Grey’s Anatomy Cast: 8 Shocking Off-Screen Scandals
For 12 years now Grey’s Anatomy has remained one of the top shows on television and the cornerstone to Shonda Rhimes’ highly successful Shondaland brand. Over the years fans have watched all of the ups and downs, good episodes and bad and all of the endless drama to happen to the characters on the show. While Grey’s has been highly entertaining with all of its shocking moments over the years, it seems the drama and scandal has found its way off-screen a time or two (or 8). With such a large cast and a revolving door of recurring characters, Grey’s Anatomy is quite the mix of people and personalities that sometimes don’t mix very well…or sometimes mix too well. Check out 8 shocking off-screen scandals involving the Grey’s Anatomy cast and crew.
8. Justin Chambers Affair Rumors
Justin Chambers is the second longest running actor on the show right behind star Ellen Pompeo. Although his character Dr. Alex Karev has gone from a sleazy womanizer to a mature and well-liked doctor, Justin Chambers found himself in the center of a inappropriate scandal that sounds more like. Back in 2014 rumors flew that Chambers was getting a little too close to his co-star Camilla Luddington who plays Jo Wilson. Reports from tabloids suggested that the two were seen kissing at a Los Angeles bar and holding hands. Other outlets and their reps were quick to deny the reports as Chambers has been happily married to his wife Keisha Chambers for 23 years and they share five children.
7. Cultural Impact
It is no surprise that Grey’s has become a pop culture phenomenon due to its popularity, however that isn’t always a good thing. While the show is not a reality series, many have taken it to heart which has resulted in a skewed view of the lives of interns and doctors, as well as an increase in people acting out based on what they have “learned” from the show. There have been reports of people rushing into action when someone is in medical distress because of what they learned on Grey’s. Even with the best intentions, this can often be dangerous. Meanwhile, real life doctors and interns have not appreciated the perception of themselves, their lives and their work because of the show. “You are just dragging your butt, trying to stay alive. You don’t have time to do your hair. You don’t have time to put on makeup. Every surgical intern has bags under their eyes,” Resident doctor Karen Zink said about the show.
6. Eric Dane’s Sex Tape
McSteamy indeed! Eric Dane is a well known actor and family man but he was also embroiled in some scandals and drama during the time he was on Grey’s. Back in 2009, a blog site got a hold of and released a nude tape that involved Dane, his wife Rebecca Gayheart and former beauty queen Kari Ann Peniche. The two quickly sued Gawker for the release of the video but not before it went viral on the internet. Dane then made headlines again in 2011, a year before his Grey’s exit, when he entered a rehab facility in Los Angeles admitting he had formed an addiction to painkillers after a sports injury.
5. Patrick Dempsey Affair Rumors
Patrick Dempsey’s exit from Grey’s after being the star for the show’s entire run was shocking and disappointing to many, but the reports that followed were even more shocking. After the news that his character was in fact killed off of the show it was reported that part of the reason was because he had been having an affair on the set of the show with a younger woman who worked on set. At the time sources told tabloids, “It was obvious to everyone Patrick was [sleeping with] her. It got very messy and emotional on set and became a huge liability.” According to those sources the alleged affair then changed Dempsey’s attitude on set and the whole situation went strongly against Shonda Rhimes’ self-proclaimed “no BS” rule causing her to cut his contract short on the show. Dempsey’s rep adamantly denied the story yet shortly after Dempsey’s wife of 15 years filed for divorce. After he was off the show and off the set it, it seems the two have been able to rebuild their relationship which points to Grey’s being some sort of factor in the unraveling of their marriage.
4. Shonda Hints At Firing Patrick
Over the years it has become abundantly clear that Shonda Rhimes does not deal with divas, bad attitudes or anything that creates drama on her sets. In an interview shortly after the exit of Dempsey, Rhimes admitted that she had killed off characters before because she didn’t like the actor, and while many, many people had been killed off her shows, particular Grey’s by that time, the timing so close to Dr. Derek Shepherd’s death had many thinking she was talking about Dempsey. He then added to the drama when he responded in his own interview saying, “I think she loves being provocative and that’s fine for who she is. That gets people talking about all the stuff that she’s doing.”
3. Katherine Heigl Slams Writing
Katherine Heigl’s saga on Grey’s Anatomy has now become infamous, yet still shocking every time it comes up. In 2007 Heigl won the Primetime Emmy Award for Outstanding Supporting Actress in a Drama Series for her role as Izzie Stevens in Grey’s but in the following years she caused waves when she refused to put her name in for the 2008 Emmys, and did so by slamming the writers of the show which included Shonda Rhimes. Heigl said she didn’t deserve a nomination because the writers hadn’t given her character enough quality content to “warrant an Emmy nomination.” The direct dig at the show that made her famous became a huge source of conflict, and started a whole new reputation for the actress as stuck-up, ungrateful and diva-like. She managed to last a few more years on Grey’s but finally exited the show in 2010.
2. Isaiah Washington’s Homophobic Slur
Back in 2007 another one of the show’s biggest stars left the show after Isaiah Washington who portrayed Dr. Preston Burke used homophobic slurs twice in public. He first used the slur on set of Grey’s when he got in an argument with co-star T.R. Knight and called him a “f–ot,” which was bad enough but afterwards Knight came out as gay. Washington then used the slur again backstage at the Golden Globes when he was trying to defend himself, which caused heavy backlash and caused him to be fired from the show, and essentially destroyed his acting career.
1. Shonda Rhimes Slams Katherine Heigl
It is clear that Shonda Rhimes does not sugarcoat things or hold back her true feelings but it was still shocking when she outright slammed former Grey’s star Katherine Heigl years after the drama of Heigl denying her Emmys nod and eventually leaving the show. When discussing her then new show Scandal in 2014, Rhimes said that she had learned a lot from the drama of working on Grey’s stating it had caused her to implement a “No a–holes policy.” “I don’t put up with bulls–t or nasty people. I don’t have time for it.” She then said she made sure to know exactly what kind of cast she was working with, calling out Heigl directly, “There are no Heigls in this situation.” Ouch!