TV Line has scored the best scoop ever, Supernatural fans:
Misha Collins will return to the CW series as a series regular for Season 9.
In addition to reprising his role as the heavenly angel Castiel, Collins will direct an episode of the show next season.
Since his first appearance as Castiel (and Jimmy Novak and Emmanuel and God and Leviathan!Cas and of course Himself), Collins has had fluctuating status. In season 4 he was a recurring character, 5 and 6 he was a regular, and in seasons 7 and 8 he was a special guest star. Hopefully this upgrade to series regular once more will mean that his current arc on the show (in which Cas is a sleeper agent for heaven) will be resolved before the season 8 finale.
Collins will also be the second series regular to direct an episode – Jensen Ackles has so far directed 3.