Inside Adam Levine's Sudden Exit From 'The Voice' and What's Next for Him

By

Adam Levine shocked his fans on Friday when it was announced that he was leaving The Voice after 16 seasons.

Voice host Carson Daly broke the news on the Today show on Friday and revealed Gwen Stefani -- who competed on seasons nine and 12 of the show -- will replace him next season. The news was definitely a surprise, given that the hit NBC singing competition had already announced earlier this month at the NBC upfronts that Levine would be returning alongside Blake Shelton, Kelly Clarkson and John Legend.

While Levine's departure was unexpected, a source tells ET that 40-year-old Levine hasn't been having fun at The Voice for some time. According to the source, the Maroon 5 frontman had been thinking of leaving the show for years and didn’t want to come back next season. The source says he and NBC came to a mutual agreement for him to leave and that there are no hard feelings. The source adds that it wouldn't be a surprise to see Levine appear in the new season of The Voice in some capacity.

Meanwhile, a second source tells ET that Adam was "burned out" by the show.

"He's outgrown the show," the source says. "He was over it."

Interestingly enough, Levine's fellow coach, 42-year-old Blake Shelton, admitted he didn't know Levine was leaving until a day before the announcement was made. Levine and Shelton's close friendship and playful ribbing of one another was a big part of The Voice, and the two were the only original coaches remaining after CeeLo Green and Christina Aguilera's previous exits.

"Having a hard time wrapping my head around @adamlevine not being at @NBCTheVoice anymore," Shelton tweeted on Friday. "After 16 seasons that changed both of ours lives. I only found out about this yesterday and it hasn’t set in on me yet. Gonna miss working with that idiot."

Clarkson also noted she hadn't been informed until Thursday.

"Found out last night about @adamlevine leaving The Voice & while I get that he’s been doing the show 4 a while & wants to step away, it will be weird showing up 4 work & he’s not there 👀," she tweeted on Friday. "To start an amazing show from the ground up is a big deal!"

Of course, professionally, Levine is still in business with NBC. He's an executive producer on the network's new show Songland -- in which undiscovered songwriters pitch their original creations to top recording artists as well as a panel of well-known music producers in the hopes of creating the artists' next big hits -- though he's not expected to appear on camera. Songland premieres on May 28.

And there appears to be more big changes in Levine's personal life. In January, the Los Angeles Times reported that Levine bought Ben Affleck and Jennifer Garner's former Pacific Palisades home for $32 million. A source told ET on Friday that he sold his Beverly Hills home -- which he and his wife, Behati Prinsloo, bought in 2018 -- to Ellen DeGeneres for $45 million.

Prinsloo has yet to publicly comment on her husband's exit from The Voice. The 31-year-old supermodel -- who shares two daughters with Levine, 2-year-old Dusty Rose and 1-year-old Gio Grace -- recently took a trip back to her home country of Namibia, which she's been documenting on Instagram.

View this post on Instagram

NAMIBIA 🌍 @savetherhinonamibia #etosha

A post shared by Behati Prinsloo Levine (@behatiprinsloo) on

Levine himself took time out on Friday to share a lengthy Instagram message thanking various people he's worked with on The Voice, as well as all the fans, contestants and coaches over the years. Levine noted that it was "time to move on."

"It went on to be a life shaping experience that will be close to my heart forever," he wrote, posting the 2012 Rolling Stone cover of himself with Shelton, Green and Aguilera. "Thank you NBC for signing me up. I am truly honored to have been a part of something I’ll always cherish for the rest of my life. Thank you to every single coach I ever sat in those chairs with. That is shared experience that is singularly ours. We have that for life."

"Thank you Carson Daly for babysitting the musicians and making sure our shoes were tied and we had our lunch boxes," he continued. "You are the backbone of this thing and we appreciate you more than you know. ... And, BLAKE F**KIN’ SHELTON. I couldn’t hide my love for you if I tried. Seriously. I tried. Can’t do it. Our friendship is and always will be one for the books. Whatever this whole surreal experience was, Im just happy I got to experience it with you. You’re my brother for life. Kelly and John, take care of the cowboy and I’m sure I’ll be back to say hi very very soon. So much love to you both. And lastly, to all of the loyal voice fans, there’s literally no show without you guys. For me, it was time to move on. Your support has meant EVERYTHING."

View this post on Instagram

About 8 years ago, Mark Burnett convinced us to sign up for this show where you sit in a big red chair with your back turned away from the singers on the stage. First thank you must go to Mark. ❤️ We had no idea what we were doing or where it was going. After the first day of shooting, I sat there, stunned. I said to myself “theres some magic here. Something is definitely happening.” It went on to be a life shaping experience that will be close to my heart forever. Thank you NBC for signing me up. I am truly honored to have been a part of something I’ll always cherish for the rest of my life. Thank you to every single coach I ever sat in those chairs with. That is shared experience that is singularly ours. We have that for life. Thank you to everyone who supported this long strange and amazing left turn into a place I never thought I’d go. Thank you Carson Daly for babysitting the musicians and making sure our shoes were tied and we had our lunch boxes. You are the backbone of this thing and we appreciate you more than you know. Audrey, thank you for being perhaps the most patient person in all the free world. 4 musicians all at once is a lot. Sainthood is imminent. Thank you to Paul Mirkovich and the band for their ridiculously hard work and learning more songs than maybe any band ever. 😂 Thank you to the people behind the scenes who do the real work and make this machine hum. To the amazingly talented vocalists who competed on the show and blew my mind on a daily basis. And, BLAKE FUCKIN’ SHELTON. I couldn’t hide my love for you if I tried. Seriously. I tried. Can’t do it. Our friendship is and always will be one for the books. Whatever this whole surreal experience was, Im just happy I got to experience it with you. You’re my brother for life. Kelly and John, take care of the cowboy and I’m sure I’ll be back to say hi very very soon. So much love to you both. And lastly, to all of the loyal voice fans, there’s literally no show without you guys. For me, it was time to move on. Your support has meant EVERYTHING. And Lastly, I’d like to thank my manager Jordan for convincing me to take that meeting. 😊 What an amazing ride. Thank you all so much. ❤️ Adam

A post shared by Adam Levine (@adamlevine) on

The Voice also left the door open for Levine to return.

"Our friend and coach Adam Levine made the decision not to return next season," the show's offical Twitter account shared in a message on Friday. "We're going to miss Adam, but The Voice is family and with family it's 'see you soon' never 'goodbye.'"

ET last spoke with Levine earlier this month backstage at The Voice, where he had no issue making his displeasure with the show -- particularly, the cross battles -- known.

"I hated it," he said of the new element of the show in which contestants from different teams compete live. "I hope they change it immediately. I think it sucks. However, you try things and you don't always succeed with them, and that's part of life, and that's a part of having a show this long and we'll figure it all out."

He also bluntly said he didn't care who won the show this season, which ended up being Maelyn Jarmon, who was on Legend's team. Levine explained that the playing field was "pretty even" for a contestant whether he or she wins the show or not.

"I don't care. I'm having fun," he said when asked of the possibility of Shelton winning again this season. "I like to work with these kids, and like, sing, and help them learn how to be better singers and better artists. Whoever wins, it just doesn't matter. Like, at all."

"Everyone is in the same position once the show's over, whether they win or come in 10th or whatever," he continued. "Who cares, you know? That's how I feel. I'm sure they're gonna love that. But, it's the truth."

Watch the video below for more:

RELATED CONTENT:

Blake Shelton and More React to Adam Levine's 'Voice' Exit

Adam Levine Calls Blake Shelton His 'Brother for Life' in Heartfelt Message After Leaving 'The Voice'

Adam Levine Is Leaving 'The Voice' After 16 Seasons, Gwen Stefani Is Returning

Related Gallery