Shock for the fans of “The Handmaid’s Tale”: Alexis Bledel has announced her departure from the series.

Alexis Bledel (40) will no longer be seen in the fifth season of the US series “The Handmaid’s Tale”. The actress explained this in a statement available to “Variety”. It said: “After much deliberation, I felt that I had to retire from ‘The Handmaid’s Tale’ at this point. I am forever grateful to Bruce Miller for writing such truthful and meaningful scenes for Emily and Hulu, MGM, the cast and crew for their support.”

Bledel has been part of The Handmaid’s Tale since the first season in 2017. She received four Emmy nominations for her portrayal of the maid Emily Malek (Ofglen). In 2017, she won the award for Outstanding Guest Actress in a Drama Series.

That’s what The Handmaid’s Tale is about

“The Handmaid’s Tale” is based on the 1985 novel of the same name by author Margaret Atwood (82). The TV adaptation, created by Bruce Miller, is set in a dystopian future. Nuclear disasters have changed the world. In America, the government was overthrown and replaced by a totalitarian, Christian fundamentalist regime. The state is now called Gilead. Women no longer have any rights here, they are not allowed to work or read, and they mainly have to fulfill a biological purpose: to bear children. Because fertility is rare in the world.

In Gilead, therefore, all women who were still fertile were rounded up and subjected to the regime. As maids, they become the property of high-ranking members of the regime in order to become pregnant by them. In addition, the women get new names.

In the current, fourth season (including on Amazon Prime Video), Emily joins forces with the main character June (played by Elisabeth Moss, 39) and other women to take revenge on Gilead.

It is not yet known when the fifth season will start. They had already been announced by Disney and the US streaming service Hulu in December 2020.