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Celebs leave their hit TV shows to pursue bigger and better things

By Amy Angelowicz, The Frisky
Katherine Heigl's publicist says she's leaving "Grey's Anatomy" to spend more time with her newly adopted daughter.
Katherine Heigl's publicist says she's leaving "Grey's Anatomy" to spend more time with her newly adopted daughter.
STORY HIGHLIGHTS
  • Claire Danes was the one who wanted "My So-Called Life" to end
  • Mischa Barton has never confirmed she wanted "The O.C." to kill off her character
  • Heigl's publicist says she's leaving the show to spend more time with her daughter
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(The Frisky) -- I know you are really, really upset -- but can you stop crying for a second so we can talk about the fact that Katherine Heigl is finally leaving "Grey's Anatomy?"

Long overdue, as far as I'm concerned. She has been annoying me since day one. How bad can the job really be? Hmmm, let's see. You get paid hundreds of thousands of dollars to show up on set for 12 episodes -- then you get half the year off. Yeah, I think I'd quit too.

Her publicist claims she's out of there because she wants to spend more time with her newly adopted daughter, and that becoming a mother has "changed [her] desire to work full-time." That's sounds like sunshine and moonbeams and all, but the truth is that she's been petitioning to get Dr. Izzie Stevens written off for the last three years. Since her BFF T.R. Knight left, I suspect.

At least we can have some fun imagining how they might get rid of her. Drug overdose? Amnesia? Doctors Without Borders? Sex tape? Fun! Anyway, considering her last few movies were ludicrous rom-coms and she has a rep for biting the hand that feeds her, I'm thinking she may not be too popular in Hollywood after this. Plenty of other celebs have left cushy TV jobs for bigger and better things. Let's see how nine of them fared.

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1. Amanda Seyfried thinks she's too big for the filming schedule of "Big Love." That's why she's leaving the show -- to move back to New York City, pursue her film career, and live life to the fullest by eating spinach and seeds and popping pills. Mazel Tov, Amanda! But we're not sure how this is going to go for you.

2. Fans went crazy when ABC announced that it was canceling "My So-Called Life" after just one season. But then it came out that Claire Danes was the one who wanted the show to end -- she was ready to move on to a film career. She's had some hits, "Romeo & Juliet" and "Shopgirl," but she will always and forever be Angela Chase.

3. She's never confirmed it, but when "The O.C." killed off Marissa Cooper in the season finale of season three, most people assumed it was because Mischa Barton wanted to move on. The show trucked on without her -- for a season. Mischa's career, on the other hand: as dead as Marissa after the car wreck.

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4. Rose McGowan replaced Shannen Doherty when good witch Prue Halliwell was "killed off" of "Charmed." Now she's working her magic on the judges of "Dancing With the Stars." Abracadabra! Save my career!

5. Never thought I'd say this, but I'm actually glad that Tina Fey left "SNL" to go on to write, produce, and star in "30 Rock." Yeah, she's pretty much taking over the industry and making money with much more than her looks.

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6. Hunky George Clooney left "ER" in its fifth season to become the A-list movie star in the front row at the Oscars. A winning move? I'd say yes.

7. Nicollette Sheridan was so desperate to be polished like the jewel that she believed she was that she left "Desperate Housewives." She called the show "complacent," but creator Mark Cherry said her time was up because she had already slept with everyone on the show. Rumor has it that she has a new TV show coming out. Let's see if that jewel shines.

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8. Viewers cried and stuff when Kal Penn's character on "House" committed suicide only to stop crying when they found out he'd accepted a position at the White House. Because it's nobler to actually help people than to play someone who does it on TV.

9. While Kal Penn joined the real White House, Rob Lowe left the fictional one on "The West Wing" because he didn't think there was a place for his character, Democrat Sam Seaborn, anymore. And then he went on to play Republican politico Robert McCallister on "Brothers & Sisters." Politics will eat you alive, man.

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