It was announced on Monday that the 37-year-old actress would not be returning in her role as Detective Kate Beckett for Castle’s ninth season, a decision made by ABC and ABC Studios, according to Deadline.
“Kate Beckett has been a beloved character on our hit series Castle for the past eight years," ABC said in a statement to ET. "We are grateful for Stana Katic’s talent and dedication to the series and we hope to continue our relationship."
Katic responded to the news in a statement on Monday, saying, "Rather than 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.”
The actress’ co-star and on-screen bestie, Tamala Jones, who played medical examiner Dr. Lanie Parish, will also not be returning for the show’s ninth season, and the news of the casting shake-up has sparked outrage among fans as well as those closest to the show.
Castle creators and real-life spouses Andrew Marlowe and Terri Edda Miller, who stepped down as showrunners last year, also expressed their shock on Twitter. Marlowe wrote, "Heartbroken. There are no words. #nmc."
Nathan Fillion, who played Katic’s on-screen husband and partner, mystery writer Richard Castle, spoke out about the news on Twitter on Tuesday.
"Stana has been my partner all this time and I thank her for creating the character of Beckett who will live on for all of us as one of the greatest police officers on television," he wrote. "I wish her well, and have no doubt she will succeed in everything she pursues. She will be missed."