No matter how enjoyable or satisfying playing a character may be, reality gets in the way for everyone, and actors are no exception. Some feel like they’ve gotten as far with the role as they can, and other times they need to move on for the sake of their career goals, just like Arrow’s Emily Bett Rickards.
In other cases, the management intervenes and takes the choice away from the actor. Now let’s take a look at why Emily Bett Rickards, who played Oliver Queen’s longtime love interest, left the superhero show Arrow.
Just weeks after the announcement that the show’s eighth season would be its last, Emily told fans that the final truncated installment would occur without her character Felicity Smoak. In what has to be a pretty unique way of spreading this shocking news, the actress made it known to her followers with a rhyming poem on her Instagram page.
“I’ll keep her in my heart forever, and I hope you can too because she wouldn’t be alive if she wasn’t for all of you.”
A couple of months later, she was blunt about not wanting to return for the series finale.
“I don’t know if anyone is going to like what I’m saying, but I feel like Felicity has served her time. We knew this would come for a while, for over a year, so everything is exactly what we wanted to happen.” .
Arrow executive producer and showrunner Bet Schwartz and co-creator, executive producer Greg Berlanti, said they are “heartbroken” to see Emily leave the series. Her longtime on-screen partner, Stephen Amell as Oliver Queen, also paid her a moving tribute and said goodbye to her in the best way, fully supporting the decision the actress made.
No matter how much fans lament over the change decision or how hard a studio might fight to keep actors on board, sometimes the real people bringing iconic roles to life just can’t go on. Fortunately for fans of Felicity, Emily apparently changed her mind. While absent for most of the show’s final season, Felicity reunites with Oliver in the afterlife in the finale. Although her appearance was only limited to a few scenes, she gathered all of Oliver’s family and friends for a proper recap of his history in the Arrowverse.