Sunday’s Homeland series finale was initially supposed to kick off with the return of a pivotal character, but the combination of budget overruns and an 11th hour appeal from Claire Danes led to the scene’s demise.

Showrunner Alex Gansa tells TVLine that an earlier version of the swan song included a sequence wherein Danes’ Claire reunites with estranged daughter Franny. “There was a very significant Carrie/Franny scene that opened the finale at one point,” the EP reveals, before adding that the scene ended up getting excised for “two big reasons.”

The first “reason is we had gone so far over budget this season,” Gansa explains. “One of the battles that you have making television shows is how much you’re spending on every episode. And we just couldn’t [financially] fit it in.”

And the second reason, per Gansa, involved Homeland leading lady/exec producer Danes. “Claire felt very strongly that Carrie had made the decision to leave Franny behind in Season 7,” he says. “So we resolved that by having [Carrie grab a] photograph of Franny instead of [having a] scene.”

For more on Homeland’s last episode ever, read my comprehensive post mortem Q&A with Gansa, as well as Dave Nemetz’s full recap of the episode.