Columbus Short’s list of troubles just got longer as the actor just announced he won’t be back on “Scandal” when the hit ABC drama returns for its fourth season.
Short, who has been on the show since season 1, released a statement to the media on Friday that said, “At this time I must confirm my exit from a show I’ve called home for three years, with what is the most talented ensemble in television today. I would like to first thank [‘Scandal’ creator] Shonda Rhimes for the opportunity to work with such an amazing cast. Thank you GLADIATORS, who have supported me throughout my entire career and of course to ABC and Shondaland for allowing me to play such a pivotal role in the ‘Scandal’ series. I have enjoyed every single minute of it. Everything must come to an end and unfortunately the time has come for [Short’s character] Harrison Wright to exit the canvas. I wish nothing but the best for Shonda, Kerry [Washington] and the rest of the cast, who have become like a second family to me in such a short amount of time. For this, I will forever be grateful.”
The option on Short’s contract was not picked up.
Short, who played right-hand man to series star Washington, has had a string of legal problems this year, including an arrest after an alleged bar fight and accusations from his wife of domestic abuse. In mid-April, Short’s estranged wife, Tanee Short, filed for divorce from the actor, obtained a temporary restraining order against him, and sought full legal and physical custody of their 2-year-old daughter.
At the same time Short’s personal life was falling apart, his acting career was higher-profile than ever. “Scandal” gained audience and buzz in its third season, with the season finale grabbing 10.6 viewers. That was the highest-rated episode of the series to date.
Short’s character’s fate was left uncertain in the season finale. When viewers last saw him, he was being held at gunpoint by members of the Secret Service.