Grey’s Anatomy: Shonda Rhimes Ready For Cast To Leave

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The sixth season of Grey’s Anatomy is already in production and the departure of T.R Knight has taught creator Shonda Rhimes some valuable lessons.

Shonda says that the end of season five taught her that at one point most of the cast may decide to leave the show and she knows she may one day be faced with the dilemna of how to make Grey’s work without Meredith or Derek.

Ellen Pompeo has recently announced her first pregnancy and on planning for her leave Shonda told Michael Ausiello of E!:

It’s going to be tricky. Ellen is incredibly optimistic and somehow thinks she’ll be back and ready to rock ‘n’ roll. [But] I have a child, so I know that that’s not true. [So] we have a lovely story [on deck] that will take us into her maternity leave. And we have plans for some really interesting stand-alone episodes for [while she’s gone].

On the future of the show she added:

“We’re heading towards the future of the show and eventually, unless we’re really lucky, everybody’s going to go. That’s what the end of season 5 taught me. So we’re looking at, How do we mess with that structure now while we have everybody and figure out ways in which, ‘What would we do without Ellen? What would we do if we had an episode without Patrick Dempsey?’ So season 6 is important. A lot of shows don’t make it through season 6 because they don’t know how to transition.”

When asked if Grey’s could go on without Pompeo and Meredith Grey Shonda said:

“I don’t know. I clearly want Mer Grey on the show for as long as Ellen Pompeo wants to be on the show; that’s not even a question. But I think that there’s a possibility of [her leaving for good at some point]. I haven’t even thought that far. That’s the one blank spot I have in my head. I can’t really picture Mer Grey not on the show. But [at least] we have Lexie Grey. There is another Grey if we really needed one.”

Would you watch Grey’s if Mer left and Lexie took the helm? I’m not sure I would……

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