This week has not been a good one for "Castle" fans, with news breaking that ABC had let go co-lead Stana Katic, as well as fellow original cast member Tamala Jones, reportedly over budgetary reasons. Now, titular star Nathan Fillion has responded to Katic's exit.

In a statement posted to his Twitter account, Fillion called Katic his "partner," and noted that he considers her character, detective Kate Beckett, "one of the greatest police officers on television."

"I wish her well, and have no doubt she will succeed in everything she pursues," the actor's statement continued. "She will be missed."

Fillion's statement also indicated that the actor was optimistic about "Castle"'s future moving forward. Both Katic and Jones were let go ahead of a season nine renewal; should the show get the renewal, ABC is reportedly cutting costs with a shorter episode order.

Deadline has some additional scoop about ABC's curious decision to dismiss Katic, especially if the show will indeed continue (which seems likely, given that Fillion's mention of multiple additional seasons). According to the trade, Fillion and Katic apparently had an acrimonious on-set relationship, which deteriorated to the point where Fillion allegedly requested to work with Katic only two days per week. In a statement to Deadline on Monday, Katic declined to comment on the specific circumstances surrounding her departure.

Season eight of "Castle" -- the last with Katic and Jones -- wraps sometime in May.

[via: Nathan Fillion, Deadline]

Photo credit: ABC/Bob D'Amico