Fans of ABC's long-running series Castle will be happy to learn that the network is eyeing a renewal for Season 9, but two of the show's longtime stars will not be returning. Deadline reports that Stana Katic (Kate Beckett) and Tamala Jones (Lanie Parish), both of whom have been with the show since the beginning, will not be returning. Here's what an ABC spokesperson had to say about the casting departures in a statement.
"Kate Beckett has been a beloved character on our hit series Castle for the past 8 years. We are grateful for Stana Katic's talent and dedication to the series and we hope to continue our relationship. Tamala Jones has also been an integral part of the series and we are grateful she was a part of Castle."
The site reports that series star Nathan Fillion is in negotiations to return to Castle for Season 9, with the network eyeing a shorter 13 episode season. Both Nathan Fillion and Stana Katic signed one-year deals for Season 8, but while Nathan Fillion was approached a few months ago to sign a new deal, Stana Katic was never approached to re-up her contract. Both Stana Katic and Tamala Jones were informed last week that they they will not be asked to come back for Season 9, due to budgetary reasons. Here's what Tamala Jones had to say in a statement.
"I've had so much fun playing the wonderful and unfiltered Lanie over the past eight seasons. I will greatly miss the cast and crew - it's been a privilege getting to work with this incredibly hard working group of people. Thank you to ABC for this opportunity and to the fans for their unwavering support. It's been an incredible journey and I can't wait for what lies ahead!"
Series creator Andrew W. Marlowe left Castle at the end of Season 7, with Alexi Hawley and Terence Paul Winter signing on as the new showrunners. While the show's future hung in the balance, the showrunners filmed two separate endings for the upcoming season finale, one of which is a cliffhanger where both Castle and Beckett's lives hang in the balance. Here's what Stana Katic had to say about her departure.
"Rather then distract from what was an amazing experience, I would just like to say that I'm very grateful to ABC for giving me the opportunity to be a part of a much beloved show. Thank you to the fans."
It isn't known if the upcoming Season 9 will be Castle's final season, and the Season 9 renewal hasn't been confirmed by ABC yet, although we'll likely find out more about the network's plans at their upfront presentation next month.