‘Castle’ Star Stana Katic’s Firing Explained by ABC President Channing Dungey

A bumpy ride into the sunset! Castle fans endured plenty of tumult earlier this year, with ABC canceling the crime procedural not long after the announcement that star Stana Katic would not return. Network president Channing Dungey weighed in on how things played out during her presentation at the Television Critics Association's press tour in Los Angeles on Thursday, August 4.

Dungey, who landed her high-powered role in February, was asked by a reporter to explain why it was announced on April 18 that Katic (Kate Beckett) and Tamala Jones (Lanie Parish) were leaving the show at the end of season 8, with ABC then announcing on May 12 that the show had been canceled. The series finale, which ended with a flash-forward to show Castle (Nathan Fillion) and Beckett raising their three children, aired on May 16.

"That's a case where you have things running on two parallel tracks," Dungey said. "We were always very upfront with the studio and the producers about the possibility that we might not be bringing the show back for a season 9. But the studio has to do what they need to do in order to prepare for the possibility of a season 9."

"So they did what they felt what they needed to do in order to be ready should they get the nod," the exec continued. "And ultimately for us at the network, we did not feel that it was the right thing to do to order another season."

Stana Katic and Nathan Fillion on Castle.
Stana Katic and Nathan Fillion on 'Castle.' Richard Cartwright/ABC via Getty Images

Dungy had previously spoken at the network's upfront presentation on May 17 to address the surprise cancellations of both Castle and Nashville. (Nashville later landed at CMT, with a premiere date for new episodes yet to be announced.)

"You have to kind of weigh and measure a lot of different things," Dungey told reporters in May. "And at the end of the day, it didn't feel that — even though Castle and Nashville were wonderful shows for us and good performers for a long time — that the future for us did not necessarily lie in those shows."

Following the news in April that Katic would be exiting, Us Weekly reported that there had been ongoing tension for years between the actress and costar Fillion.   

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