Tom Felton, who played series regular Julian Albert in season 3 of The Flash, won't be returning in season 4. However, the character's departure from the show will be addressed.
The actor, known for playing Draco Malfoy in the Harry Potter franchise, joined The Flash cast in the season 3 premiere as Julian Albert, an ill-mannered forensic scientist working at the police department with Barry. The character spent the first several episodes of the season as a headache for Barry and was eventually revealed to be Dr. Alchemy, an unwitting pawn of the season's "Big Bad," Savitar. Julian managed to redeem himself and in the back half of the season, the character even joined Team Flash. Julian also became a love interest for Caitlin, along the way.
It had already been reported that Felton wouldn't be a series regular in season 4 of The Flash, causing fans to wonder if the character would be returning at all. Showrunner Todd Helbing told TV Line that fans will "pretty quickly" learn the reason why Julian is no longer with Team Flash in season 4. Helbing also said that just like other characters who have come and gone on the show in the past, Julian has the potential to return in the future.
Danielle Panabaker, who plays Caitlin, has also commented on Julian's absence in season 4. Speaking to Digital Spy, the actress downplayed Julian's importance in Caitlin's life, stating that "he was more into her than she was into him." Panabaker says her character won't be affected as severely as she was by the loss of her fiancé, Ronnie Raymond.
In several episodes of season 3, much focus was put on the relationship between Caitlin and Julian. The budding romance between the two was held back by Killer Frost, a much darker, more sinister side of Caitlin. Against Caitlin's wishes, Julian chose to save Caitlin and allow her to permanently transform into Killer Frost rather than let her die. Since Caitlin has yet to fully become herself again, fans never had the chance to see her confront Julian over his decision.
Though Julian did appear to be an important part of The Flash season 3, Panabaker's comments suggest that though Julian's absence will be explained, it won't have a major impact on the characters or the direction of the show's overarching storyline.
The Flash season 4 premieres Tuesday, October 10 on The CW.