It has been over five years since Patrick Dempsey wore his scrubs for one last time as the beloved Dr. McDreamy. Now fans are learning that the actor may have been more of a McNightmare on set.
“Greys Anatomy” has been on the air for sixteen years, making it the longest-running medical drama on television. Consequently, the TV series has garnered millions of dedicated fans throughout the years.
In season eleven, several “Greys Anatomy” viewers were heartbroken to see Patrick Dempsey leave his role as Dr. Derek Shepard. Now fans are finally getting clued up on what truly happened to make Dempsey leave.
Patrick Dempsey and Ellen Pompeo on the set of "Greys Anatomy", December 2004 | Source:Getty Images
“Greys Anatomy’s” action-packed history in her new book, “How to Save a Life: The Inside Story of Grey’s Anatomy.” The 320-page oral history text even reveals new details about the show’s most turbulent times.
The text includes a chapter on the events leading up to its leading man's exit. Rice collects insight on the season 11 departure by speaking to co-stars and executive producers who were present for it.
Dempsey participated in an exit interview just two weeks after his final episode of “Greys Anatomy” aired. At the time, the actor alluded that his shift in priorities encouraged him to leave the show and explained his scheduling challenges:
“Doing that for 11 years is challenging…. What I would like to do is focus on not being spread so thin. Those days are over.”
Although Dempsey made it clear that he was ready to focus on being a dad, that first interview highlighted that he probably wasn’t part of the decision-making for his character’s death. However, he later revealed that he and Shonda Rhimes decided together.
Since then, fans have been going with the more friendly version of how Dempsey left the show without question. Fans accepted this version, especially since the actor had a couple of cameos in season 17 and spoke positively about the experience.
Dempsey detailed his reunion with cast members as an emotional time where they hugged each other and cried. This is not surprising since many of his peers have described him as a kind and charismatic man.
Unfortunately, a chapter in Rice’s new book explores a different side of Dempsey which resulted in his 2011 exit. Executive producer James D. Parriott reveals how Dempsey allegedly “terrorized” the set with his actions:
“He didn’t like the inconvenience of coming in every day and working. He and Shonda were at each other’s throats.”
Shonda Rhimes and Patrick Dempsey accept the TV Land Future Classic Award for "Grey's Anatomy" , March 2006 | Source: Getty Images
Parriott details having to hold sessions with the production team and Dempsey, who was working against them at the time. Soon, the tension had risen to a point where Rhimes was forced to write him out of the show.
Although Dempsey’s last days on “Greys Anatomy” were not as smooth sailing as fans thought, at least the text reveals he wasn’t all that bad. After everything, his peers still refer to him as a sweetheart who was just in a bad space.
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