In the Grey's Anatomy blurb heard 'round the world last week, Patrick Dempsey (Derek Shepherd) accidentally spilled the beans to Italian Vanity Fair, saying that Season 8 would be his final year at Seattle Grace. His rep later tried to swoop in and rescue him, saying he was only referring to the fact that his contract was up, but it was too late — the fuse had already been lit on speculations of a massive original cast exodus.
Luckily, Patrick chatted with Access Hollywood at the MTV Movie Awards last weekend to set the record straight. So, will Season 8 be his last? "Our contracts are up. I haven’t heard anything, so it seems like it is," he admitted. "I think it depends on how everything evolves. I think we need to keep the show fresh and if we can do that and people are still entertained then it’s worth talking about. Who knows? We’ve got a year. It’s a long way away. Still a lot left to do."
Finally! A satisfying, respectable answer that will probably succeed in keeping his reps' heads from exploding for at least the next few months. Plus, his calming masculine energy and soothing voice also helps us to feel better about the whole thing.
Access Hollywood went on to point out that many fans are saying if Derek isn't a fixture on the show, they won't be watching. Patrick's response? "There are also a lot of fans saying they will watch the show because they like other characters." Good point. And, to Shonda Rhimes' credit, the writing team did a spectacular job of fleshing out the other characters this season to push the show into more of an ensemble cast effort.
"The success we’ve had with the show is because of the fans,” Patrick added, “and the fans that have stuck with us need to be taken care of and listened to, certainly, and I hope we can do a really good season for them and keep them entertained, keep them engaged. I think that’s our responsibility right now."
Okay, fans, try to keep from swooning, please — especially since Shonda has also been quoted saying she's done catering to fan suggestions on where the show should go. She's doing her own thing, so we don't think she's quite on McDreamy's "the fans should be listened to" platform. We still think the producers should check their egos and just extend the invitation for everyone to come back, already.
Do you think Grey's Anatomy can pull an ER and outlast a cast rotation?
Source: Access Hollywood