Emmy Rossum quits Shameless with emotional Facebook post

Emmy Rossum has announced that the upcoming ninth season of her hit TV show Shameless will be her last.

In an emotional Facebook post, the 31-year-old says the role has been "a gift" that's meant"the last eight years have been the best of my life".

Rossum, who plays Fiona Gallagher in the show, says it will continue past season nine - just not with her.

"It's a hard thing to put into words, feelings. But I'm going to try," she says.

"I know you will continue on without me, for now. There is much more Gallagher story to be told. I will always be rooting for my family. Try not to think of me as gone, just think of me as moving down the block.

"With love, always."

The show's executive producer John Wells says Rossum will "forever be part of the Shameless family".

"She has been integral to the show's success, from her wonderful portrayal of Fiona to her leadership role on set, as well as directing multiple episodes of the series," he says.

"We are hard at work now creating a season nine finale for Shameless which we hope will provide a Gallagher-worthy sendoff for Fiona that honors the great work Emmy has done."

Wells also makes it clear Rossum can return to the show any time she likes.

"It is always bittersweet when an ensemble member decides to move out of the proverbial house, but our door will always remain open for Fiona to return home for a visit, or to move back in."

Shameless screens in New Zealand on Netflix.