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Jesse Williams has the answer to a question we posed just a couple weeks ago.

Based on recent comments made by Ellen Pompeo, it was a topic of conversation last month to wonder whether Grey’s Anatomy could continue without its leading lady.

If Pompeo ever decided to leave the ABC drama, would the show get canceled along with her exit?

Or would Shonda Rhimes and company find a way to push through, as they did after the departures of such previous main cast members as Patrick Dempsey and T.R. Knight?

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Heck, and Jesse Williams, too!

Williams joined Grey’s Anatomy in Season 6 as Dr. Jackson Avery and exited in 2021 after 12 seasons, although he recently returned for the season 18 finale.

He was nominated this year for a Tony Award and was asked by Access Hollywood in anticipation of that ceremony whether he could foresee a future for aforementioned series … without Pompeo.

“I don’t know, it would be a different show,” he replied. “She’s the heart of that show. She’s Grey. So, unlikely.”

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Jesse Williams is no longer a cast member on Grey’s Anatomy. We sure do miss that face.

Added Williams, clarifying his stance: “But again, I don’t work there anymore. So it doesn’t matter what I think.”

Pompeo, of course, has been front and center on this beloved medical drama since its premiere in 2005.

Recently, however, she offered a cryptic response when speaking about the program potentially continuing without her in the lead role of Meredith Grey.

“We’ll see, we’ll see,” she said simply.


Speaking at the time to Entertainment Tonight, she continued as follows:

“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.

“It’s inspired so many generations of healthcare workers.

“So, I think for the young people, it’s a really good piece of content and we’re going to try to keep it going for the young people — not necessarily with me, but keep it going beyond me.”

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Fun in the snow! Meredith Grey (Ellen Pompeo) is pictured here in a scene from Season 18.

Pompeo has never been shy about her lack of enthusiasm for starring on Grey’s Anatomy after all these years.

She’s come right out and said she wants the show to wrap up at some point soon.

“I’ve been trying to focus on convincing everybody that it should end,” Pompeo told Insider while promoting her company Betr Remedies this spring.

“I feel like I’m the super naive one who keeps saying, ‘But what’s the story going to be, what story are we going to tell?’

“And everyone’s like, Who cares, Ellen? It makes a gazillion dollars.'”

Ellen Pompeo in the Hospital

Points for honesty, huh?

Pompeo signed a massive contract in 2019 that pays her $20 million per season.

She said in September 2021 that Grey’s Anatomy will likely mark her final time in front of the camera, as she hopes to focus on directing and producing down the line.

“I’ve been trying to get away for years. I have been trying,” she told Entertainment Tonight a few months ago.

“It’s not because I haven’t been trying.

“I have strong relationships at the network and they have been very, very good to me, and have incentivized me to stay.”

Ellen Pompeo on the Finale

In January, ABC renewed Grey’s Anatomy for Season 19.

“I couldn’t be more excited that we get to keep telling the stories of Meredith, Bailey, Richard and all of the other doctors at Grey Sloan Memorial for another season,” creator Shonda Rhimes said in a statement at the time.

“This is a true testament to Krista Vernoff, the cast, the crew and all the writers who keep the audience on the edge of their seat week after week.

“And it would not be possible without the generations of incredible fans who have supported Grey’s Anatomy for so many years.”