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Kat Graham is Leaving THE VAMPIRE DIARIES

Another one bites the dust.

The Vampire Diaries had to remake itself in the wake of star Nina Dobrev’s exit last season, and now another core cast member has announced her plans to exit The CW drama. Kat Graham, a.k.a. everyone’s favorite witch Bonnie Bennett, will leave The Vampire Diaries after season eight.

“Season eight will be my last season,” Graham told Us Weekly at the iHeartRadio Music Awards. “I just hope that whatever I do after, the crew can come with me. If the crew can come with me, then we’ll be good. The crew is going to be the hardest thing to let go, because we are a family. But you know what, another season is a whole other year, and we’re going to blow it out.”

The CW and Warner Bros. had no comment about Graham’s announcement.

Bonnie fans can breathe a sigh of relief, though, knowing we’re still going to get a full season with the death-defying witch before we have to say goodbye for good, since The Vampire Diaries is currently airing season seven. That’s a half of a season more than we got with Dobrev once she announced her plans to leave halfway through last season.

So if Graham really does leave the show, what does that mean for Elena (Dobrev)? Fans know that after the villain Kai (Chris Wood) put a “Sleeping Beauty” spell on the two BFFs, their lives were permanently connected. Elena was forced to sleep in a coffin for however long it took Bonnie to die. As soon as Bonnie’s life ended, Elena would wake up again as if no time had passed and live out the rest of her life. It didn’t matter if Bonnie was killed accidentally or on purpose, if she died unexpectedly at a young age, or well into her life years later: her life was tied to Elena’s. If the show kills off Bonnie in season eight, does that mean Dobrev would come back to tie up her love story with Damon (Ian Somerhalder)? Or would Bonnie just choose to move away, and “Delena” fans wouldn’t get the payoff to their favorite couple?

The Vampire Diaries

Graham’s announcement is only the latest in rumors that The Vampire Diaries cast is ready to move on. Cast member Michael Trevino who plays werewolf Tyler announced his exit at the same time as Dobrev last season, although he has returned for an episode here or there this season. There are also rumors circulating of Somerhalder’s plans to exit the series after season eight as well, although executive producer Julie Plec has made it clear that Somerhalder and Paul Wesley—who plays Damon’s brother Stefan—are the show and if either or both of them leave, only then would it end. So while there has been no official confirmation, if there’s any truth to the Somerhalder rumors, there might be an end in sight for The CW’s long-running hit drama.

But don’t start mourning Graham’s exit just yet! With the rest of season seven still to go and all of season eight, she promises that there will be some huge story arcs for Bonnie, who was last seen in the flash forward storyline in a mental hospital three years in the future. Bonnie was agonizing over a “mistake” she made that resulted in losing someone she loved, before it was revealed that she was in a romantic relationship with Enzo (Michael Malarkey).

“There’s some really intense stuff with my character this season,” Graham says. “I think the biggest episodes I’ve ever had are [episodes] 20 [airing April 29] and 21 [airing May 6]. It’s pretty major for the character — huge turns, a lot of stunts and cool shit!”

Are you sad to know that Graham is only sticking around for one more season of The Vampire Diaries? What’s your favorite Bonnie Bennett moment from the series? Hit the comments section below or tweet me your thoughts at @SydneyBucksbaum!

Images: The CW

The Vampire Diaries airs Fridays at 8 p.m. on The CW.

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