Ellen Pompeo is set to make a comeback as Dr Meredith Grey in at least four new episodes of Grey’s Anatomy.
The hit ABC show is coming to its 20th season with Jessica Capshaw also set to reprise her role of paediatric surgeon Dr Arizona Robbins in one episode.
Pompeo, 54, was reduced from a series regular to recurring, after announcing her departure from the show in November 2022 in an Instagram post. “I am eternally grateful and humbled by the love and support you have all shown me, Meredith Grey and the show for 19 seasons!” she wrote at the time in the caption.
The star had appeared in only eight episodes of season 19 due to signing a deal with Hulu for a limited series called Orphan.
However, Pompeo will remain an executive producer on the series moving forward, in addition to providing the opening and closing voiceovers for each episode – which began in 2005.
Speaking in Variety’s Actors on Actors series in June 2023, Pompeo opened up about the future of her character.
“I will be making some appearances hopefully next year, if I can find some time,” she told Variety at the time. “It’s not a complete goodbye. And I think we’ve got an interesting story to tell.”
In an interview with TVLine, director Debbie Allen teased Pompeo’s return to the show and said: “She’s in the first episode, and she’s in the one I’m going to direct. We have to let her go and do some other things, but she’s still our queen. She’s still our number 1 on the call sheet.”
Pompeo’s farewell episode aired in February last year, marking the actor’s final appearance as a series regular.
Her final episode,“I’ll Follow the Sun”, showed Grey departing to move to Boston with her family for a new job.
The episode saw Meredith’s love interest Nick (Scott Speedman) call Meredith as she boarded the plane to Boston and confess his love for her.
She pretended that the line was breaking up and told him she’d call him once she got settled in her new place. The final words Meredith spoke in the episode came as she read her children a book.
“The end of my story is not any kind of ever-after, because I’m still alive, I’m still here, and the sun still rises on my life,” she said.
Grey’s Anatomy Season 20 will premiere on 14 March 2024 and will be available to stream on Hulu