Fans of HBO’s buzzy comedy “Girls” were shocked early April when news broke that Christopher Abbott was departing the series, after two season spent playing Charlie. While a majority of the cast, including creator and star Lena Dunham, remained relatively quiet about the shocker, Allison Williams has finally opened up about it.
Williams, who stars as Marnie, tells TVLine that Abbott’s sudden departure had a “huge effect on our show and [on the character of] Marnie specifically.” In the finale of Season 2, Marnie and Charlie were reunited after spending the year apart, and WIlliams says that, had Abbott stuck around, she believed Season 3 would’ve seen the couple reach the “dissolution of their relationship.”
With that not possible, “it’s almost as if we skipped her third season and have gone on to single Marnie,” Williams says. What will have to be an off-camera split “means that Marnie is now piecing herself back together,” not unlike the trajectory the character experienced in Season 2.
Williams reportedly wishes Abbott well, though she notes, “it’s unfortunate that [he’s] no longer a part of the family.”
“The minute I heard the news, there wasn’t a single doubt in my mind that [the show’s writing staff] would come up with great stuff for Marnie to be doing. And what we’ve done so far and what we’re continuing to do is so excellent,” she adds.
When Abbott abruptly walked away from the series, there were rumors that he and Dunham were butting heads over the direction of the show. At the time, his rep would only confirm his departure, saying, “[Chris] is grateful for the experience of collaborating with Lena, Judd [Apatow], and the entire ‘Girls’ cast and crew, but right now he’s working on numerous other projects and has decided not to return to the show.”