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The Reason Colton Haynes Left Arrow

MTV’s Teen Wolf and The CW’s Arrow don’t have a ton in common, but they have shared one actor who helped elevate the shows to success. Colton Haynes made his big break into showbiz in his role as hunky lacrosse player Jackson Whittemore on Teen Wolf, then hopped to Arrow to play hunky bad-boy-with-a-heart-of-gold Roy Harper. Haynes moved on from Teen Wolf reportedly over contract disputes, but there have been conflicting stories about what went into his Arrow decision. Now, Haynes has gone on the record to explain why he left the CW hit.

I asked to step away because I cared more about my mental and physical health than my career at the time. I’ve had terminal anxiety my entire life. Physically ill, fainting. I’m 27 years old, and I have an ulcer. I had to step back.

Colton Haynes’ reveal to EW of the reason why he left his job on Arrow is rather brave, all things considered. The young man suffering from terminal anxiety couldn’t have had an easy time sharing this story. As unfortunate as it is that Arrow fans lost Roy, Colton Haynes focusing on his health rather than his career is not something for which he should be blamed. Good for him for choosing himself and his own well-being.

When Colton Haynes left Teen Wolf in 2012, reports indicated that the split was a result of contract disputes that could not be resolved. His character had spent Season 2 turning into a shapeshifting creature called the Kanima after a werewolf bite went wrong. Jackson was written out as having moved to London and Haynes moved on to Arrow. One has to wonder if personal problems also went into the earlier decision.

Colton Haynes was introduced in Season 1 of Arrow as Thea Queen’s love interest, then became a regular as he grew into a sidekick role to her big bro Oliver. His departure at the end of Season 3 was attributed to the end of what had been planned as a two-year arc.

It’s nice to know now that Colton Haynes was able to keep his health troubles private until he was willing to share them with the public. Arrow fans can be reassured that Haynes hasn’t ruled out reprising his role as Roy in the future (and he's been welcomed back to Teen Wolf in the past as well). Roy already returned in Season 4 for a guest appearance, and he left the episode in good enough spirits. He's really the perfect character to drop in and out of the show, so Haynes’ willingness to return means that Arrow fans may be able to look forward to more of Starling City’s original red archer in Season 5.

Only time will tell what’s next for Colton Haynes, but hopefully his health will allow him to take advantage of his next big opportunity. Check out our summer TV premiere schedule to see what you’ll be able to catch on primetime in the near future.

Laura Hurley
Laura Hurley

Resident of One Chicago, Bachelor Nation, and Cleveland. Has opinions about crossovers, Star Wars, and superheroes. Will not time travel.