Rob Lowe and Rashida Jones are leaving "Parks and Recreation" following the 13th episode of season 6. Hours after Buzzfeed broke the news, showrunner/executive producer Mike Schur has issued a statement confirming the two stars' imminent departure.
"We've been working on their storyline (on and off) for four seasons now, and heading into this year, with the two of them contemplating parenthood, it felt like a natural time to move them into the next phase," he writes.
He adds, "Rashida was one of the very first people we knew we wanted in the cast, and as important as Ann is to Leslie (and vice-versa), she'll certainly never be far from Pawnee. Rob we initially thought we could only have for six or eight episodes, and we couldn't be happier that he will have stuck around for 75."
Calling them "wonderful, funny, committed actors" and "a huge part of the Parks and Rec family," Schur admits, "We absolutely love Rashida and Rob, and will be sad to see them go." He promises a memorable exit for them, teasing, "We think we have a great Pawnee send-off in the works for them."
Jones has been starring on the sitcom since the beginning, while Lowe joined the show in season 2. Their characters, Ann and Chris, are an on-again, off-again couple and were last seen agreeing to have a baby together.
Season 6 of "Parks and Rec" will debut Thursday, September 26 at 8 P.M. on NBC with an hour-long premiere filmed in London. Heidi Klum is set to guest star as a mayor of a small town in Denmark.