Jeff PinknerJust as the show is about to gear up for its fifth and final season, shocking news has emerged that ‘Fringe’ will continue on without one of their showrunners. TV Guide has learned exclusively that Jeff Pinker has stepped down from his position that he’d had since the show first began.

Sources say that Pinkner’s decision to leave was an amicable one and made so he could pursue other projects. With his departure, Pinkner will not retain his executive producer credit and J.H. Wyman will be the show’s sole showrunner for its final season.

Executive producer J.J. Abrams, who created the show with ‘Star Trek 2’ partners Alex Kurtzman and Roberto Orci, had selected Pinkner to be the showrunner for ‘Fringe’ in Season 1. Wyman joined on as co-showrunner in Season 2.

Abrams released the following statement about Pinkner’s exit:

“We’re so excited to begin work on a fifth season of ‘Fringe’ and to be able to deliver the 13 final episodes to our passionate and devoted fans. For four years, J.H. Wyman and Jeff Pinkner have worked tirelessly as a team to keep all the worlds in order on ‘Fringe.’ We’re thankful for the invaluable contributions Jeff has made to the show and of course wish him well and look forward to working together in the future. J.H. Wyman’s importance to ‘Fringe’ cannot be overstated, however, and I’m thrilled that he will continue as showrunner for the concluding chapters of our story. We can’t wait for our fans to see what we have in store for them in the wild conclusion of ‘Fringe.’”

‘Fringe’ will return for 13 episodes in the fall starting on Friday, September 28th. If you can’t wait until then to see the cast, Wyman, Anna Torv, Joshua Jackson, Lance Reddick, Blair Brown, Jasika Nicole and John Noble will all be at the San Diego Comic-Con in what be the show’s final Comic-Con panel on Sunday, July 15 in Hall H.