James Pickens Jr: We Didn’t Know a Lot About Patrick Dempsey’s Exit
By all reports, Patrick Dempsey’s departure from Grey's Anatomy was just as sudden IRL as Derek’s death was on the show, but a lot quieter. In fact, it seems like the cast didn’t even know what was going on.
“We didn’t know a whole lot. It was kind of on the fly,” James Pickens Jr. (Richard Webber) tells ABC News. “So whatever information we got, we pretty much got it kind of right before it happened.”
“We spend as much time — if not more — with [those] folks than we do with our actual families. So you better learn how to get along,” continued. “But I think everybody has a great respect for one another's talent and what they bring to this process, and obviously, that makes Grey's such a phenomenal hit after all these seasons.”
James’s comments echo the ones Caterina Scorsone (Amelia Shepherd) made earlier to The Hollywood Reporter: “Shonda gathered the whole family of us together and sat us down and let us know what was going on. We were all together. We were probably as shocked as the audience [was].”
Even Patrick himself revealed that there was no fanfare for his last day on set. “It was very quiet, very quiet. I very quietly left,” he tells Entertainment Weekly.
Suffice it to say, no matter how quiet his exit was, the social media response has been deafening!