You’re going to want to sit down for this one.
Just a few weeks ahead of the season 17 premiere of Grey’s Anatomy, Ellen Pompeo crushed our medical fantasy dreams and revealed the beloved series could officially call this upcoming season its last. In a new cover story for Variety‘s Power of Women issue, the 50-year-old posed next to her esteemed co-star Debbie Allen plus showrunner Krista Vernoff and director-actor Chandra Wilson as she discussed what to expect from the show this fall while reflecting on its legacy.
Though Pompeo has teased the end of Grey’s before, this sounds sort of finite. “We don’t know when the show is really ending yet. But the truth is, this year could be it,” she said. Of course, hanging up her Meredith Grey hat—one she’s worn since 2005—wouldn’t be easy.
“I don’t take the decision lightly. We employ a lot of people and we have a huge platform,” she said. “And I’m very grateful for it. You know, I’m just weighing out creatively what we can do. I’m really, really, really excited about this season. It’s probably going to be one of our best seasons ever. And I know that sounds nuts to say, but it’s true.”