The Night Shift Ken Leung Topher

The Night Shift: Ken Leung Not Returning for Season 4

San Antonio Memorial is saying goodbye to one of its doctors.

Ken Leung is leaving the cast of NBC’s medical drama The Night Shift, and won’t be returning for the show’s fourth season, according to our sister site Deadline. Leung reportedly had an option in his contract to leave after three seasons; the show wanted him back for Season 4, but he is choosing to pursue other opportunities.

Leung has played ER surgeon/former Army Ranger Dr. Christopher “Topher” Zia since Season 1 of the hit summer drama. The Season 3 finale left most of the characters’ fates up in the air; Topher got fired by the hospital’s new owner, leading to a walkout by all of his colleagues on the ER’s night shift.

The Night Shift has been a solid summer performer for NBC the past three years, and currently stands as summer’s top-rated network drama. In fact, it got renewed for a fourth season just last week… but that fourth season will have to go on without Topher.

Will you miss Ken Leung? Talk Topher with us in the comments, Night Shift fans.  

Comments are monitored, so don’t go off topic, don’t frakkin’ curse and don’t bore us with how much your coworker’s sister-in-law makes per hour. Talk smart about TV!

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127 Comments
  1. christopher bee says:

    I will miss him dearly. Good Luck Ken.

  2. Amanda says:

    Noooooo!

  3. Bella says:

    That’s disappointing. I hope to see him in something else soon.

  4. tealfish says:

    He’ll be missed but unsurprising that Ken chose to leave. NBC waited forever to pick up another season that would have been a no brainer for any other network. Not to mention TNS has a hard filming location in the ABQ desert (long and cold nights). Some other network will value him and his new show more.

  5. Terri says:

    Damn it Toph!

  6. Kevin says:

    This makes me sad. Ken Leung was great on LOST back then.

  7. wvugirl2007 says:

    I am going to miss him. Amazing character and actor. The Night Shift never gets the love it deserves from the network. It is the best summer show on television now that Royal Pains has finished its run.

  8. Dennis says:

    Loved him on LOST. An amazing actor and nice guy.

  9. Joey Padron says:

    Sad news he’s leaving the show. Gonna miss Topher next season. Hope Ken will be back on TV soon!

  10. Tony Lang says:

    I still like this show despite all the regulars that dropped out after every renewal. First the hot shrink, then the hot resident chick (I’ll always know her as Hot Molly on Emily Owens), then Freddy Rodriguez, then the hot EMT chick and now the… hot (?) Ken Leung. I hope at least they bring back Paul and his new grilfriend, I liked them together.

  11. Carla Krae says:

    I hope he’s at least in the premiere to give us closure. Loved Topher. This sucks.

  12. Spikenalabama says:

    Noooooooooo! Last season we lost Freddy Rodruiguez and now this. Say it isn’t so!! I love this show and Topher was a huge part of that.

  13. mary says:

    WTH! I loved him on the show.

  14. Nancy Farkas says:

    If they keep dropping cast members like this, the show won’t last. This is the 3rd actor to leave in as many years.

    • Mike M says:

      Totally agree with you!

    • Mike M says:

      Totally agree with you!

    • Chaz says:

      they didn’t drop him. In his contract, it said he has an option to leave after 3 seasons and he did chose the latter.. I’m guessing and hoping he’s got new projects. TNS wont be the same without tooth. He’s one of the show’s charms.

      • Jost says:

        First time I saw ken Leong in Rush hour movie. And when I saw him on the show the night shift after it premier, I was like I’m going to watch this show!! Now it won’t be the same without him having on the show! I’m going to miss his personality and his character!!!

  15. Warner says:

    If he is the one that decided not to return, I say Godspeed and good luck. Here’s hoping that people/fans know it was his decision to leave and don’t take us through the bring back routine they use when stars leave on their own.

  16. Lordes says:

    I know there are a lot of opportunities out there but you can’t leave Night Shift you’re one of the best actor on this t v series, just hope to see you pop in and out From time to time, good luck out there hope you find what you’re looking for, TAKE CARE

  17. lori says:

    I love this show and Topher was my favorite character.

  18. Miz says:

    Oh noo!! I will miss him dearly…He really is crazy funny with his expressions.

  19. Jocelyn says:

    Man to me he waß the one that was holding everyone together emotional and supportly. I will miss him

  20. Dragondogs whisper says:

    I’m gonna miss Topher so much.

  21. Sashnah Ahjit Vadim says:

    Very sad that Topher is not returning. I liked him a lot.

  22. Roy says:

    Love the show, but would like to see more realistic scenes of San Antonio…we have no canyons as shown in one episode.

  23. Jean says:

    Very disappointed that he won’t be returning.

  24. Mj says:

    Nooooooooooooo, not Topher he’s got
    kids, and I love his character 😭😭😭😭😭. What happens?? I’m watching the following episode to the hostage situation now 😢

  25. Hope they don’t cancel.

  26. Jeremy Harris says:

    Of one wants to know the exact reason it’s because he got cast in the new inhumans series premiering this fall. He said no to night shift because he got a way better offer with marvel. Sad to see toph go but can’t wait to see him as karnak!

    • FaerieFire99 says:

      Its hard when we love a character an actor has owned the way Ken did, but I’m with you, gonna be great in that role! Maybe he can pull some more fans to give other genres a shot :)

  27. Katherine Everhart says:

    I will miss Topher very much! He is one of my favorite characters on the show! I wish he would come back.

  28. Deborah Anderson says:

    NO!! FAVORITE CHARACTER!! Great show! Great actors!!

  29. Agent K says:

    I look forward to The Night Shift every summer. I hated it when good actors leave a show! Gonna miss ya’ Topher!

  30. Betty Stoll says:

    I will really miss him being on the show which I always look forward to every summer! Really love the show and everyone on it! So sorry he’s not going to be on it! Will miss him.

  31. Danny F says:

    I’m watching the new season tonight and wondering about Topher. Did they fire the Asian guy? #AsianLivesMatter Then I read he decided to quit. How unfortunate. It’s so rare for network TV to cast an Asian in a high management position. More roles need to be given to Asians. Minority does not mean just black.

  32. Mlee says:

    It’s extremely upsetting, but I just hope that this show continues with the good ratings…love it and ALL the storylines!

  33. Jeff Gardner says:

    Dam straight I’ll miss Topher. I hope he will change his mind & come back to the show.

  34. Bobbie A says:

    Missing Topher 🙁 Please get him back!!

  35. Sandi Jardine says:

    I binge watched all previous seasons tone prepared for the return last week.
    I am completely hooked – but I have to say – I don’t enjoy them regularly removing good cut era free each season.
    After season 1 – it was the Psych Doc that was starting up a nice connection with Ragosa, then after season 2 they got rid of Ragosa who had just become a Dr and was much more wondering after leaving his administrative position. As well as another female lead.
    I am struggling with the swinging door – but this show brings back ER vibes big time!
    I’m hooked.

  36. David Vaughn says:

    I just binge watched then last three seasons of the night shift.
    The show really got my adrenaline flowing. Then I decided to look it up to see if they were other seasons and now I hear that there’s a season 4 but without one of the main characters Topher I really like the actor Ken and best wishes and hope to see him in other TV shows like this and lost…

  37. Carie L ZAPATA says:

    Really going to Miss Topher

  38. Pameel says:

    He and his character will be sorely missed!!!

  39. Lesley K Sackville says:

    Oh no not Topher…gone and his daughter too…so sad!

  40. Shirley Brokaw says:

    That’s really disappointing! He was one of the Best! I wish him well but the show won’t be the same without him. 😢😢

  41. Stephanie Young says:

    U will be missed…but i hope ur new endeavors are wonderful

  42. Stephanie Young says:

    U. Will be missed..good luck

  43. Kay says:

    I wish you would of never killed Topher off of Night Shift. I loved him.

  44. Private says:

    Sooo sad Topher is gone. That was bad enough but his daughter dying too, really! They will be missed. Can’t wait to see him in his new roll

  45. Dr. Andrew says:

    Too bad. We liked him on the show, but if he doesn’t want to be there, don’t let the automatic ER door pinch him in the behind.

  46. Ann says:

    I was devastated to hear this. Love topher. I sincerely hope Dr Zia comes back and that this was all a scam. He is the best.

  47. Larry says:

    Ken’s schedule with The Inhumans probably had a big part of him not returning. So not really surprised that he had to let go of The Night Shift.

  48. Someone says:

    I love Topher!!! He was a great character!! And he was a part of the family!!! 😭😭😭😭😭😪😪😪😪

  49. Janice says:

    Love the character ‘Topher’ will miss him. I have enjoyed this show the past three seasons. Great stories and characters.

  50. Ashely says:

    Noooooooooo