Cameron Monaghan Reveals Why He’s Returning to ‘Shameless’

Paul Sarkis/SHOWTIME

Last year, fans of Shameless were shocked to find out that both Emmy Rossum and Cameron Monaghan would be leaving the long-running Showtime series in Season 9. And while Rossum is about to make her exit, it seems like Monaghan wasn’t really ready to say goodbye, after all.

The actor, who played middle brother Ian Gallagher throughout the show’s run, abruptly announced his departure one week before his final episode in October 2018, just midway through the ninth season. Fast forward four months, and Shameless had been renewed for Season 10 with Monaghan coming back as a series regular!

Monaghan opened up about his return to Chicago’s South Side during Gotham‘s TCA 2019 winter press tour presentation. The actor, who appears in Fox’s beloved DC series, revealed that his initial exit from Shameless was a both a creative and “business” decision.

“I’ve renewed [my contract] a number of times and it got to a point where I wanted to step away for creative reasons as well as business, which many other actors had done on the show years earlier,” the actor told reporters, via The Hollywood Reporter,

“I took some time away and talked to showrunner John Wells about possible things we could do with the character in the future and we go to a place both creatively and financially where I felt comfortable coming back. Much of that had to do with what we are going to do with the story. I’m excited to go back and do that.”

The last time fans saw Monaghan’s character Ian, he was getting locked up for his violent “Gay Jesus” protests. However, fans were appeased with his “happy ending” when it turned out that on-again-off-again love Mickey (played by Noel Fisher) was his cellmate. The openly gay character also struggled with symptoms of his bipolar disorder throughout the seasons.

Fisher and Monaghan in Ian’s “final” scene.

Upon the show’s renewal, Monaghan signed a one-year deal to be a series regular, meaning that he’ll back in a full-time capacity. This comes as fans prepare to say goodbye to Rossum’s Fiona, who has been a source of stability for the Gallagher family.

It isn’t clear whether Monaghan will return for Rossum’s departure toward the end of the ninth season, considering her character wasn’t around when Monaghan made his exit. For now. the actor is excited to return and is positive that the remaining Gallaghers can keep the comedy going.

“We’re going to lose that thread and that’s a loss for us, but that being said, I feel like we have enough other characters and storylines that across the board they can absorb it and it won’t feel like too much of a change to the overall fabric of the show,” the actor promised.

Shameless, Sundays, 9/8c, Showtime