Nina Dobrev Leaving The Vampire Diaries after Finale

Its goodbye to Elena (Nina Dobrev) during Thursday’s season six finale of The Vampire Diaries.

“I think people need to remember that this wasn’t a last-minute decision,” Kat Graham tells. “This was a decision that was made like two seasons ago. So I think if people keep that in mind, they won’t feel so shocked. This was just something that was never shared with everyone.”

However Elena survives or not, the show will be without Dobrev next season — a fundamental change for the long-running CW drama.

Nina Dobrev is a Bulgarian Canadian actress and model. She played the role of Mia Jones, the single teenage mother, on Degrassi: The Next Generation, from the show’s sixth to ninth season (2006–2009). Since 2009 she has starred as Elena Gilbert on The CW’s supernatural drama, The Vampire Diaries.

“The whole six years, I always respected Julie Plec‘s opinion,” Dobrev told in a statement. “What she does is for the best of the show and the characters … it’s a beautiful episode, a tribute and a sad goodbye.”