Season 19 of Grey's Anatomy is all set to premiere on October 6, 2022, on ABC, bringing back the beloved batch of doctors, spearheaded by none other than the brilliant Dr. Meredith Grey aka Ellen Pompeo, who has excelled at this job for 18 previous seasons.
However, with this new season, there are some recurring concerns among the show's fans, as Pompeo's Meredith Grey is reportedly slated to take a step back from the new season.
The new season will feature many fresh developments and additions, including a batch of five new interns who will be the focus of Grey's Anatomy season 19, but Dr. Grey will only appear as and when required. Showrunner Krista Vernoff has meanwhile assured fans that the essence of the series' story will still surround Meredith Grey.
What did co-star Chandra Wilson say on Ellen Pompeo's reduced role in Grey's Anatomy Season 19?
Actor Ellen Pompeo has been an active part of the hit show for a significant portion of her acting career. Perhaps with the show changing the direction bit by bit, Pompeo is reportedly taking a chance to explore other directions. Meanwhile, the actor is starring in an executive producing untitled Hulu series about a couple who adopt a child they think is an 8-year-old with dwarfism.
Chandra Wilson, who is one of the original cast members of the show, has seen many rotations over the years in which the show has been a mainstream success. She believes that Grey's Anatomy can adapt to Meredith's absence at the forefront, without losing any essence, stating:
"We've been very well-practiced over the seasons as to what happens when our characters move in and out of our show,...It's always about the life of this hospital and all of the personalities that come through -- from our series regular characters to our guest characters, the medical event or events of the episode. If anything evolves it's that, but the housing of it is the same."
She also expressed how Meredith's absence will not necessarily mean that Meredith will be gone from the show. She explained:
"We still will always have the overall theme of Meredith Grey -- her eyes, that experience, sort of that intern experience. Always. It's always there and always peppered through...but in the midst of that is the life of the show that continues through each of the characters."
The showrunners also know and understand this concept and plan to expand the Grey's Anatomy universe with new characters without permanently removing the old ones. Krista Vernoff also stated that the show could continue even if Pompeo's career took her in another direction, stating:
"I think that Ellen is extraordinary, and she’s been an extraordinary center of this show for a really long time. And if her career takes her in another direction, I believe that we’ve got a show here with a lot of amazing characters that our fans love. And this new class of interns is really exciting."
Season 19 of the hit series will have to go a long way to prove whether the creators are right about the show morphing itself to new circumstances.
The first episode of Grey's Anatomy Season 19 will air on October 6, 2022, only on ABC.