Emmy Rossum has recently announced that she will not be returning to Shameless for its ninth season.
She had taken on the lead female role in Shameless, that of the eldest daughter, Fiona, for the last eight seasons, but has now bid farewell to the show.
She took to Facebook to bid farewell to the show, and to her reel family, which had started feel a lot like a real one. She posted an elaborate note on her Facebook, which was heartwarming and quite emotional.
“It’s a hard thing to put into words, feelings. But I am going to try,” she wrote.
“This business is always an adventure, full of travel and opportunities to tell stories. Usually as an actor, every few months, you travel to a new place, start a new project, build a new character, learn new rhythms, new inside jokes with your crew, make new friends,” Emmy continued.
“Until “Shameless” came into my life 8 years ago, I led that kind of transient wonderful life of an actor. And I never realized how much I actually craved the kind of continuity that this show has given me. And given all of us in the crew,” Emmy gushed at the thought of her leaving.
“See, in real life, unlike Fiona, I’m an only child. I never had a big family. Being ensconced in that messy Gallagher family love is something I’d always dreamed of. But even off set, it feels real. We’ve watched the kids grow up into the strong, talented, independent human beings that they are,” she continued.
“I taught Emma to shave her legs. I was there when Ethan learned to drive. Shanola and Jeremy and Joan and Bill danced at my wedding in New York last year. Our fearless leader John Wells thankfully held Sam and me up on those rickety chairs during the hora. I’ve spent the Jewish holy days in temple with David Nevins and his wonderful wife and kids. It really feels like a family,” she added.
Shameless is an American comedy-drama television series, which was developed by John Wells and debuted on Showtime, on January 9, 2011.
It has William H. Macy starring as Frank Gallagher – an absentee single father of six children, the responsibility of raising whom, in the absence of their mother, falls upon the oldest daughter – Fiona, played by Emmy Rossum.
“I know you will continue on without me, for now. There is much more Gallagher story to be told. I will always be rooting for my family. Try not to think of me as gone, just think of me as moving down the block,” she ended her post. “With love, always.”
While Rossum’s decision to quit the series stems from an emotional place, speculations about the reason suggest that it may have something to do with the contract dispute that she had with the show’s producers in the past.
In 2016, the Phantom of The Opera star had to fight with the show’s producuers for her right to be given an equal pay. She was paid less, despite being the female lead, than Oscar nominee William H. Macy, who plays the role of Fiona’s father.
It was her confrontation over this unfair compensation that she had been at the receiving end of, which granted the show a renewal for its eighth season. This renewal was contingent upon the condition that Emily would be paid more than her male-counterpart actor, William H. Macy, to compensate for the gap between the paychecks in the last seven years.
The executive producer, and creator of the show, John Wells, only had kind words to lend to Emmy over her decision to leave the series.
“Emmy Rossum will forever be part of the Shameless family. She has been integral to the show’s success, from her wonderful portrayal of Fiona to her leadership role on set, as well as directing multiple episodes of the series. We are hard at work now creating a season nine finale for Shameless which we hope will provide a Gallagher-worthy sendoff for Fiona that honors the great work Emmy has done. It is always bittersweet when an ensemble member decides to move out of the proverbial house, but our door will always remain open for Fiona to return home for a visit, or to move back in. I look forward to continuing the stories of this wildly unpredictable family and all of us on Shameless will miss Emmy and her wonderful Fiona,” John said in a statement.
The 31-year-old star said goodbye to Shameless in a lengthy post on Facebook, in which she also expressed how she felt about playing the character of Fiona for the last eight seasons of the series.
“The opportunity to play Fiona has been a gift. There are few characters — female or otherwise — as layered and dynamic. She is a mother lion, fierce, flawed and sexually liberated. She is injured, vulnerable, but will never give up. She is living in an economic depression, but refuses to be depressed,” she said. “She is resourceful. She is loyal. She is brave. I knew it the second I read the pilot script, this was different, this was special. I tirelessly prepped the audition with my coach Terry Knickerbocker. I walked to the appointment in the rain so I looked disheveled. During my third audition, when I got the part IN the room, I literally jumped up and down screaming in joyous relief and disbelief. Quite simply, the last eight years have been the best of my life,” Emmy wrote.
With Emmy leaving the show, the dynamics of the Gallagher family will alter a little. The ninth season of the series is currently being filmed, and the viewers will be able to see its first episode on the 9th of September. The season will be divided into two parts: one premiering in September, and the other hitting the TV-screens in January 2019.
It is not just Emmy who is emotional over bidding farewell to Shameless, but the show’s producers and members are also processing the news in a similar manner.
“We were saddened when Emmy Rossum let us know that the upcoming ninth season of Shameless would be her last. But we are filled with an overwhelming sense of joy and gratitude for Emmy’s inspired work on our series, of course in front of the camera but also behind it,” Gary Levine, the president of programming at Showtime Networks, stated. “On behalf of everyone at Showtime and her millions of fans, we thank you Emmy!”
Producers Warner Bros. TV said, “For eight years and more than 100 episodes, Emmy Rossum has delivered a deeply honest, authentic and unflinching portrayal of Fiona Gallagher, one of television’s great characters. We wish her all the best as she explores the next chapter in her career. But before that, we are excited for fans of Shameless to see Emmy and the entire ensemble cast continue the adventures of the Gallagher family in the show’s upcoming ninth season.”