Soon after WHO announced coronavirus outbreak a pandemic, CBS' long-running police-procedural "NCIS" decided to shut down production of episodes and cutting short ongoing season 17. The season will now consist of 20 episodes instead of 24.

According to TV Fanatic, the series star Brian Dietzen, who plays the role of Jimmy Palmer confirmed the news. The show has reportedly chosen to wrap up the production instead of halting it for a few weeks, like other shows. It is said that the remainder of the story will be picked up in "NCIS" season 18 if the show gets renewed.

"Unfortunately we'll be shutting down production of NCIS for the remainder of the season after we wrap tomorrow," Dietzen shared on his official Twitter account on Saturday.

"We'll produce 20 of our 24 episode order. It's been a tremendous year and we have a few more great episodes for you all. Thank you so much for all the support," he added.

Meanwhile, another "NCIS" star Sean Murray, who plays the role of Timothy McGee, also shared the sad news with his fans on Twitter.

"As many of you have already heard, #NCIS production has been put on hold for the time being. we will wrap our current season with 20 eps complete and plan to pick up where we left off when we begin season 18. "stay safe... we'll see you soon," he wrote.

Several fans were disappointed to know this. However, they were empathetic toward the situation.

In a follow-up tweet, the actor revealed that the network is yet to pick up the show for season 18. The show is yet to be officially renewed.

"NCIS" is one of the many other television series that have put a stop at production as a precautionary measure towards containing the widespread of COVID-19, a respiratory illness that is caused by a novel coronavirus.

Mark Harmon
Mark Harmon as Leroy Jethro Gibbs in NCIS series CBS

As per the report, "NCIS" season 17 will now come to an end sometime in April 2020.

"NCIS" season 17 airs Tuesdays on CBS.