Ellen Pompeo Is Officially Leaving ‘Grey’s Anatomy’ After 19 Seasons

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Grey’s Anatomy fans started bracing themselves for the possible departure of Ellen Pompeo. Well, a few months after announcing that she would severely cut back on her Grey’s Anatomy appearances, the sad day has arrived.

Grey’s Anatomy captivated us with tales of the Grey Sloan Memorial Hospital (formerly Seattle Grace Hospital) and its cast. Over the years, we’ve said hello and goodbye to a stream of cast members since the show started in 2005.

Here’s the latest actor to whom we bid adieu: Ellen Pompeo.

Ellen Pompeo’s Epic Run on Grey’s Anatomy

Pompeo is both the central character in Grey’s Anatomy as well as its only remaining original cast member. The show’s latest season ended last week.

When Justin Chambers left Grey’s Anatomy in January of last year, Dr. Meredith Grey (played by Pompeo), the show’s star character and namesake, officially became the only one of the original interns to remain on the TV series.

A few years back, Ellen Pompeo’s contract was extended through 2021. She was one of the highest-paid female actors in the world, with a salary of $22 million a year.

Earlier this year, Pompeo gave Entertainment Tonight a pretty stoic answer when asked if she had plans to leave Grey’s Anatomy. She said “trying to reinvent the show and continually trying to reinvent the show is the challenge at this point, and listen, the show speaks to a lot of people, and the young people love the show.”

The Writing Was on the Wall

In early August, news surfaced that Pompeo would only appear in the next season of Grey’s Anatomy in a limited capacity due to another program for which she recently agreed to join.

Pompeo recently confirmed the news of her departure on her Instagram.

“I am eternally grateful and humbled by the love and support you have all shown me, Meredith GREY and the show for 19 seasons! Through it all….none of it …would have been possible without the best fans in the world. You all are RIDERS and you all have made the ride so fun and ICONIC!!”

Pompeo continued: “I love you madly and appreciate you right back. This isn’t your first time on the rollercoaster… you know the show must go on and I’ll definitely be back to visit. With a lot of love and immense gratitude XoE”

Pompeo’s new starring role will be part of an eight-episode, yet-untitled limited series on Hulu.

Read More: “Ellen Pompeo Is Severely Cutting Back Her Appearances On ‘Grey’s Anatomy’

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