What Sean Murray Was Doing Before NCIS

Sean Murray is widely known for his role as beloved Special Agent Timothy McGee on the popular CBS crime show, "NCIS." According to Screen Rant, Murray is one of the longest-standing characters still on the hit series after making his first appearance on Season 1 Episode 7, which aired in 2003. Ever since he was a young kid, Murray had big dreams of becoming an actor and, in fact, the story behind how he landed his role on "NCIS" is quite interesting. 

According to The Virgin Islands Daily News, after Murray's parents got divorced when he was just 15 years old, his mom packed their bags and moved to Los Angeles so her son could pursue his dreams. That's where Murray's mother met Donald P. Bellisario — creator of "NCIS" and executive producer of "Magnum, P.I." and "JAG." The two eventually married and have been together for over 20 years. Before appearing on "NCIS," Murray briefly starred in Bellisario's show "JAG." However, he admitted that, even though his stepfather gave him a shot, he wasn't easy on him. 

"What people don't realize is if you're related to Don in anyway, and you work for him, he's 10 times harder on you," Murray told the outlet. "It's great though because it's for the right reasons. It's because he's passionate." While fans will probably always link Murray to McGee, he actually starred in several other television shows and films before landing his career-defining role on "NCIS." 

Sean Murray has been acting since the early 90s

Sean Murray was born to be a star. During an interview with Icon Vs. Icon, the actor recalled wanting to be on the big screen ever since he was a little kid. "Performing, and acting specifically, is something I have always known I wanted to do as far back as I can remember," Murray said. "It was the deal for me." According to his IMDb, Murray landed minor roles in the film "Backfield in Motion," the television series "Civil Wars" and the Disney Halloween movie "Hocus Pocus." During that time in the early '90s, he was also cast in the film "This Boy's Life," which starred actors Robert De Niro and Leonardo DiCaprio. 

"It was Leo's first role and I remember just in the couple scenes, the sequence we did, I remember thinking 'Oh, this kid's gonna be big, I know it,'" Murray told Emmy Magazine about his time working with DiCaprio. "I could tell he was going to be big."

Murray put in the hard work and took on a lot of roles before creating a household name for himself. In fact, he actually crossed paths with Mark Harmon — his "NCIS" co-star — a decade before they landed on the same show together.

Sean Murray and Mark Harmon worked together a decade before NCIS

When it's meant to be, it's meant to be. According to CBS, Sean Murray sat down with "The Talk" and revealed when he was a teenager, he was cast on an episode of "Harts of the West" where Mark Harmon surprisingly appeared during the same time. "I remember [Mark] making such an impression on me," Murray told the audience. And, even though 10 years had gone by since their brief encounter, Murray was shocked when Harmon recognized him years later on-set. "It's funny, we didn't spend a lot of time together on that episode, [but] he remembered me after all those years when I came to NCIS."

Together they worked alongside each other for 18 years, and although Harmon is no longer a part of "NCIS," Murray's character McGee is still going strong. According to The Hollywood Reporter, CBS has renewed the "NCIS" franchise for the 2022-23 season. 

"You never know what's coming down the pipe," Murray said during an interview with Parade. "We'll see where it takes me."