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Breathe easy, Gleeks: Naya Rivera will be returning to "Glee" for its sixth and final season -- but in a reduced role.

TVLine reports that the actress, who was rumored to have been fired from the show earlier this year, will indeed be back when the series takes its final bow next year. The only catch is that she will be billed as a recurring guest star, not a series regular.

That distinction is not uncommon for longtime members of the "Glee" cast, TVLine notes, and ensemble players such as Amber Riley and Jenna Ushkowitz -- who, like Rivera, have been with the series since its 2009 debut -- have had their contracts amended throughout the show's run while remaining an integral part of the musical dramedy. Just how Santana fits into "Glee"'s swan song remains to be seen, but viewers can now expect the character to pop up at least a handful of times before the show's finale.

Rumors swirled around Rivera back in May that she had been fired by series creator Ryan Murphy after an alleged altercation between the actress and costar Lea Michele on the "Glee" set. Both Rivera's reps and Fox brass denied that claim, with Fox releasing a statement saying that the actress was still under contract with the series.

A season premiere for "Glee" has not yet been set.

[via: TVLine]

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