"It's incredible to be back," Kate shared on The Kelly Clarkson Show Jan. 25. "The younger actors that are the new set of interns, they grew up watching the show and you're like, 'Oh, hi.' It's funny to be the elder statesman of the show. They're so beautiful. All of them are such great actors."
The Emily in Paris star has been back at Grey Sloan Memorial Hospital in a recurring capacity for the last two seasons since her initial introduction to the Grey's universe during the season one finale in 2005. After departing in season three for her spinoff Private Practice—which ran for six seasons between 2007 and 2013—Kate eventually reprised her character in season 18.
And as she noted, the show's continued success all comes down to the behind-the-scenes crew, including soon to be departing showrunner Krista Vernoff.
"The writers—Krista Vernoff, Meg Marinis, Jamie Denbo, all of them—Krista is, was Shonda's right-hand woman," Kate explained. "So, she's been there and they've been there since the beginning, a lot of these writers, they're just incredible."
"What Shonda established was addressing, obviously all framed in the housing of a hospital, but she deals with social issues. She's always dealt with it," she continued. "Krista and Meg and them are writing this great women's health storyline this year that's so inclusive and looking at everything from all aspects. It's just been incredible to play."
Check back in with Dr. Addison when Grey's Anatomy returns Feb. 23 on ABC.