NCIS star Michael Weatherly will make his directorial debut early next year.
"I like cameras and I like sets and the surgical nature of make believe that happens - the whole process," Weatherly, who plays Tony DiNozzo, tells TV Guide. "I love all aspects of production, and I have a great deal of respect for the whole craft."
"I'm really excited; it's an extension of my curiosity about film and TV."
Weatherly expects to go behind the camera for an episode filming in January, and his directorial experience will also be a special feature on the forthcoming Season 8 DVD.
Michael says his desire to direct stems from ... the ABC soap opera Loving.
"That was always fascinating to me," he says. "When I was on the soap opera, I'd sit in the editing booths when they'd tighten up the show to see how they did it, what the technical process was. I should've started getting into the technical side of it earlier."A CBS rep confirms that Weatherly will helm an upcoming episode, and the actor whose character is known for his sense of humor promises the episode will stand out.
"I've got a lot of ideas about my version of NCIS," Michael says. "I can promise it will be a little bit different. It's daunting to imagine that I am going to be in charge."
"Everyone is terrified," jokes the 42-year-old original cast member. "Sean Murray [McGee] is probably most terrified because I have got a lot of acting notes for him."
NCIS returns with a new episode December 14.