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Spoiler Alert: Josh Charles Explains Exit From 'The Good Wife'

NEW YORK (CBS) - Sunday’s episode of the show "The Good Wife" featured an unexpected twist that has fans of the series reacting deeply.

The character Will Gardner, played by actor Josh Charles, was surprisingly and shockingly killed off from the show after being shot by a client in a courtroom scene.

Social media lit up—people were angry, sad or bewildered by the loss of Will.

As was revealed on "The Late Show with David Letterman," the character’s demise was reportedly due to Charles’ decision not to extend his contract on the show.

“At the end of last year, my contract was up, and I was just kind of ready to move on,” Charles said on the "Late Show."

More shocking than his character’s death, however, may be the fact that Charles’ decision to leave the show was kept a secret so well for over a year.

“It is kind of amazing (that) we’ve been able to keep it a secret for an entire year,” Charles said. “I told some family members that I know could keep a secret — which is a very few.”

"The Good Wife" producers Robert and Michelle King are also explaining the major plot twist, issuing a letter to fans: “We, like you, mourn the loss of Will Gardner. And while Will is gone, our beloved Josh Charles is very much alive and remains an integral part of our family.”

One of the few people who were aware of the direction of the show was actress and fellow co-star, Julianna Margulies.

“I cried. I have known Josh for a long, long time, and when I heard he would be leaving, I called the producers and said ‘how about we try and keep him for at least half of next year, and write his character out’,” Margulies said. “Out of that came this incredible writing.”

While Charles left his role as Will Gardner, he has not left the show entirely, as he is slated to direct an upcoming episode later in the season.

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