Patrick Dempsey Jokes Ellen Pompeo Left Grey’s Anatomy for This Reason

Ahead of Ellen Pompeo's heart-wrenching Grey's Anatomy exit, her former co-star Patrick Dempsey joked he knew the real reason why she's leaving the show. Watch the clip here!

By Charlotte Walsh Nov 18, 2022 5:37 PMTags
Watch: Ellen Pompeo's Heartfelt Message to Grey's Anatomy Fans Amid Exit

Patrick Dempsey thinks he knows the real reason why Ellen Pompeo left Grey's Anatomy. 

The actor, who starred in the ABC medical drama for its first 11 seasons, appeared on Jimmy Kimmel Live! Nov. 17 to joke why Pompeo's character, Meredith Grey, would actually depart Grey Sloan, which was her home for the previous 19 seasons. 

After Kimmel quipped that Pompeo left because she "got caught stealing Band-Aids from the set," Dempsey had a quick response.

"Did she really?" he asked the late night host. "Finally, they caught her."

But Dempsey continued the bit, asking Kimmel, "Can you imagine what she would have in her house, now, from 19 seasons? A full hospital in the basement!" The two ultimately decided that if they get injured, they'll be calling Pompeo first.

In reality, Pompeo "scaled back" her Grey's Anatomy role in season 19, appearing in just eight of the season's 20 episodes. Her final appearance is set to be Feb. 23. But the actress already has her next gig lined up: She'll be starring and executive producing in a Hulu limited series based on the true story of a Midwestern couple who thinks they adopted a young girl with a rare form of dwarfism—until they realize she's been hiding something from them. 

Grey's Anatomy's Departed Doctors: Where Are They Now?

During Dempsey's Kimmel appearance, he reminisced on his time on Grey's, revealing that he's met fans of the show who've gone on to become real-life docs. 

"I have," he told the host. "I've met them, who have said it was because of the show, they've gone through medical school and now they're practicing. That's how long the show's been on. And that's the greatest thing about the show."

You can catch Pompeo's final episode as a full-time cast member when Grey's Anatomy returns Feb. 23.

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