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Grey's Anatomy

Grey’s Anatomy Creator Shonda Rhimes: I Never Said Owen & Cristina Would Stay Together – Exclusive

Grey's Anatomy heads into unknown territory this season, with a finale that in theory allows an “out” to those actors who don’t want to renew their contracts. With that kind of pressure, it’s no wonder creator Shonda Rhimes has already dismantled the finale episode several times. But while some of the big questions still remain unanswered, even to the creator, Rhimes knows in what directions she’s heading with storylines we’ve been obsessing over (Owen and Cristina!)

At the “Welcome to ShondaLand: An evening with Shonda Rhimes and friends,” put together by the Academy of Television Arts & Sciences, Wetpaint Entertainment got a chance to ask the exec producer a few burning questions. Here’s what she has to say.

Wetpaint Entertainment: You have mentioned that this season's Grey's Anatomy finale is particularly difficult to write? Why more so than the previous ones?

Shonda Rhimes: Well, just because the interns are going to stop being residents after this season. They're going to become attendings. This is their last year in that world. And there's also that idea that we're not a hundred percent sure exactly who's coming back next year and who's not. And also, we've been doing this for seven seasons, that you want to top yourself every time, and you want to do better every time.

Will the season finale be happy or sad?

I can't tell you a single thing.

We’ve also seen some photos of airport scenes, with Meredith, Derek, Zola and Cristina. Are you able to tease them at all?

People seem to be very obsessed with these airport scenes. I will say this. The residents are interviewing for jobs which is what happens when you're a resident. That's why they're traveling. No one's going to Africa.

What are you able to say about the Boards episode coming up?

Oh God. I think that it's going to have some very unexpected consequences for every last one of our residents.

We hear the boards episode is also very funny.

It's very funny. There's a lot of incredibly funny things that happen in this run up to the end of the season, things that we sort of found and we laughed about it in the writers room, the table reads. The kind of thing where we laughed and laughed and laughed. So yeah, it's been great.

You recently tweeted that you intend to keep Cristina and Owen together.

That doesn't mean they're going to stay together. It just means that I want to keep them together.

Are you trying to find the light at the end of the tunnel at this point?

I already know what the light at the end of the tunnel is. So for me, I feel like that journey is very clear to me. I think for the fans, it's just a little scarier because they don’t know where we're going.

What will happen on Private Practice? You’ve said they’ll all need a vacation on the beach after this season.

We're going to go to some very dark places this season. I mean we're also going to have these wonderful moments of light for them where we see different sides that we haven't seen. But a lot of very surprising, very unexpected, very dark things in there that are happening.

Who's digging deep? Who's going dark?

Oh, I can't tell you that either. That's a spoiler.

Can we say anything about Addison’s storyline in particular?

Yeah. I think Addison finds herself at a very large crossroads. I think we head towards a place where she’s confronting what happens when you get everything you want. What do you do then?

It’s hard not to be in love with Scandal right now. Kerry Washington was comparing it to Mamet, and people keep mentioning Aaron Sorkin as a comparison. Were you wanting to write quicker, snappier dialogue?

The world just felt like it required it. It wasn't really that I was trying to do it, but like when we got down to it, when you got down to that world, these were people who didn't spend time wallowing in their emotions or over‑thinking anything or saying anything too slowly. There was no time. This is a fast‑paced world. You have to be moving at a certain pace. As a writer, it was really fun because you got to do something totally different!

Check out all of Wetpaint Entertainment’s Scandal coverage.

Catch a new episode of Grey’s Anatomy on Thursday, April 12 at 9 p.m. ET/PT on ABC.

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04.13.2012 / 12:33 AM EDT by Carita Rizzo
Related: Grey's Anatomy, Spoilers, TV Stars, Cristina Yang, Owen Hunt

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