Is it time to say goodbye to Meredith Grey? Ellen Pompeo has indicated on numerous occasions that she would be fine Grey’s anatomy ended, but the TV show lives on.
The medical drama premiered on ABC in 2005 and Pompeo has played the title character Meredith Gray since the series debut and remains on the series alongside her original castmates Chandra Wilson (Miranda Bailey) and James Pickens Jr. (Richard Weber). In 2022, the series was renewed for a nineteenth season.
“I never thought I would stay on the show for so long,” the actress said in an April 2020 interview with Variety. “It happened and here I am. It was this incredible platform for me and allowed me to be able to stay home with my kids so much and not travel and live the circus life of an actor.
In 2018, the leading lady on the medical drama spoke to The Hollywood Reporter about her battle with the network for more money and contract negotiations with her former co-star Patrick Dempsey.
“For me Patrick [Dempsey] leave the show [in 2015] was a pivotal moment as far as the deal is concerned. They could always use him as leverage against me – ‘We don’t need you; we have Patrick’ — which they’ve been doing for years,” the actress revealed to THR. “At one point I charged $5,000 more than him on principle because that’s the way the show is Grey’s anatomy and I’m Meredith Grey. They wouldn’t give it to me.” Dempsey left the show in April 2015 after portraying Derek “McDreamy” Shepherd for nearly 11 years.
After years of dedication, Pompeo went after what she wanted and what she deserved — a hefty raise and producer credits. According to a 2020 report by Forbes, the television star makes $550,000 per episode, but also earns about $6 million a year from syndication profits, production royalties, and office space on Disney’s premises for her production company, Calamity Jane.
The mastermind behind the legendary medical show, Shonda RhimesShe has said, alongside Pompeo, that the long-running drama will end when the actress decides to walk away. “We arrive. Shonda and I will make this decision together.” Catch Me If You Can the actress exclusively told Us Weekly in May 2018.
However, Rhimes took a step back and handed over responsibility as showrunner to the executive producer Krista Vernoff when she decided to leave ABC to work for Netflix in 2017. Now Vernoff is in complete control of the series and will ultimately decide when it’s time to end the show.
“I’ve been trying to focus on convincing everyone that it should end,” Pompeo said in a December 2021 interview with Insider is, What Story Will We Tell?'”
The Massachusetts native, who has been the 16-year Dr. Meredith Gray on the ABC series, noted that nobody else seems to care about the storylines. “Everyone’s like, ‘Who cares, Ellen? It makes a ton of dollars,” she added.
Scroll down to see everything Grey’s anatomy Stars have said about the show going on without Ellen Pompeo: