Why Shannen Doherty Left ‘Charmed’

Shannen Doherty wearing a black top on the red carpet.

By Brianna Morton |

Shannen Doherty wearing a black top on the red carpet.

(Getty Images)

Shannen Doherty’s sudden exit from Charmed left audiences stunned. Some suspected there was behind-the-scenes drama between Doherty and castmate Alyssa Milano that explained the hasty departure. Though that assumption wasn’t far off from the truth, it didn’t tell the complete story of why Doherty’s character was killed off.

Though Charmed was about sisterhood and the bonds of family, two of the onscreen sisters, Doherty and Milano, famously clashed. The tension between the two actresses reached its peak during the show’s third season. During that time, Milano admitted to E! News that they’d sometimes refuse to speak to each other unless it was absolutely necessary. “There were times when I’d come in and say, ‘Good morning, Shannen,’ and she didn’t say anything to me. And there were times when she’d come in and say, ‘Good morning, Alyssa,’ and I wouldn’t say anything to her.”

Shannen Doherty seems to blame Alyssa Milano

Doherty never specifically said Milano was part of the reason for her departure from the show, though she did hint at it during an interview with Entertainment Tonight. “There was too much drama on the set and not enough passion for the work,” Doherty explained. “You know, I’m 30 years old and I don’t have time for drama in my life anymore.”

Doherty then insisted that fellow cast member, Holly Marie Combs, had nothing to do with any of the “drama” on set. “I’ll miss Holly a lot and that’s really the only thing I want to clear up. She is one of my best friends and I love her dearly. And there were never ever ever any problems between the two of us, and we will always be pals,” Doherty said. Doherty and Milano eventually made up with one another in 2015 after Doherty first announced she’d been diagnosed with breast cancer. Doherty recently revealed that she’s been diagnosed with stage 4 breast cancer.

There was more than just a feud going on behind the scenes

Though Milano and Doherty clashed behind the scenes, their relationship issues weren’t the only reason behind Doherty’s sudden exit. Doherty was rumored to be frustrated with the show’s direction by the third season. Charmed’s creator, Constance M. Burge, also departed in the third season for that reason, citing the fact that the show focused more on the Halliwell sisters’ love interests rather than their relationship with each other.

Doherty’s relationships with her cast members have long been a matter of speculation. Gossip Cop recently covered the troubles Doherty had with her Beverly Hills: 90210 costars. She and Jennie Garth once got into a physical confrontation with each other on set. The actresses later made up and starred in the reboot, BH90210, though the series has since been cancelled.