Sad news for Once Upon A Time fans today, as lead star Jennifer Morrison announces her departure from the fairy tale franchise.
After six seasons at the center of the series, she will exit the drama ahead of a potential seventh season, reports EW.
“As I reached the end of my 6 year contract on ONCE UPON A TIME, I was faced with a significant decision. ABC, Eddy Kitsis, and Adam Horowitz very generously invited me to continue as a series regular. After very careful consideration, I have decided that creatively and personally, it is time for me to move on,” Morrison wrote in an announcement on Instagram. “Emma Swan is one my favorite characters that I have ever played. My 6 years on ONCE UPON A TIME has changed my life in the most beautiful ways. I am absolutely blown away by the passion and commitment of the Oncer fans. I am so honored to have been a central part of such a special show.”
Executive producers Adam Horowitz and Edward Kitsis released a joint statement on her exit:
“The past six years of collaborating with Jennifer as Emma Swan have been truly magical. Watching her breathe life into Emma, she accomplished more than we could have dreamed possible—she gave life to a brand-new Disney Princess, filled with strength and intelligence and an incredible closet full of red leather jackets. We’ll miss seeing her every day, but her imprint upon Once Upon a Time is indelible. She will always be a part of the show and its heart and soul. That said, just because Jennifer won’t be back every week doesn’t mean we won’t see our savior again.”
Earlier this year, ABC chief Channing Dungey indicated that the show may get a re-boot with new characters and plots for the seventh season. An idea that has been spoken about by both executive producers, also.
"We understand that this could be the last year,” Kitsis recently said. “We feel like we completed this story and the next chapter of Once Upon a Time will be completely different."
"By the end of the season finale, a lot of what we’ve been doing for the last six years is wrapped up, and we hope in a very satisfying way,” Horowitz added. “Then, we move forward in a way that, at the end of it, hopefully, you’ll see what we’re hoping to do in Season 7.”
Even Morrison spoke about the potential new characters in an interview in February.
“We all want what’s best for the potential future of the show, letting the show have some kind of franchise legs in the future, and letting it be something that lives on as long as possible for the fans, and so whatever incarnation makes that possible is something that I think we’re all going to support,” she said.
We're sad to see the star go from the franchise, but with all this talk of a brand new Once Upon A Time in it's seventh season, we're also excited.
Let us know what you think in the comments!