Warning: the text below contains spoilers for WednesdayChicago Medend of season. Proceed at your own risk!
Chicago Medsays goodbye to one of the original cast members: Nicka Gehlfussa, who played Dr. Will Halstead since the series premiere left the NBC drama at the end of Season 8 on Wednesday - and his departure was accompanied by an unexpected romantic encounter!
In the episode, Will and Grace sabotage the faulty OR 2.0 technology while repairing Jack Dayton's hernia, but Will takes full responsibility for the incident, prompting him to resign from the hospital. He then took a surprise flight to Seattle, where he was reunited with his ex-fiancée Natalie Manning (former series regular Torrey DeVitto) and their son Owen.
“I will never let you go,” Natalie told Will after he expressed some doubts about how long she wanted him to stay.
Gehlfuss' story with the #OneChicago franchise continuespathReturn: The character of Will was first introduced duringchicago policethe second season in March 2015 as the doctor, brother of Jay Halstead (played by Jesse Lee Soffer). He then appeared in a Season 3 episode.fire in chicagowho served as a planted pilotZ, before moving on to a medical spin-off with the series premiere in November 2015.
Below, Gehlfuss talks about his decision to leave the show, why Will and Natalie want to be together, and whether Jay Halstead's departure influenced Will's choice.
TVLINE|What influenced your decision to leaveZ? And when did you know it was time?
Well, it was a difficult decision, but I felt, maybe a few months ago, that I was getting to the point where I would take Dr. Halstead as far away as he could. A tough decision because obviously over the last eight years I've grown up with a fantastic group of people who have become like family really. We use that word a lot, but it's the only one that makes sense, and it's also a community of artists. And so I took root in this city. Chicago was never on my radar and it became home. So it's hard to think about leaving something that's so comfortable... [When] an actor gets involved in this profession, we're attracted to diversity, and eight years is a long time with a character, and I felt like I'd gone as far as I could. I could with him and it really was.
TVLINE|When you briefed the producers, did you have any idea how you wanted Will to turn out? What conversations did you have with Andy [Schneider] and Diane [Frolov] about that?
First I called [executive producer] Dick Wolf, then I spoke to [executive producer] Peter Jankowski, Andy and Diane, and they asked me if I had any ideas, and I had nothing. I said, "Whatever makes the most sense to you. AndI couldthey want to keep the opportunity to return for big events or in any other meaningful role" and everyone felt it was appropriate. So the idea of killing Will or going in a blaze of glory, as Peter Jankowski joked, was not something we were going to do. This universe has gotten so big and these shows are going to go on for a long time and who knows what will make sense in the future. We all wanted to keep that opportunity and I was happy that they were on the same side.
TVLINE|What was your reaction when you found out that Will was going to leave and reunite with Natalie in Seattle?
It made sense for the reasons he was leaving, and it made sense for the way he went about it. The name William means protector or protection. This is exactly how he treats his patients. And yes, when he took the blame on 2.0 and blew it during the IPO, he was protecting Grace. He also protected Crockett by not even allowing him to participate in Sabotage 2.0, so it's true that Will's mod is there.
Will and Natalie closed the circle. I think Will was looking for elements of Natalie in all the relationships that followed the breakup. He never actually beat her, so putting the two together and giving fans closure made perfect sense. It was a beautiful moment that [we managed] to do. It was great to see Torrey. We immediately fell into the rhythm of work, as if we had no time off.
Of course, the game was exciting. The last scene I shot was saying goodbye to all the EDs, and obviously it was a very emotional day, but a beautiful one at the same time.
TVLINE|Did you always imagine in the back of your mind that he would end up with Natalie?
I thought maybe Natalie desperately needed it, her life was in danger and Will wouldn't be involved because he's very close emotionally, and he went and did something that got him fired or something. Will can be counted on to go against the grain and shake things up with the best of intentions. It's funny actuallyfezsee Natalie in her production. I think what was great is that Natalie is the cherry on top of how they decided to write him, because it's still very much up to Will, without Natalie being the center of it, I would say. It was great for Will to be able to make this decision on his own and have the experience of seeing the direction of the hospital.
TVLINE|We've seen Will have multiple love interests over the seasons. We've seen him grow closer to Grace this season. There was a suspicion that maybe he and Hannah could get together. After all, why do you think Natalie was the right person for Will?
It's so funny because when I hear you say that, I almost think, as actors, what it was like to play alongside Torrey. There was a chemistry between us that undoubtedly made its way into the story, and I think the writers scrapped the story. So there was something about my working together with Torrey that really helped Natalie and Will on the site and probably informed the writers about it. We had a lot of fun working together.
I think Will is a family man at heart. He's a nice guy and never needs to sleep around or have too many one-night stands. I mean, he was exploring, but he was always a nice guy, and I think he always saw himself as part of the family with Natalie and Owen, really.
TVLINE|What do you think Will's future holds, professionally and personally? Will he still be a doctor?
I think that's what we're hinting at that he's moving to Seattle to possibly apply for an ER job, and maybe he already has it and we just don't say it out loud. I don't think he did what he was born to do. You basically move out and start a family and a new job in a new place.
I think the other thing about why Will and Natalie were so good to each other is that they really challenge each other and they're both brilliant minds in different fields of medicine. They were able to let it all out, be completely themselves, even some of their flaws, and it really made them better.
TVLINE|Both Halstead brothers left Chicago this season. Do you think Jay's absence from Will's life affected his willingness to move on, even if we didn't see it on screen?
Yes, I think so, because they are basically orphans. Both of their parents were gone, and when their father died, they were really all that was left. So this bond between brothers when it gets distant, let's just say because it doesn't exist. I know they keep in touch, but it's not at home anymore... I think so.
TVLINE|What will you miss most about performing or playing Will?
As for the show, I will definitely miss the people. We were successful and I will never forget that time in my life or the people I worked with. I was very lucky to start with such a wonderful group of people. This program has changed my life for the better. I remember getting a call back in November 2014 and I was literally making a dinner table and having them all over Los Angeles and after that call I said yes and I had no idea I was going to do 163 episodesChicago Med. If you had told me that, I would never have believed you. I did 163 episodesChicago Med, 21 episodesfire in chicagoi 18 zDPfor 202 collective episodes of #OneChicago. Eight years is two degrees. Maybe that means I now have a PhD in television. I learned so much, grew so much and I will never forget what a powerful experience it was to grow in a group and with a group. My favorite part of acting is how it makes me a better person. Everything I learned as an actor can be applied directly to my personal life. And it's not just about the craft, it's about the people you experience it with.
Playing Will Halstead, I'll always be amazed at the unpredictability of what he'll do to ensure his patients' protection. I love that he was a wild card, but with that wild card he always had a good heart. He was never malicious. I loved playing his flaws, which are so relative. He struggled — and probably never fully learned his lesson — keeping his personal belongings away from work.
This is also where I need a moment because I'm not active on social media anymore and I'd like to say directly to the fans: It's no secret that without you we wouldn't have work. One of the most important things we can give each other is our time, so we thank you all for your time and support. I am so flattered by the number of people who have come to me to say something positive about #OneChicago and my work. This is the best confirmation of the contract between the audience and the narrator. While Will Halstead is leaving, #OneChicago is not, and #OneChicago fans can enjoy the seasons to come.
#OneChicago fans, rate the season finale below and share your reactions to this latest release in the comments!
If you like TVLine, you'll love our email notifications about what's new!Click here to subscribe.
Did Nick Gehlfuss leave Chicago Med? ›
Gelfuss recently opened up about Dr. Halstead's decision to leave Chicago Med and the personal reason he has for exiting the One Chicago universe. “It was a difficult decision, but ultimately, I felt I'd taken Dr. Halstead as far as I can go with him," Gehlfuss tells Variety.Is Dr. Halstead leaving Chicago Med for good? ›
Original "Chicago Med" star Nick Gehlfuss has made his final appearance on the series. On the Season Eight finale, Gehlfuss' character, Dr. Will Halstead, handed in his letter of resignation to Sharon Goodwin (S. Epatha Merkerson) after he made a few risky choices in the hospital.Does Will Halstead get hurt? ›
He is not seriously injured, but Jay is shown to be very worried about him, immediately saying "tell me you're not in there" when Will calls him from inside the building. In When To Let Go, after being caught in an apartment fire and admitted to Chicago Med, Will and Jay's father Pat died.Is Will Halstead older than Jay? ›
The writers are usually good about keeping to the facts and character bios they established earlier in the show, but at some point it was decided that the ages of the two Halstead boys would flip. As of 2022, Jay is the younger brother and Will is the older brother.Why did Dr Downey leave Chicago Med? ›
While it may appear that decision for Donnell to leave was mutual, his time on "Chicago Med" reportedly came to an end because the showrunners had nothing left for him. "The cast departures stem from creative reasons related to the characters' story evolution," sources told Deadline at the time.Why did Robin Charles leave Chicago Med? ›
After Season 3 of "Chicago Med," Mekia Cox left her role as Robin Charles primarily due to being promoted to series regular on ABC's "Once Upon a Time" (per Us Weekly).Who married Will Halstead? ›
Will and Natalie became a Med power couple, leading Will to ask Chicago P.D.'s Jay Halstead (Jesse Lee Soffer) for their mother's engagement ring. We had a wedding in the works! Season 4 of Chicago Med kicked off with an engaged Natalie and Will, but they found rocky terrain quickly.Who is leaving Chicago Med season 8? ›
Nick Gehlfuss is hanging up his lab coat. The actor, who has portrayed Dr. Will Halstead on all eight seasons of “Chicago Med,” has exited the series, making his final appearance on Wednesday night's Season 8 finale.What happened to Dr Halstead after getting hit in the head? ›
Will Halstead (Nick Gehlfuss) continued to get knocked around in this episode, brawling with the evil doctor and getting himself a head wound as a result. But even though Will was seen with a very large amount of blood on his head, he was quickly fine and running around to finish manufacturing a cure for the bacteria.Does Dr Halstead on Chicago Med wear a wig? ›
“Interestingly enough, my character on the show already wears a wig!” It's not yet clear whether the Med writers plan to incorporate Barrett's battles into the show, given that the character has also had to contend with a cancer diagnosis, or is simply going to bypass it in favor of other storylines.
Does Natalie come back to Chicago Med? ›
So is Natalie Manning coming back to Chicago Med for good? The answer is no. In an interview with Variety after the Chicago Med Season 8 finale, Nick Gehlfuss, who plays Will, confirmed that Natalie's cameo was just a one-time appearance for Will to be written out of Chicago Med with a happy ending.Does Jay Halstead marry Lindsay? ›
Jay Halstead is a former member of the CPD Intelligence Unit and partner of his wife, Detective Hailey Upton.What actors are no longer on Chicago Med? ›
Popular on Variety
Both Guy Lockard and Sarah Rafferty, who portrayed Dr. Dylan Scott and Dr. Pamela Blake, respectively, are leaving NBC's “Chicago Med,” Variety confirms. Additionally, Yaya DaCosta, who exited the show in 2021 after six seasons, has returned as April Sexton.
Why did April Sexton leave Chicago Med? Viewers bid farewell to April in the Chicago Med Season 6 finale after she was accepted into a Nurse Practitioners program.Who is no longer on Chicago Med? ›
The fall finale of NBC's Chicago Med saw two more characters leave the show. Viewers bid farewell to long-term characters April Sexton (Yaya DaCosta) and Dr. Ethan Choi (Brian Tee) in the series finale, with the final episode hinting at what is to come in the future of the staff at the Gaffney Chicago Medical Centre.Who is Dr Rhodes's love interest? ›
In Season 3, Connor continues to attempt balancing his work with caring for his girlfriend, Robin Charles.Who is Dr Connor Rhodes love interest? ›
Connor and Ava
Connor Rhodes (Colin Donnell) and Dr. Ava Bekker (Norma Kuhling). At first, the duo does nothing but pick at each other. Ava starts to develop feelings for Connor first, and, when he considers leaving, sleeps with his father to secure funding for a hybrid operating room.
At the end of season 2, she begins showing symptom of psychosis, and is originally diagnosed incorrectly with schizophrenia. The cause of her symptoms is later diagnosed to be a benign mediastinal teratoma, which is successfully removed by surgery.Who does Natalie marry in Chicago Med? ›
Phillip Davis | Chicago Med Wiki | Fandom.Was Maggie replaced in Chicago Med? ›
Marlyne Barrett, who plays Nurse Maggie Lockwood on NBC's Chicago Med, will remain with the Dick Wolf medical drama as she has signed a new multi-year deal with the hit series.
Who is the new Maggie on Chicago Med? ›
Marlyne Barrett plays Maggie Lockwood, a charge nurse at Gaffney's emergency department, who made her debut on Chicago Med in season 1. In an interview with NBC in 2022, Kristen Hager, who plays Dr. Steven Hager, revealed that the cast of Chicago Med had to undergo medical training for the series.Who does Dr Halstead end up with? ›
she mused, calling him "a constant source of irritation and a constant source of inspiration." Following a tearful farewell with the staff, Halstead headed to Seattle and reunited with his former love, Dr. Natalie Manning (Torrey DeVitto, who left the show in the season 7 premiere), and her son Owen.Does Dr Manning get her memory back? ›
Manning's ability to do her job well. They also confirmed that De. Manning's memory will return and the audience will find out what she was planning on telling Dr. Halstead before the crash.What is the last episode for Jay Halstead? ›
While Jesse Lee Soffer made his final run as Detective Jay Halstead in Season 10, Episode 3 ("A Good Man"), the actor is returning later on in the season.Will Jay Halstead come back? ›
Jesse Lee Soffer Says He's 'Not Opposed' to Returning and Directing Chicago P.D. Again. The actor, who played Detective Jay Halstead until Season 10, returned behind the camera for Season 10's "Deadlocked."Does Maggie wear a wig in Chicago Med? ›
Barrett has been able to return to work, and said because her character on Chicago Med wears a wig, there is no issue with her appearance.Is Natalie Dormer wearing a wig? ›
However, she's actually a brunette. As Margery Tyrell, Natalie Dormer isn't the only actress who hides her hair under a wig.Does Wendy wear a wig on Chicago Fire? ›
Fans of Chicago Fire have been doing it for several seasons now, as Wendy Seager (Andy Allo) is clearly wearing a wig during her first dozen appearances. Not only is the wig itself obvious, but it's stylistically very different from the hairstyle that Allo sports when she's not on camera. At least, that was the case.Does Natalie have a baby in Chicago Med? ›
She is successful and Natalie is able to give birth without surgery, but the baby is initially not breathing and has to be resuscitated. However, the baby is successfully revived and determined to be a perfectly healthy boy, who Natalie names Owen.Do Halstead and Upton break up? ›
Hailey Upton and Jay Halstead's ending was actually similar to a couple on Chicago Fire. But theirs wasn't as heartbreaking and had closure. Jay Halstead's (Jesse Lee Soffer) and Hailey Upton's (Tracy Spiridakos) breakup was similar to another couple in the Chicago PD universe.
Do Halstead and Erin break up? ›
Their relationship is solid till season 4 when Jay's ex-wife comes back to Chicago and Erin is disappointed that he didn't tell her about this marriage. They decide to give each other some space, which eventually leads to their break-up.Why did Jay and Hailey get married? ›
As the FBI investigation into Roy Walton's death heats up, Jay does everything he can to protect Hailey and once the case is put to rest, he comes home and asks Hailey to marry him immediately. A Way Out ends with Jay and Hailey getting married and enjoying each other's presence.What episode does Halstead get hurt? ›
When His Friend Took a Bullet Instead of Him in "The Weigh Station" We learned early on that hard-hitting emotional trauma wasn't something Chicago P.D. was afraid of exposing us to, and the third episode of season 2, "The Weigh Station," was no exception.What episode of Chicago Med does will get hurt? ›
We're Lost in the Dark.What episode does Dr Halstead get hurt? ›
Love Hurts is the twenty-third and final episode of Season 2 of Chicago Med. It aired on May 11, 2017.What episode does Dr Halstead get paralyzed? ›
"Chicago Med" Mountains and Molehills (TV Episode 2018) - IMDb.What season does Dr. Halstead leave? ›
This character exit is a tough one for fans to accept. Emotions were high for many reasons during the Chicago Med Season 8. finale. One of them was because fans bid farewell to Dr. Will Halstead (Nick Gehlfuss), who's been saving lives on the show since Season 1.What episode does Dr Halstead get fired? ›
Another doctor has left the E.D. On Wednesday night's season 8 finale of Chicago Med, Dr. Will Halstead (Nick Gehlfuss) decided he'd had enough, and, at the same time, may have wound up with everything he'd ever wanted.What happens to Danny in Chicago Med? ›
During the conversation, he begins to throw up from heroin withdrawal. Danny is found dead a short time later. He was beaten to death, presumably by his pimps/captors who he ran back to after he had no where to stay.Who paid the ransom in Chicago Med? ›
But ultimately, it was Dr. Isidore Latham (Ato Essandoh) who solved the problem by paying the ransom—not that Goodwin will ever know. And the bulk of the story was actually about relationships. Goodwin had to meet her ex-husband's new girlfriend, while Dr.
What happens to Dr. Halstead and Natalie? ›
She was let go, and, according to the season 7 premiere, decided to move to Seattle to be with her family. Before she left, she urged Halstead to get his job back, which kickstarted the subplot involving Goodwin and VasCom.Why did Halstead leave show? ›
"We all really wanted to do justice for Halstead's character as best we could—to who he's been for the show— we really wanted to make that decision to leave his own decision. For it to come from him," she says. "It felt important to keep him alive and keep him out in the world trying to do good.What episode does Jay Halstead come back? ›
The actor, who played Detective Jay Halstead until Season 10, returned behind the camera for Season 10's "Deadlocked."Does Halstead come back in season 10? ›
Jay Halstead. In August, he confirmed that the 10th season would be his last, appearing in the first three episodes. The character was written off the show during the Oct. 3 episode, when Jay decided to resign from Intelligence, say goodbye to his wife (played by Tracy Spiridakos) and take an army job in Bolivia.