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EXCLUSIVE: Tracee Ellis Ross on Leaving 'Reed Between the Lines'

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Tracee Ellis Ross

Last week Tracee Ellis Ross broke the news that she won't be returning to the second season of BET's family comedy Reed Between the Lines. Until now, the reason for her exit has been a mystery and left many wondering, What went wrong?

ESSENCE.com caught up with the former Girlfriends actress who revealed the timing became an issue when she was offered the opportunity to work with another network.

"It was that BET hadn't decided if they were picking up the show yet or not," says Ross. "During that time when they didn't know, I was offered a really amazing pilot for NBC, and BET graciously allowed me to go and do it."

Ross says from there things got tricky. "Then the timing got complicated and there was a need to move forward. [BET] had to figure out how to deal without me because I wasn't available. But it's not because I wanted to leave."

The natural-haired maven tells us that things happen for a reason. Despite the casting changes and the fact that the NBC pilot she filmed was not picked up, she appears to be in good spirits. "I love Reed Between the Lines, I believe in it. There is a chance I'll go back, always. There's nothing weird about it."

When the show returns next July, its characters Carla (played by Ross) and Alex (Malcolm-Jamal Warner) will be separated, with Carla moving to Los Angeles to pursue her career and Alex staying behind with the children in Atlanta.

Will you still watch Reed Between the Lines when it returns next summer sans Tracee Ellis Ross?

Reporting By Nicole Marie Melton

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