‘Grey’s Anatomy:’ Justin Chambers Departs Show After 15 Years, Ellen Pompeo Responds
BY Stephanie Larson
Published 3 years ago
Now, there are only three. After 15 years, hit medical drama Grey’s Anatomy bids goodbye to another of its original cast as Justin Chambers who plays fan-favorite Dr. Alex Karev exits the show. With his departure, the only remaining original cast members who’ve been with Grey’s Anatomy since its pilot are Ellen Pompeo, James Pickens Jr., and Chandra Wilson.
“There’s no good time to say goodbye to a show and character that’s defined so much of my life for the past 15 years,” Chambers said in a statement to Deadline. “For some time now, however, I have hoped to diversify my acting roles and career choices. And, as I turn 50 and am blessed with my remarkable, supportive wife and five wonderful children, now is that time.”
In addition to his announcement, Chambers also showcased his gratitude to ABC studios, show creator Shonda Rhimes, and his castmates. “As I move on from Grey’s Anatomy, I want to thank the ABC family, Shonda Rimes, original cast members Ellen Pompeo, Chandra Wilson and James Pickens, and the rest of the amazing cast and crew, both past and present, and, of course, the fans for an extraordinary ride,” he said.
On the other hand, Pompeo has broken her silence on her co-star’s exit and seems to echo fans’ sentiments. A day after Chamber’s announcement, Pompeo reacted to a tweet by Vanity Fair that reads, “#GreysAnatomy is about to feel one of its biggest losses yet.” In response, Pompeo tweeted out “Truer words have never been spoken” ending it with a broken heart emoji.
Chambers was introduced in Grey’s Anatomy as a surgical intern at Seattle Grace Hospital. And although his fellow interns initially didn’t take a liking to him, he soon earned their respect. Later on, he rose through the ranks and ended up as the department head of pediatric surgery. However, because of his involvement in Grey’s insurance fraud, he lost the post and was hired at Pacific Northwest General Hospital as Chief of Staff and Chief of Surgery.
Chambers last appeared on the show in its 350th episode on November 14, 2019. According to Deadline, Chamber’s most likely will not be coming back for any big send-off for the foreseeable future. However, as fans remember, in the fall finale of Grey’s Anatomy, part of Karev’s storyline was still ongoing. He had a new job and his wife had possibly volunteered to take in an orphaned infant. It is not yet known how the show will continue these storylines with Chamber’s departure.