Meghan Markle's Suits exit was planned long before her engagement to Prince Harry.
In an interview with Radio 4's Today, Suits creator Aaron Korsh said he and the writers knew about a year ago that the relationship between his star and Prince Harry was "burgeoning."
"I sort of had a decision to make because I didn't want to intrude and ask her, ‘Hey, what's going on? What are you going to do?' So…collectively the writers, we decided to take a gamble that these two people are in love and it's going to work out," the Suits creator said.
So they decided to plan as if she was leaving the drama after the seventh season.
"What we decided to do was as the season progresses say, 'Look, I would rather have good things happen to Meghan in her life'—which would likely mean her leaving the show," Korsh said. "So let's plan on that and it's much easier to undo that, if it came to it, than to just plan on her staying forever and then finding out she's going to go. And the only way to write a character out like that would be if they got hit by a bus or something."
After the engagement was announced, Korsh tweeted his congratulations.
The day after Prince Harry and Meghan Markle's engagement was announced, USA Network confirmed the actress would be departing the series.
"From all of us at USA Network and Universal Cable Productions, we want to send our most heartfelt congratulations to Meghan Markle and Prince Harry on their engagement. Meghan has been a member of our family for seven years and it has been a joy to work with her. We want to thank her for her undeniable passion and dedication to Suits, and we wish her the very best," USA Network and Universal Cable Productions said in a statement.
Although her exit was long assumed. In their first joint interview, Markle seemingly confirmed she was done with the show. "I don't see it as giving anything up. I just see it as a change," she said. "It's a new chapter, right? And also, keep in mind, I've been working on [Suits] for seven years. We were very, very fortunate to have that sort of longevity on a series…I've ticked this box, and I feel very proud of the work I've done there, and now it's time to work with [Harry] as a team."
Markle played Rachel Zane on the legal drama. Her character has grown professionally and personally over the years, going from paralegal to attorney and coupling up with Patrick J. Adams' Mike.
After the engagement was announced, Adams cracked a joke on Twitter, but followed up with a sweet post, above.
Suits is set to return to USA Network in early 2018.
(E! and USA are both part of the NBCUniversal family.)