EXCLUSIVE: Michael Weatherly says he misses his 'NCIS' co-stars, jokes 'Bull' doesn't get 'head-slapped'


Michael Weatherly's return to CBS is here!

The 48-year-old actor is gearing up for his new legal procedural, Bull, loosely based on Dr. Phil's early days as a trial consultant, and ET's Kevin Frazier was with the star on New York Street on the CBS Radford lot in Studio City, California, to get the scoop.

RELATED: Watch Michael Weatherly Give a Hilarious Tour of the 'Bull' Set

"Some of my favorite moments take place in airports when I hear people say, 'Dr. Bull! Looking forward to Bull!'" Weatherly told ET. "And every once in a while, someone tries to slap my head and I go 'Uh...' 'cause Bull doesn't get head-slapped."

Weatherly is referencing his beloved NCIS character, Tony DiNozzo, whom he bid farewell to on the emotional season 13 finale in May. Bull is getting a plum Tuesday lead-in, with NCIS -- TV's most-watched drama --serving as the evening's anchor.

See photos of Michael Weatherly through the years:

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Michael Weatherly through the years
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Michael Weatherly through the years
Michael Weatherly (Photo by J. Vespa/WireImage)
Jessica Alba & Michael Weatherly (Photo by Steve Granitz/WireImage)
Michael Weatherly & Murray during The Lint Roller Party at Barker Hanger in Santa Monica, California, United States. (Photo by Gregg DeGuire/WireImage)
UNITED STATES - JULY 18: CBS Party at Dodger's Stadium - TCA Press Tour In Los Angeles, United States On July 18, 2004-Pauley Perrette and Michael Weatherly of 'NCSI,' at the CBS Party for Television Critics Association's (TCA) Press Tour. (Photo by Barbara BINSTEIN/Gamma-Rapho via Getty Images)
MONTE CARLO, MONACO - JUNE 30: US actor Michael Weatherly attends the photocall of 'Navy NCIS: Naval Criminal Investigative Service' during the 46th annual Monte Carlo Television Festival at the Forum Grimaldi, on June 30, 2006 in Monte Carlo, Monaco. (Photo by Francois Durand/Getty Images)
LOS ANGELES - AUGUST 1: 'Agent Afloat' -- The NCIS team (Michael Weatherly, left, Mark Harmon, center and Cote de Pablo, right) investigate a mysterious suicide aboard a carrier on NCIS Tuesday Sept. 30 (8:00-9:00PM, ET/PT) on the CBS Television Network. (Photo by Cliff Lipson/CBS via Getty Images)
VALENCIA, CA - SEPTEMBER 04: (L-R) Actors David McCallum, Lauren Holly, Pauley Perrette, Sean Murray, Cote de Pablo, Brian Dietzen, Mark Harmon and Michael Weatherly attend the NCIS 100th Episode celebration at the Valencia Studios on September 4, 2007 in Valencia, California. (Photo by Michael Buckner/Getty Images)
MELBOURNE, AUSTRALIA - MAY 06: Actor Michael Weatherly and his niece Alexandra arrive at the 2007 TV Week Logie Awards at the Crown Casino on May 6, 2007 in Melbourne, Australia. The annual television awards sees Australia's most popular television talent compete for the coveted awards, of which there are 11 Most Popular categories and 11 industry-voted Most Outstanding categories. (Photo by Patrick Riviere/Getty Images)
VALENCIA - NOVEMBER 19: 'Flesh and Bone'-- Gibbs questions DiNozzoÕs (Michael Weatherly, right) ability to do his job when the elder DiNozzo (special guest star Robert Wagner, left) becomes involved in their latest investigation, on ÒNCIS, Tuesday Jan.12 (8:00-9:00PM, ET/PT) on the CBS Television Network. (Photo by Sonja Flemming/CBS via Getty Images)
LOS ANGELES - OCTOBER 13: 'Child's Play'- The team (Michael Weatherly, Mark Harmon, Sean Murray, left to right) must put their Thanksgiving plans on hold when the horrific death of a Marine leads them to a government think tank that employs child prodigies, on NCIS, Tuesday Nov. 24 (8:00-9:00PM, ET/PT) on the CBS Television Network. (Photo by Michael Yarish/CBS via Getty Images)
LOS ANGELES - JUNE 1: 'Jack Knife' - When a Marine is found dead, DiNozzo (Michael Weatherly) and the team hit the open road to bust an illegal trucking operation, on NCIS, Tuesday Feb. 9 (8:00-9:00PM, ET/PT) on the CBS Television Network. (Photo by Michael Yarish/CBS via Getty Images)
(EXCLUSIVE, Premium Rates Apply) MONTE-CARLO, MONACO - JUNE 09: ***EXCLUSIVE ACCESS*** Actor Michael Weatherly attends the 'NCIS' portrait session at Grimaldi Forum during the annual Monte Carlo Television Festival on June 9, 2010 in Monte-Carlo, Monaco. (Photo by Francois G. Durand/WireImage)
LOS ANGELES - -OCTOBER 3: 'Enemies Foreign' -- DiNozzo (Michael Weatherly) and the team are assigned to protect Ziva's father, when his attendance at a NCIS conference leads to some unexpected surprises on 'NCIS,' Tuesday, November 16 (8:00-9:00 PM, ET/PT) on the CBS Television Network. (Photo by Monty Brinton/CBS via Getty Images)
LOS ANGELES - JANUARY 9: 'Secrets' -- When a Navy captain is found dead with an unusual costume hidden under his uniform, NCIS uncovers a secret society of real-life super heroes and must track down the villain, on NCIS, Tuesday, Feb. 14 (8:00-9:00 PM, ET/PT) on the CBS Television Network. Perrey Reeves (right) guest stars as Wendy Miller, DiNozzo's (Michael Weatherly, left) journalist ex-fiance. (Photo by Ron P. Jaffe/CBS via Getty Images)
LOS ANGELES - MARCH 11: 'Dead Reflection' -- The NCIS team (left to right: Cote de Pablo, Michael Weatherly and Mark Harmon) tracks a Navy lieutenant's killer after a Pentagon security camera reveals a petty officer committing the crime. Meanwhile, Gibbs announces that Agent Barrett and her team will take over the Port-to-Port serial killer case, on NCIS, Tuesday, April 12 (8:00-9:00 PM, ET/PT) on the CBS Television Network. (Photo by Sonja Flemming/CBS via Getty Images)
LOS ANGELES - JANUARY 11: (l-r); Michael Weatherly, Sean Murray and Pauley Perrette during the NCIS session at the CBS Winter Press Tour 2012, held on January 11, 2012 at The Langham Huntington Hotel in Los Angeles, CA. (Photo by Monty Brinton/CBS via Getty Images)
LOS ANGELES - AUGUST 24: A petty officer is gunned down in a billionaire'Âs Ferrari and the investigation leads the NCIS team to discover a link to a man Gibbs was named after, on NCIS, Tuesday, Oct. 30 (8:00-9:00 PM, ET/PT) on the CBS Television Network. Pictured left to right: Mark Harmon and Michael Weatherly (Photo by Sonja Flemming/CBS via Getty Images) *** Local Caption)
LOS ANGELES - APRIL 25: 'Till Death Do Us Part' -- Terrorism threatens to shake the foundations of the Navy and NCIS, when the team continues to be eluded by the newest member of the NCIS Most Wanted Wall. Meanwhile, Jimmy Palmer's destination wedding is impacted by the case, on the season finale of NCIS, Tuesday, May 15 (8:00-9:00 PM, ET/PT) on the CBS Television Network. Pictured left to right: Cote de Pablo, Sean Murray and Michael Weatherly (Photo by Michael Yarish/CBS via Getty Images)
LOS ANGELES, CA - OCTOBER 16: Michael Weatherly visits 'Extra' at The Grove on October 16, 2012 in Los Angeles, California. (Photo by Noel Vasquez/Getty Images for Extra)
NEW YORK, NY - MAY 15: Actors Michael Weatherly, Cote de Pablo and Mark Harmon attend the 2013 CBS Upfront at The Tent at Lincoln Center on May 15, 2013 in New York City. (Photo by Jim Spellman/WireImage)
LOS ANGELES, CA - JANUARY 08: Actors Josh Holloway (L) and Michael Weatherly attend The 40th Annual People's Choice Awards at Nokia Theatre L.A. Live on January 8, 2014 in Los Angeles, California. (Photo by Jeff Kravitz/FilmMagic)
LOS ANGELES - AUGUST 27: 'Anonymous Was a Woman' -- Gibbs and McGee (Sean Murray, left) travel to Afghanistan when a murder case leads them to an Afghan women's shelter Mike Frank'Âs secretly supported for years, on NCIS, Tuesday, Oct. 15 (8:00-9:00 PM, ET/PT) on the CBS Television Network. Also pictured: Michael Weatherly. (Photo by Sonja Flemming/CBS via Getty Images)
WEST HOLLYWOOD, CA - JULY 17: (L-R) Actors Michael Weatherly, Pauley Perrette and Brian Dietzen arrive at the CBS, The CW, Showtime & CBS Television Distribution 2014 Television Critics Association Summer Press Tour at Pacific Design Center on July 17, 2014 in West Hollywood, California. (Photo by Barry King/FilmMagic)
LOS ANGELES - NOVEMBER 10: 'Check' -- The NCIS team must investigate a series of crime scenes that appear to be copy-cats of previous cases, on NCIS, Tuesday, Jan. 6 (8:00-9:00 PM, ET/PT), on the CBS Television Network. Pictured left to right: Emily Wickersham and Michael Weatherly (Photo by Greg Gayne/CBS via Getty Images)
LOS ANGELES - AUGUST 26: 'Choke Hold' -- The Secretary of the Navy assigns the NCIS team to a joint terrorism task force after a Naval research scientist is murdered and the lead suspect is wanted by the Russian government. In order to get a jump on the case, Gibbs has DiNozzo (Michael Weatherly) run interference with the leader of the task force, FBI Agent Leia Pendergast, on NCIS, Tuesday, Oct. 14 (8:00-9:00 PM, ET/PT), on the CBS Television Network. (Photo by Michael Yarish/CBS via Getty Images)
LOS ANGELES - NOVEMBER 20: 'Sister City: Part One' -- After the passengers and crew of a private plane traveling from New Orleans to Washington D.C. are lethally poisoned, all evidence points to the missing chef, Abby's brother, Luca (Tyler Ritter). Gibbs and the D.C. team work in conjunction with Pride and the New Orleans team to locate Luca and determine why a private tech company was targeted, on the first part of a special two-hour crossover event on NCIS, Tuesday, Jan. 5 (8:00-9:00 PM, ET/PT), on the CBS Television Network. Pictured left to right: Pauley Perrette and Michael Weatherly (Photo by Bill Inoshita/CBS via Getty Images)
LOS ANGELES, CA - FEBRUARY 07: (R) Actor Michael Weatherly and guest attend the Hennessy Toasts Achievements In Music on February 7, 2015 in Los Angeles, California. (Photo by Unique Nicole/WireImage)
NEW YORK - JULY 27: 'The Woman in 8D'-- Dr. Bull and his Trial Analysis Corporation (TAC) team must formulate a new defense strategy when they discover the jury has a subconscious gender bias toward their client, a female pilot accused of negligence after one of her flights crashes, on BULL, Tuesday, Sept. 27 (10:00-11:00 PM, ET/PT), on the CBS Television Network. Pictured: Michael Weatherly as Dr. Jason Bull (Photo by Jojo Whilden/CBS via Getty Images)
BEVERLY HILLS, CA - AUGUST 10: Actor Michael Weatherly speaks onstage at the 'Bull' panel discussion during the CBS portion of the 2016 Television Critics Association Summer Tour at The Beverly Hilton Hotel on August 10, 2016 in Beverly Hills, California. (Photo by Frederick M. Brown/Getty Images)
LOS ANGELES, CA - SEPTEMBER 18: Actress Michael Weatherly and Bojana Jankovic attend the 68th Annual Primetime Emmy Awards at Microsoft Theater on September 18, 2016 in Los Angeles, California. (Photo by Frank Trapper/Corbis via Getty Images).
NEW YORK - SEPTEMBER 29: 'Bedside Manner'---- Bull must find a way to reverse the negative effect his egomaniacal client, a surgeon with a God complex being sued for malpractice, has on the jury. Also, Bull hires Liberty Davis (Dena Tyler), a previous client's attorney, when he decides Benny may not be sympathetic enough to the jurors, on BULL, Tuesday, Nov. 1 (9:00-10:00 PM, ET/PT) on the CBS Television Network. Pictured: Michael Weatherly as Dr. Jason Bull (Photo by Craig Blankenhorn/CBS via Getty Images)
NEW YORK, NY - OCTOBER 05: Michael Weatherly attends TV Guide Magazine Celebrates CBS' Michael Weatherly at HGU New York on October 5, 2016 in New York City. (Photo by Brad Barket/Getty Images)
NEW YORK - OCTOBER 11: 'Callisto'--When Bull and Trial Analysis Corp. help a young woman fight a drug patent lawsuit, they are forced to travel to Callisto, the small Texan town where Bull suffered the only trial loss of his career, on BULL, Tuesday, Oct. 18 (9:00-10:00 PM, ET/PT) on the CBS Television Network. Pictured: Michael Weatherly as Dr. Jason Bull Image is a screen grab. (Photo by CBS via Getty Images)
NEW YORK - MARCH 4: 'Welcome Back, Dr. Bull'-- Bull makes a deal with top criminal attorney J.P. Nunnelly (guest star Eliza Dushku) to defend Benny when he goes to trial for misconduct in a case related to his former career with the District Attorney's office, on BULL, Tuesday, May 9 (9:00-10:00 PM, ET/PT) on the CBS Television Network. Pictured: Michael Weatherly as Dr. Jason Bull (Photo by David Giesbrecht/CBS via Getty Images)
MONTE-CARLO, MONACO - JUNE 16: Bojana Jankovic and Michael Weatherly attend the 57th Monte Carlo TV Festival Opening Ceremony on June 16, 2017 in Monte-Carlo, Monaco. (Photo by Stephane Cardinale - Corbis/Corbis via Getty Images)
MONTE-CARLO, MONACO - JUNE 16: Michael Weatherly arrives at the Opening Ceremony of the 57th Monte Carlo TV Festival and World premier of Absentia Serie on June 16, 2017 in Monte-Carlo, Monaco. (Photo by Tony Barson/FilmMagic)
US actor Michael Weatherly poses during a photocall for the TV show 'Bull' as part of the 57th Monte-Carlo Television Festival on June 18, 2017 in Monaco. The Monte-Carlo Television Festival held since 1961, aims at encouraging the new art form of television. / AFP PHOTO / VALERY HACHE (Photo credit should read VALERY HACHE/AFP/Getty Images)
MONTE-CARLO, MONACO - JUNE 20: Michael Weatherly and his wife Bojana Jankovic attends the closing ceremony of the 57th Monte Carlo TV Festival on June 20, 2017 in Monte-Carlo, Monaco. (Photo by Pascal Le Segretain/Getty Images)
NEW YORK, NY - SEPTEMBER 26: Actor Michael Weatherly visits Build to discuss 'Bull' at Build Studio on September 26, 2017 in New York City. (Photo by Bennett Raglin/Getty Images)
NEW YORK - SEPTEMBER 29: 'The Devil, The Detail'-- Bull agrees to help the parents of a former employee sue a drug company when their son commits suicide during a drug trial. However, the task is complicated when the company brings in their own trial scientist, Arti Cander (Emmy Award winner Archie Panjabi), on BULL, Tuesday, Nov 14 (9:00-10:00 PM, ET/PT) on the CBS Television Network. Pictured: Michael Weatherly as Dr. Jason Bull (Photo by David Giesbrecht/CBS via Getty Images)
NEW YORK - JULY 13: 'The Ground Beneath Their Feet'--Bull returns to work after his heart attack with a new client for the firm to represent in civil court, an insurance company being sued by a dying mother for denying her a liver transplant, on the third season premiere of BULL, Monday, Sept. 24 (10:00-11:00 PM, ET/PT) on the CBS Television Network. Pictured: Michael Weatherly as Dr. Jason Bull (Photo by Craig Blankenhorn/CBS via Getty Images)
NEW YORK, NY - MAY 24: Actor Michael Weatherly attends the 'Last Days Of Disco' 20th anniversary screening at Walter Reade Theater on May 24, 2018 in New York City. (Photo by Monica Schipper/Getty Images)
NEW YORK - MARCH 31: 'Redemption' -- Bull helps Jim Grayson (Nathan Darrow), a respectable family man who was arrested for changing his identity after being the unwitting getaway driver in a fatal robbery years ago. Bull hopes they can convince the jury that Jim has redeemed himself for his past misdeeds by living an upstanding life for years, on BULL, Tuesday, April 3 (9:00-10:00 PM, ET/PT) on the CBS Television Network. Pictured: Michael Weatherly as Dr. Jason Bull Photo is a screen grab. (Photo by CBS via Getty Images)
NEW YORK - FEBRUARY 3: 'Keep Your Friends Close'--Bull is brought on to help the FBI's case against a hacker whom they believe breached air traffic control at LaGuardia Airport. But when Cable learns that the accused is her friend's husband, she risks breaking the law -- and defying Bull -- to try and prove his innocence, on BULL, Tuesday, Feb. 6 (9:00-10:00 PM, ET/PT) on the CBS Television Network. Pictured: Michael Weatherly as Dr. Jason Bull Image is a screen grab. (Photo by CBS via Getty Images)
NEW YORK - MAY 18: BULL stars Michael Weatherly as Dr. Jason Bull in a drama inspired by the early career of Dr. Phil McGraw, the founder of one of the most prolific trial consulting firms of all time. Brilliant, brash and charming, Dr. Bull is the ultimate puppet master as he combines psychology, human intuition and high tech data to learn what makes jurors, attorneys, witnesses and the accused tick. This fall, BULL will be broadcast Tuesdays (9:00-10:00 PM, ETPT) on the CBS Television Network. (Photo by Patrick Harbron/CBS via Getty Images)
NEW YORK, NY - MAY 18: Actor Michael Weatherly of 'Bull' attends the 2016 CBS Upfront at Oak Room on May 18, 2016 in New York City. (Photo by Gary Gershoff/WireImage)
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"I love those guys and I miss them and we're very connected," Weatherly admitted. "I think it's great that we're on [the] schedule together because it's one fluid evening for CBS."

During his ET interview, Weatherly's former NCIS co-star Emily Wickersham unexpectedly called and the two ended up Facetiming.

RELATED: Michael Weatherly Thrilled 'Bull' Is Airing After 'NCIS'

"It's looking fantastic," Wickersham said of season 14, before telling Weatherly: "We miss you a little bit. I'm very excited about your premiere."

Weatherly recalled learning Bull would follow NCIS, admitting he "didn't" see the scheduling move "coming."

"I was in Boston when I heard about the time slot, and I jumped up and down like a kangaroo who had just had three cups of coffee," he hilariously shared. "I think I just kept hopping around and my wife was like, 'What's going on?' Then I had to explain to my wife and TV programming and then it got boring."

RELATED: Michael Weatherly Talks Bicoastal Living and Being Away From His Kids

On a personal note, the Los Angeles-based Weatherly -- who films Bull in New York City -- will soon be celebrating his seventh wedding anniversary with his doctor wife, Bojana Jakovic. Even though he has the acting thing down, Weatherly proposed a Plan B should the jobs stop coming.

"What I'm thinking is, the acting goes sideways, we're just going to set up a little private practice somewhere and I'm gonna be in charge of how much it costs," he said.

Bull airs Tuesdays at 9 p.m. ET/PT on CBS.

RELATED: Michael Weatherly Leaves 'NCIS' After 13 Seasons: 'It's Been a Fantastic Ride'


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