TV Guide Online reports that Amber Benson, who played lesbian witch Tara on Buffy the Vampire Slayer, will not be returning to the series as earlier reported. Although Tara was killed on the show's season finale last year, series creator Joss Whedon had said he wanted to bring Benson back into Buffy as another character. Negotiations between producer 20th Century Fox and Benson, however, stalled. "It was a question of negotiations, as it sometimes is," says Whedon. "It's sad because I love Amber. But that's between her and Fox."
And what of Willow (played by Alyson Hannigan), Tara's surviving partner? Whedon says the character will be meeting someone new: "We do have somebody in mind that Willow will meet in the future who might shake up her world just a little bit--and it'll be a girl," says Whedon, who adds, "This I will tell you without any equivocation: Willow's gay."