Wilmer Valderrama Talks ‘NCIS’ Success and ‘Starting All Over Again’ With New Relationship

Wilmer Valderrama has nothing but amazing things to say about his time at NCIS.

Rachel Smith from ET caught up with the 39-year-old actor in New York City, where he couldn’t help but praise the great team he works with. NCIS is currently in its 17th season and is the second longest running, non-animated, primetime show in the US

“It is reflected in how unique an opportunity it was for everyone and the show’s cast,” Valderrama told ET when he talked about the legacy of the show. “I think it’s the people. I think the people keep the engine running. I think the public can see that something is working on the set and that people like coming to work and that they are still trying.”

“And after 17 seasons to have a cast and a writer’s room and a crew that is still not only grateful to be on set, but also excited to come to work, and still smile all day long and to have that energy, “he continued. “From top to bottom, you are talking about Mark Harmon.”

“Mark is someone who leads with kindness and his energy is beautiful. We have quite a bit of bromance, he and I. But from top to bottom, I think it’s the people. The fact that people still like to come to work, “Valderrama noted.

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Valderrama is lucky to have had a great cast and crew at That ’70s Show. He played in the sitcom from 1998 to 2006 as the sweet foreign exchange student Fez. So would he ever consider getting the team back together and again criticizing his role? The answer: yes!

“We had a conversation about a movie from the 70s. And we had a conversation about:” Can this really be? Can it happen? ” We are ready, “he admitted. “There is nothing in the works right now and I believe we are all too busy for it to happen.”

“Everyone is excited to be back on the set together, that is a fact. I will probably have to learn again how to say my accent. I will probably have to learn again how to talk like a freak,” he said laughing.

Meanwhile, the actor is preparing to celebrate his 40th birthday in January and he welcomes the new decade into his life with open arms.

“I have waited a long time to be old,” he burst. “I played 17 years old for eight years. I was really ready to grow old. I hardly play the parts of my age now … But I am excited to embrace the gray hair that comes in.”

He is also ready “for the next chapter” in his life, including girlfriend Amanda Pacheco.

“I have to say that I am very happy in my life. At the moment I have the feeling that it is so interesting that you are working so long and it feels like you are suddenly starting over,” he explained. “And in my career, especially in my personal life, I am very happy where I am. I think I grew up to be the man I should be. I am the most grounded person I have ever been. I am the most excited and energetic about what lies ahead. But I am ready. I am ready for the next chapter. “

And when Valderrama does not give everything on the set, or with his loved ones, he gives back to his community and collaborates with the United Service Organizations (USO). After meeting two soldiers about 19 years ago, who thanked him for making That ’70s Show laugh, the actor felt moved and wanted to get involved with USO.

“I appreciate the person who needs it,” he said. “That it requires a uniform and wears it with so much pride and such effortless sacrifice. And I think of their families and I think of that person in the uniform.”

“I have been so grateful to this country and so grateful for the American Dream,” he shared. “Because of the American Dream, I can be everything that I am today. And the only reason I can do that today is because of these men and women who fight for freedom and for an American flag that is born when hope awakens. Everything can happen as long as you still see that American flag waving. “

Written by Tommy Kilmer

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