The four-hour series event, airing March 31 and April 1, is based on Alice Hoffman's historical novel about the Siege of Masada in 70 C.E. where 900 Jews stood their ground against Roman armies after being forced out of their home in Jerusalem and ensconced in a fortress at a mountain in the Judean desert. The project will recount the events from the perspective of a few extraordinary women with different backstories who share a common bond for survival. Cote plays Shirah, a healer accused of practicing witchcraft.
The 35-year-old actress was in full wardrobe as she gave a tour of the set in Malta and spilled details on the show.
"Is there romance for Shirah?" Cote said. "Let's just say it's all the romance I didn't get on [NCIS]. I'm kidding! There's a lot of passion and there's a lot of love and there's a lot of loss in this story so it's a heavily emotional piece."
The series comes from executive producers Mark Burnett and Roma Downey, who also produced the hit History Channel miniseries The Bible.
During her time on NCIS, Cote played Special Agent Ziva David for eight seasons, but her goodbye at the start of season 11 left room for her character to return.
"I'm always grateful to hear things like, 'We miss you,'" Cote said. "I mean, the doors are always open, so it's up to it's up to them I guess."