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'Melrose Place' serves two eviction notices — um, spoiler alert?

October 22, 2009 |  2:34 pm

MP107a_D0099b.r Whoa, what the hey, "Melrose Place" producers? Did you just spoil the murder mystery revolving around the death of Sydney Andrews? Tell me she did not die in vain! reports that Ashlee Simpson-Wentz and Colin Egglesfield — crazy Violet and stoic Auggie to fans — will be leaving the show. Their last episodes will air in January. 

Is it because they're guilty of Sydney's murder? An excerpt from Michael Ausiello's Q&A with executive producers Todd Slavkin and Darren Swimmer:

What was behind the decision to let Ashlee and Colin go?
Well, we always knew that this murder mystery would end in Episode 12. And we always knew that [Ashlee's] character of Violet would be instrumental in that as a suspect, and [Colin's character of] Auggie as well. And once that murder mystery was solved, she would go on her way. That was the original plan going into the development of the show.

So it was always the plan for Ashlee to leave after Episode 12?
Yes. Because we felt that once the murder mystery was resolved, the tone of the show was going to shift into a much more fun, romantic, sexy, upbeat kind of show, and [her] character would move on.

Same thing with Colin?
Colin was always meant to be the ultimate suspect. And his brooding alcoholic [character] tonally didn’t fit the paradigm moving into post-murder mystery "Melrose Place."

But wait! There's more:

The producers also reveal that the pair's vacancies will be filled with new characters — who perhaps harken to the good ol' days of the original "Melrose."

One's a doctor who Slavkin says is a new resident at the hospital. He'll be someone's roommate. Billy Campbell will also come aboard in a three-episode arc as a love interest for Heather Locklear's Amanda, a "billionaire version of Jonah."

Speaking of Locklear, she'll be around for the long haul. And while Thomas Calabro, a.k.a. the diabolical Michael Mancini, is also here to stay, Leighton may not be around on a regular basis. "With Laura, we would never close the door officially," Slavkin said. "She did her part in the murder mystery. We love her. We think she is gorgeous and a great actress and would love to have her be involved in the future, but there is no plan at the moment."

What do you think? Does this signal a tonal change in the show (like I'm hoping it does?)

— Denise Martin

Photo: Ashlee Simpson-Wentz as Violet Foster, Colin Egglesfield as Auggie Kirkpatrick in "Melrose Place." Photo credit: The CW