As part of CBS' most successful current TV franchise, NCIS: New Orleans will likely be around in primetime for a long time. Unfortunately, the hit drama will be heading into the future without one of its main characters. Star Shalita Grant, who plays Special Agent Sonja Percy, will be leaving NCIS: New Orleans before Season 4 comes to a close.

At this point, it's been confirmed that Shalita Grant's final NCIS: New Orleans performance (at least for the foreseeable future) will come in Episode 17, which is set to air on CBS on April 3. It would appear the drama will be taking a brief hiatus soon, since Episode 14 will be airing on February 6. So while fans have another three months or so with Sonja Percy, we're only actually getting four more episodes with her moving forward. I mean, there's always syndicated reruns, but that's not the same.

Thankfully, it doesn't sound like there was any bad blood fueling Shalita Grant's exit from NCIS: New Orleans. According to Variety, both the actress and the producers came to a mutual agreement about Grant departing the show, and everyone was good-natured about it. And as far as straightforward reasoning goes, here's what Grant's manager Didi Rea had to say.

It's just time for a change. This is about moving on to the next great thing.

No doubt some speculation will surface that Shalita Grant's decision to leave NCIS: New Orleans will have something to do with showrunner Brad Kern, who was at the center of a report that he'd been investigated multiple times for workplace misconduct. In previous years, Kern was accused of engaging in sexual harassment, as well as making racially insensitive comments, with the show's human resources department looking into the claims. Steps were reportedly taken to curb that behavior, and Kern remained the showrunner throughout. However, it's been reported that Grant's decision was unrelated to Kern's actions.

An accomplished stage actress, Shalita Grant joined NCIS: New Orleans as Sonja Percy in a recurring capacity during Season 1. She was promoted to series regular that next season, and she's been a big part of the show ever since. Fans will no doubt hope that Agent Percy gets an honorable exit that could still allow for future cameos, as opposed to the show killing her off for dramatic effect. We can't wait to see where the actress turns up next, too.

NCIS: New Orleans airs Tuesday nights on CBS at 10:00 p.m. ET. To see what other new and returning shows will be hitting primetime in the near future, head to our midseason premiere schedule.

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