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17th Dec 2022

Ellen Pompeo explains why she left Grey’s Anatomy

Sarah McKenna Barry

“I gotta do something new.”

After an impressive 19 seasons on our screens as Dr. Meredith Grey, Ellen Pompeo has outlined exactly why she decided to call time on her stint on Grey’s Anatomy.

Ellen’s final appearance on the show will air on February 23rd, but the past few years have seen her reduce her overall involvement.

Addressing her decision to leave on The Drew Barrymore show, Ellen spoke about how “incredible” it’s been but added that she feels a desire to “mix it up” a bit.

“I feel super happy,” she said. “But listen. The show has been incredible to me and I’ve loved a lot of the experience. Listen, it’s just, I gotta mix it up a little bit.”

As she went on, she pointed to her desire to do something new.

“I’m 53,” she said. “My brain is like scrambled eggs. I gotta do something new or I’m literally gonna turn into like, you can’t do the New York Times crossword puzzle every single day.”

Ellen also reflected on how Grey’s Anatomy was such a huge part of her life for such a long time.

“I mean, 19 years. That’s more than people keep their kids in their house. Like, people keep their kids in their house until they’re 18 and then they send them off to college.”

This isn’t the first time Ellen has discussed her need to call time on the show. Earlier this year, she told Insider that she was trying to convince her team to end Grey’s Anatomy.

“I’ve been trying to focus on convincing everybody that it should end.” She said. “​I feel like I’m the super naive one who keeps saying, ‘But what’s the story going to be, what story are we going to tell?’