somehow an animated preschool series for Disney Jr.? Probably not the last, but stranger things have happened.
Keep watching Wilmer Valderrama on NCIS (while you still can) when it returns to CBS after its winter break on Monday, Jan.3 at 9:00 p.m. ET. While you wait, see everything else to come to the small screen next year with our 2022 TV premiere schedule, and go check out Valderrama’s voice-over skills in Encanto!