According to CNN, Lori Loughlin’s character has been written out of Hallmark’s When Calls the Heart. Season 6 premiered May 5th and 6th in a 2-night special event, and Lori’s character did not make an appearance. It has been confirmed that the actress has been written out of the show after she and her husband, Mossimo Giannulli, faced charges in the college admissions scandal.
Although both have pleaded not guilty to charges that they allegedly paid $500,000 to a fake charity to allegedly get their daughters into USC, Loughlin’s career might forever be tainted. The couple was also charged with fraud, as well as conspiracy to commit money laundering, both of which could earn a prison sentence of up to 20 years.
The first episode of season 6 included Elizabeth Thatcher (Erin Krakow) writing to her friend and describing the changes that have occurred in Hope Valley. This letter also included references to Abigail Stanton, Loughlin’s character, who owned the local cafe, as well as her son Cody (Carter Ryan Evancic). It was explained that Stanton was away due to her mother being ill. “True to her nature, Abigail wasted no time in rushing off to care for her,” stated Krakow’s voiceover. “Abigail is much more than a friend, she’s family.” Thatcher added that she would “miss her and Cody deeply, we all will, but we must get by as best we can … ” It is possible that this statement was made as a reference to Loughlin, herself, as Hallmark producer Brian Bird released a statement on social media with similar sentiments back in March:
“#Hearties, thank you for your love, support, and patience these last several days as we have all been preoccupied with the news about Lori Loughlin and her family, and the decisions our colleagues at the Hallmark Channel USA needed to make. As you can imagine, everyone involved with When Calls the Heart was surprised by these developments, so we hope you can forgive us for initially staying silent while we sorted through how to respond.”
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The statement included a reassurance to fans that the show would not be cancelled:
“As for the show itself, we know millions of fans are on pins and needles wondering what will happen now. Let us reassure you, When Calls the Heart has always been bigger than the sum of its parts, and it HAS NOT BEEN CANCELED. With the full support of the network, we have gone on a creative hiatus to do some retooling on the remaining Season 6 episodes. That process has already begun. Hope Valley will return to your TV screens as soon as we can bring the episodes to you.”
Additionally, season 7 has been announced to air next year without Loughlin’s character.
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#Hearties, @erinkrakow has some incredible news to share… When Calls the Heart has been renewed for Season 7! 7️⃣ ❤️ Don’t miss the return of Season 6 with a special two-night back-to-back premiere event on Sunday, May 5 and Monday, May 6 at 8pm/7c. We can’t wait to return to Hope Valley with you!
Crown Media had released a statement back in March after Loughlin had been indicted explaining their cutting of ties with the actress.
“We are saddened by the recent news surrounding the college admissions allegations. We are no longer working with Lori Loughlin and have stopped development of all productions that air on the Crown Media Family Network channels involving Lori Loughlin, including Garage Sale Mysteries, an independent third-party production.”
Season 6 of When Calls the Heart airs Sundays on the Hallmark Channel at 8pm/7c.