Death and cast changes aren’t strangers to “Grey’s Anatomy.” With several unforgettable cliffhanger season finales to its credit, the show is famous for killing off characters — George O’Malley (T.R. Knight), Denny Duquette (Jeffrey Dean Morgan) and Charles Percy (Robert Baker) are just a few who famously died — and adding new cast members.
But the Season 8 finale, which saw the death of Lexie Grey (Chyler Leigh) in a plane crash; possibly the end of Derek Shepherd’s (Patrick Dempsey) career as a surgeon as his hand was damaged in that same plane crash; the firing of Teddy Reed (Kim Raver) by Owen Hunt (Kevin McKidd), who is hoping it will give her the impetus to take a once-in-a-lifetime job opportunity; and the potential departure of several of the doctors — Meredith (Ellen Pompeo) Cristina (Sandra Oh), Alex (Justin Chambers), Jackson (Jesse Williams) and April (Sarah Drew) we have grown attached to — now that their residencies have come to an end and they are off to pursue their careers, will shake things up at Seattle Grace Hospital when “Grey’s Anatomy” returns for its ninth season this fall.
Watch the Dramatic Season Finale of “Grey’s Anatomy”:
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“I don’t know what is going to happen next,” says McKidd, who spoke to XfinityTV at a press conference to promote his upcoming animated Disney/Pixar movie “Brave.” “They keep their scripts very close to their chests. I know as far as what the premiere is going to be, it is going to be really intense. It is a real game changer doing something like that to a show, killing people and making them go through a trauma like that. It will be fun to see where we go next.”
McKidd has a definite idea where he wants Owen and Cristina to go. Her decision to have an abortion and his inability to forgive her — even though he knew going into the marriage she didn’t want to have children — has all but destroyed their union.
“I want Owen and Christina to be happy and to find their way back to each other,” he says. “They are kind of distanced from each other right now. There has been so much harm and damage done to the both of them. I really think the two of them are destined to be together. I am interested in that story of them coming back together.”
McKidd, who is still under contract to “Grey’s Anatomy” for several years, says it was sad to see Chyler go, but feels the writers really “grabbed” people with that storyline and it made for a “dramatic finale.”
Lexie, of course, was a Grey and Meredith’s half sister, so it is clear that executive producer Shonda Rhimes feels that anyone in the cast is fair game in the name of good storytelling. With that in mind, we asked if McKidd feels it is possible for the show to survive if the other Grey — Meredith — and her husband Derek are written out.
“I never say never to anything,” he says. “It is kind of odd to imagine that show without those characters, but you never can tell.”
Before returning to “Grey’s Anatomy,” which begins filming its ninth season next month, McKidd is promoting “Brave,” the animated story of Merida, a young princess who doesn’t wish to be forced into marriage and makes an irresponsible pact with a witch to try to change her destiny.
“I think the message of the movie is a very powerful one for young people because I relate to it,” says McKidd. “This kid who was on one path — I was going to be a plumber like my dad — I changed it. There are probably good sides and bad sides to me changing my own fate. I think that is another solemn message in the film: Do you really want to change your fate or not because there is always a payoff?”
“Brave” opens in theaters on Friday, June 22.