Fans who haven’t yet seen sea­son 11 of ‘Grey’s Anatomy’ should look away now!


Shonda Rhimes says it “wasn’t easy or fun” to kill Pa­trick Dempsey’s char­ac­ter off of ABC’s “Grey’s Anatomy.”

Dempsey played Dr. Derek Shep­herd, a brain sur­geon nick­named McDreamy, who was Ellen Pom­peo’s love in­ter­est for 11 sea­sons on the long-run­ning med­i­cal soap.

Speak­ing to TV crit­ics Tues­day, the “Grey’s” cre­ator said she was faced with ei­ther hav­ing Shep­herd leave Pom­peo’s Mered­ith Grey and taint their love story, or be killed off, keep­ing it in­tact.

“The only way to pre­serve what felt true to me was that Derek was gonna have to die,” she said.

Pom­peo said that the loss was an in­ter­est­ing chal­lenge cre­atively be­cause “those are the best scenes to play” as an ac­tor.

She also pointed out the re­al­ism of the sit­u­a­tion.

“So many peo­ple lose their spouses in a myr­iad of dif­fer­ent ways and feel they can’t get up again and to tell the story of how life goes on af­ter ... that’s a story worth telling.”

Ear­lier Tues­day, ABC Pres­i­dent Paul Lee also ad­dressed the po­lar­iz­ing choice to kill off Dempsey’s char­ac­ter. “It was great to see ‘Grey’s Anatomy’ so rel­e­vant and tak­ing the na­tional con­ver­sa­tion,” he said.

Lee went on to say that “It was a dif­fi­cult de­ci­sion. Pa­trick ob­vi­ously has lots of in­ter­ests out­side,” re­fer­ring to Dempsey’s ca­reer as an am­a­teur race car driver. “Shonda de­cided that was the way to go.”

Rhimes teased that sea­son 12 will be “lighter in tone” and shows Pom­peo’s Grey in a po­si­tion she never thought she’d be in, as a wid­owed mother.

“Grey’s” new sea­son miere Sept. 24 in the U.S.

will pre-


Cre­ator/Ex­ec­u­tive Pro­ducer Shonda Rhimes speaks on­stage dur­ing the “Grey’s Anatomy,” “Scan­dal,” and “How to Get Away with Mur­der” panel at the Dis­ney/ ABC Sum­mer TCA Tour held at the Bev­erly Hil­ton Ho­tel in Bev­erly Hills, Cal­i­for­nia, Tues­day, Aug. 4.

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