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Allison Janney says Anna Faris' departure from 'Mom' is a 'huge loss'

Faris won't return for the eighth season of "Mom."
/ Source: TODAY

There will be one major absence when the new season of "Mom" premieres Thursday: Anna Faris, who played Christy, is no longer on the sitcom.

Faris, 43, made the surprise announcement in September that she wanted to pursue other opportunities and would not be returning for an eighth season of the CBS sitcom.

That means her on-screen mom, Allison Janney, is now officially an empty nester.

"It's a huge loss for the show to not have Anna because she was part of creating a character, Christy, that everyone fell in love with, who was so lovable and warm and gullible and funny and we will miss her so much," Janney told "Entertainment Tonight." "I think I'll miss the most, for me, the relationship between Bonnie and Christy, even though that will still continue. But she won't be present. That's what I'll miss."

Allison Janney and Anna Faris on "Mom"
Janney and Faris have played mother and daughter on the sitcom.Michael Yarish / Warner Bros

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Fans will have to tune in Thursday to find out how Christy's absence will be explained. However, Faris' co-stars said her character will still be a part of the show.

"I do want to say that it feels like she's still here because we do talk about the character all the time," Jaime Pressly told "Entertainment Tonight." "And (Janney's) character is always calling her or vice versa. We still hear the name, we still talk about her. She's not gone as far as we're concerned, and we all spent so much time together over the years and love each other and support each other and we all want each other to be happy, so we're happy for her and we miss her no matter what."

"Mom" was renewed for two seasons last year, which will bring the show to at least this season. Season eight began filming in September after the pandemic had shut down television and film sets.

Janney shared a video on Sept. 14 of the cast returning to set and wearing masks.

“Hi, everyone, we are all back at 'Mom' on our first day with the new COVID protocol,” Janney said in the Twitter video. “Everyone’s here and it’s a whole new territory but we’re excited for season eight to begin."