Devastating news for “Grey’s Anatomy” fans: two longtime favorites are exiting after season 14.
In a shocking announcement, it was revealed that Jessica Capshaw, 41, and Sarah Drew, 37 — Drs. Arizona Robbins and April Kepner, respectively — are leaving the series, according to E! News.
Krista Vernoff, one of the series’ show-runners and executive producers issued a statement, saying, in part:
The characters of Arizona and April are permanently woven into the fabric of Grey’s Anatomy thanks to the extraordinary work of Jessica Capshaw and Sarah Drew. As writers, our job is to follow the stories where they want to go and sometimes that means saying goodbye to characters we love. It has been a joy and a privilege to work with these phenomenally talented actresses.
“I know you’re sad. I’m sad, too,” wrote Drew on Twitter. “I haven’t really had time to process the information. I’ve been with it for less than 48 hours so I’m not ready to say my thank yous and give an all encompassing statement. That will come later. For now, I’d like to say: I love you April and her story isn’t over yet.”
“For the past ten years I have had the rare privilege of not only playing Arizona Robbins but also being madly in love with playing her, ” Capshaw, 41, shared in an Instagram post. ” … I am grateful that I have gotten to bring her to life and for the life that she has brought to me. I am sad to see her go but I am consoled by the idea that she will continue to live on and on in all of our consciences and our imaginations.”
Actor Jesse Williams, who plays Dr. April Kepner’s ex-husband Dr. Jackson Avery, shared his frustration and support, saying “this news f**kin sucks.” The 36-year-old added, “To say they’ll be missed is a massive understatement. Luckily for all of us, we’ll get to see these artists continue bringing compelling and complex characters to life for many moons to come!”
Since the news broke Thursday, lead actress Ellen Pompeo — Dr. Meredith Grey — pushed back at reports that her recently announced pay raise was to blame for her some of her co-stars’ departures. Pompeo signed a major deal to extend her role for at least two more seasons, during which she stands to make over $550,000 per episode. Pompeo’s comments that the allegations, which originated from Deadline, were a way to “pit women against each other” were echoed by show-runner Krista Vernoff in a statement.
She said, “It is a part of our success and what keeps the show exciting. We love these actresses and we love these characters and it felt true and right creatively to wrap up their stories. And that is the whole story.”
For fans who wanted Dr. Kepner to reunite with her ex-hubby or Dr. Robbins to finally get the love story she deserves, this news is especially devastating, but hopefully, their exits will leave room for a guest role — no Derek Shepherds here, please!