The morning after her beloved character, Emma Swan, married Colin O'Donoghue's Captain Hook during a special musical episode, Morrison posted on Instagram that Season 6 would be her last as a series regular on the show. Morrison, O'Donoghue, Lana Parrilla, and Robert Carlyle all entered contract negotiations in the event of a Season 7 renewal back in March, with Morrison being the first to officially make a decision either way.
"As I reached the end of my six-year contract on Once Upon a Time, I was faced with a significant decision," Morrison wrote. "ABC, Eddy Kitsis, and Adam Horowitz very generously invited me to continue as a series regular. After very careful consideration, I have decided that creatively and personally, it is time for me to move on."
Morrison added that she'll appear in one episode next year if ABC renews the show, and in a statement sent to TVLine, Once producers Kitsis and Horowitz said, "The past six years of collaborating with Jennifer as Emma Swan have been truly magical. Watching her breathe life into Emma, she accomplished more than we could have dreamed possible -- she gave life to a brand-new Disney Princess, filled with strength and intelligence and an incredible closet full of red leather jackets.
"We'll miss seeing her every day, but her imprint upon Once Upon a Time is indelible. She will always be a part of the show and its heart and soul."
With many of the cast members' contracts expiring at the end of Season 6, Kitsis and Horowitz planned ahead for any potential exits. May 14's two-part season finale will serve as a reset of sorts, with two new characters -- Andrew J. West's "strong yet vulnerable" leading man and Alison Fernandez's "precocious 10-year-old with a constant twinkle of mischief in her eye" -- joining the series as new potential leads before the end of the night.
"Any changes that we have to accommodate have been accommodated," Kitsis said. "We planned this finale from the beginning of the year, so whoever stays and whoever goes ... all those questions have already been dealt with. The audience does not have to fear [anything feeling] incomplete."
Once Upon a Time's Season 6 finale will air on Sunday, May 14 at 8/7c.