Would you even consider watching Lexie Grey's Anatomy? That's something series creator Shonda Rhimes is toying with now that she's realized that the entire cast will leave the show ---eventually. With T.R. Knight already gone, and Katherine Heigl's imminent exit, as well as Ellen Pompeo's impending maternity leave, the executive producer is currently weighing her options on how to make it work on the medical drama.
"It's going to be tricky," Shonda Rhimes told Entertainment Weekly's Michael Ausiello. "Ellen is incredibly optimistic and somehow thinks she'll be back and ready to rock 'n' roll. [But] I have a child, so I know that that's not true. [So] we have a lovely story [on deck] that will take us into her maternity leave. And we have plans for some really interesting stand-alone episodes for [while she's gone]."
"But we're heading towards the future of the show and eventually, unless we're really lucky, everybody's going to go," she added. "That's what the end of season 5 taught me. So we're looking at, how do we mess with that structure now while we have everybody and figure out ways in which, 'What would we do without Ellen? What would we do if we had an episode without Patrick Dempsey?' So season 6 is important. A lot of shows don't make it through season 6 because they don't know how to transition."
But while Shonda Rhimes is already figuring out a way around the possible future casting changes, she can't really envision Grey's Anatomy without Meredith Grey ---at least for now.
"I don't know" she said. "I clearly want Mer Grey on the show for as long as Ellen Pompeo wants to be on the show; that's not even a question. But I think that there's a possibility of [her leaving for good at some point]. I haven't even thought that far. That's the one blank spot I have in my head. I can't really picture Mer Grey not on the show. But [at least] we have Lexie Grey. There is another Grey if we really needed one."