It was a heartbreaking night for ‘Criminal Minds’ fans and fans of Shemar Moore, the actor who played Special Agent Derek Morgan for the past 11 seasons! So, why did he decide to leave? Well, in a way he was ready for ‘grad school.’
Shemar Moore, 45, officially left Criminal Minds after 11 amazing seasons — but why? Was it his choice? Well, he spoke to multiple outlets revealing that after seeing the stars of the show do other things like writing and directing, it made him inspired to do the same — and to in a way, spread his wings further.
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“Matthew [Gray Gubler] started directing, and that inspired Joe [Mantegna]. And that inspired Thomas [Gibson]. And then Kirsten [Vangsness] got inspired [to write], and I supported her. And AJ [Cook] is a mother of two and took time out for her life and came back,” he said, according to TVLine. “It was nice to see everybody growing.” Watch Criminal Minds season 11 by clicking here. Watch the cast say goodbye now!
“I didn’t direct, I didn’t write, but I grew, and I’m leaving because I want to continue to grow as an actor. I’m leaving to see what else I’m capable of,” he said, adding he also wanted to have more of a personal life. “I need balance in my life. I love what I do for a living, I love it from ‘action’ to ‘cut’, but I also want to walk my dogs, travel, get married, have kids. I want balance, and it’s hard to do with the schedule that we have.”
Shemar’s character was written off the show on the March 23 episode when Special Agent Derek Morgan decided to quit the FBI’s Behavioral Analysis Unit to spend more time with his son and his wife Savannah after she nearly died. It was obviously quite shocking to fans of the show — but we’re so happy to see that he’s doing what he needs to do. Plus, he’s been on the show for 11 years. Watch Shemar’s final scene now.
As for what’s next — who knows? For him, he’s not sure. “I want to be bold and I want to see what I’m capable of,” he told TVGuide, adding he looks at his career like school. “The Young and the Restless: eight years. [That was] high school. Criminal Minds: college. Now I’m ready for grad school, a Ph.D., whatever you want to call it. I’m just ready to grow. I just want to leap. And I don’t know where I’m going to land, but I believe that I’m going to land. I’m not leaving to go be a big star. I’m not leaving to go make a bunch of money. I’m leaving because I just creatively want to be fueled and [am] excited to try new things and see what else I’m capable of. But I’m always going to look back and salute.”
Hats off to you, Shemar!