Grey’s Anatomy Cast Then And Now

By Aaron Love 1 year ago

Ellen Pompeo (Meredith Grey) Then

Image Source: Us Weekly
Meredith Grey has really been through the ringer across her 19 (yes 19) series of the show. The titular character is one of the only characters to have appeared in every one of the seasons, although waning through season 19. Grey's had to suffer through the deaths of both of her parents, her husband (Derek), numerous friends and she even had a miscarriage herself! Don't forget her own many near death experiences, nearly drowning at the site of a ferry boat accident and hospital shootings being two! Who'd work there?

Ellen Pompeo (Meredith Grey) Now

Image Source: Parade
Ellen Pompeo has supposedly, finally made her last appearance as Meredith Grey in season 19 of the show, although we doubt that's truly the end! In terms of her acting career, Grey's Anatomy has been pretty much her sole focus, also featuring in the spin off Station 19 as the same character. Pompeo has also tried her hand at the production and directing side of the industry in recent years, also in Grey's and its spinoff. She also appeared as a guest judge during season four of RuPaul's all stars series in 2019.

Patrick Dempsey (Derek Shepherd) Then

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Derek appeared throughout seasons 1-11 as a main character and then, following his death in season 11 when he was hit by a truck, he guest appeared a handful of times. Derek engaged in an affair with Meredith (against her knowledge) in season 1 which resulted in a falling out between the two, but ultimately they fell for each other, getting married and having 3 children. Similarly to Meredith, Derek really suffered throughout the show being involved in a shooting and a plane crash amongst many circumstances.

Patrick Dempsey (Derek Shepherd) Now

Image Source: Insider
Following his exit from Grey's Anatomy, Dempsey has appeared on the big screen in a number of films including: Bridget Jones's Baby and 2022's Disenchanted where he reprised his role of Robert from the original, 2007's Enchanted. He also had a recurring role on the CW's Devils as Dominic Morgan. Besides his acting career, Dempsey is an avid auto racer, even owning his own team 'Dempsey Racing' and appearing in the popular Le Mans 24 Hour race between 2012-13.

Sandra Oh (Cristina Yang) Then

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Meredith's person. Cristina is one of the original characters to feature in the show, and develops an extremely strong bond with Meredith, and romances with Owen and Preston. Seemingly, as with all employees involved in the show she suffered in some horrific instances. During the same period in which Derek was shot, Yang watched Owen get shot whilst in the same room which led to her developing PTSD and nearly leaving her job, and she was also involved in the plane crash. She even owned the hospital briefly! Yang ultimately left her job in season 11 moving to Zurich.

Sandra Oh (Cristina Yang) Now

Image Source: The Hollywood Reporter
Following her final appearance in Grey's Anatomy in 2014, Oh went on to have a starring role in the BBC's Killing Eve, as the titular character Eve Polastri opposite Jodie Comer; she became the first female actor to be nominate for a Primetime Emmy Award for this role and also won a Golden Globe for best actress. Alongside Killing Eve, Oh has also taken part in some voice acting as Virana in Disney's Raya and the Last Dragon and Ming Lee in Pixar's Turning Red.

T.R Knight (George O'Malley)

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George O'Malley was one of the original characters, and originally it seems like he isn't going to cut it as an intern, but over time he became a very skilled surgical resident. George affectionately gained the nickname heart in the elevator guy, after he was forced to perform surgery in a broken down elevator as an intern. George was briefly married to Callie but cheated on her with Izzie which culminated in the marriage coming to a swift end. George was killed off the show in season 6 after he jumped in front of a bus to save a woman.

T.R Knight (George O'Malley) Now

Image Source: Distractify
Following his appearance as George, Knight came out as gay and proceeded to perform his first role as a gay character opposite James Franco in 11.22.63 as Johnny Clayton. He has also had recurring roles in the show Genius, playing Max Jacob and J.Edgar Hoover; most recently Knight had a guest starring role in popular HBO series The Flight Attendant as Davey Bowden.

Justin Chambers (Alex Karev) Then

Image Source: BuzzFeed
Alex Karev started his internship at the start of season one alongside Meredith and the others, he originally comes across stubborn, nearly letting one of his patients die with Meredith having to save them. He eventually engaged into a relationship with Izzie and got married but an issue following her firing ultimately led to them getting divorced. Alex was one of the employees that was shot during the hospital shooting. He also marries Jo but again gets divorced and ultimately ends up moving to Kansas to reconcile with Izzie who he loves, and look after his two children Alexis and Eli.

Justin Chambers (Alex Karev) Now

Image Source: Distractify
Justin Chambers left his role as Alex at the end of 2019 and since then he has only appeared on our screens in the mini series The Offer where played Marlon Brando. During his time on the show he made a few brief appearances on the big screen such as Ryan in Broken City and Matt in The Zodiac.

Katherine Heigl (Izzie Stevens) Then

Image Source: Digital Spy
Izzie was also an intern in season one alongside the others, and became both George and Meredith's roommate. As mentioned previously Izzie and Alex had an on and off relationship, ending in them living in Kansas together with their two children. Izzie unintentionally caused the death of her other partner Denny after she cut his LVAD wire in the hopes it would get him a heart transplant sooner; she used the money she received from his will to fund Bailey's free clinic. Izzie also beat cancer during the series.

Katherine Heigl (Izzie Stevens) Now

Image Source: Vanity Fair
Heigl left her role as Izzie in 2010 after 120 episodes and since then has appeared on our TV screens and also the big screen. She starred in the drama Jackie & Ryan in 2014 and also voiced Andie in the animated film The Nut Job. She struggled in acting for a couple of years receiving golden raspberry nominations, before returning in a big way during the final seasons of USA Network's series Suits as Samantha Wheeler. She was most recently seen in Firefly Lane which she also had a hand producing.

Chandra Wilson (Miranda Bailey) Then

Image Source: Closer Weekly 
Miranda Bailey was briefly known by the unfortunate nickname The Nazi due to her rough and ready no-nonsense take on work towards her interns; but ultimately mellowed out across the series. She became the chief resident of the hospital throughout. Eventually, following an on and off relationship, Bailey married Ben and they fostered a child, Joey following a miscarriage. She is also another of the few characters to have appeared in every season of the show!

Chandra Wilson (Miranda Bailey) Now

Image Source: Good Morning America
Much of Wilson's career in recent years has been defined by her role as Miranda in both Grey's Anatomy and its spinoff Station 19. She received nominations for Best Supporting Actress for this role for four consecutive years from 2006-2009 although not winning the award. During 2009, Wilson took a small break from Grey's in order to perform in the Broadway Musical Chicago as Mama Morton.

James Pickens, Jr. (Richard Webber) Then

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As of the current series, Richard Webber is the current Residency Program Director at Grey Sloan Memorial Hospital. As we have come to expect with each character of the show, Webber has gone through a number of issues including the death of his wife, alcohol problems and cancer. Despite this, Richard has also appeared in every season of the show! Prior to his wife's death, Richard actually cheated on her with Catherine, and he ultimately ended marrying her after.

James Pickens, Jr. (Richard Webber) Now

Image Source: Hollywood Outbreak
During his time on the show, Pickens has maintained appearances on a number of other shows in recurring roles, this includes; Alvin Kersh in The X Files, and Chuck Mitchell in Roseanne. He even made a brief appearance in the Roseanne revival in 2018 and in its spinoff The Conners between 2018 and 2022. Similarly to Pompeo and Wilson, Pickens has also featured as Richard Webber in the Grey's spinoff Station 19.

Kate Walsh (Addison Forbes Montgomery) Then

Image Source: E! Online
Addison features in season one as the wife of Derek, although it is mentioned early on that she is cheating on him with his best friend Mark! She initially gives Meredith a hard time, as she is the woman 'screwing her husband'. Despite trying to reconcile with Derek, they ultimately divorced. Throughout the series, Addison continuously attempts to pursue motherhood through a number of options including IVF and sperm donors, ultimately adopting a child she delivered, Henry. Addison was away from the show between seasons 8-17 returning in 18.

Kate Walsh (Addison Forbes Montgomery) Now

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Following her initial exit from Grey's Walsh has had numerous roles on our screens. She appeared in the horror comedy spoof Scary Movie 5 and also had a small recurring role on the television adaptation of Fargo. She has found success in recent years appearing in Netflix Original shows: 13 Reasons Why where she plays the mother of Hannah who commits suicide, The Umbrella Academy where she plays The Handler and as the titular character Emily's boss in Emily in Paris.

Sara Ramirez (Callie Torres) Then

Image Source: Glamour
Callie initially met George following her dislocating her shoulder and on the same day she gives him her number. After a period of time longer than she would've hoped they eventually formed a relationship, although his sexual encounter with Izzie ruined this eventually. Callie is forced with the daunting task of identifying George following his death which left him unrecognisable. She ultimately ended up with Arizona following her sexual awakening in the earlier seasons; although in true Grey's style following her proposal she nearly died as a result of a car crash; this also ended after Arizona cheated on Callie leading to custody battles for their child.

Sara Ramirez (Callie Torres) Now

Image Source: Glamour 
Callie is Ramirez's most prominent role, where they gained popularity as one of the longest running LGBT characters in TV. Following their exit in 2016, they have appeared with a starring role in CBS' Madam Secretary as Kat and as Che Diaz, the podcaster, in the Sex and The City Spinnoff And Just Like That.

Jessica Capshaw (Arizona Robbins) Then

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Arizona joins the show in season five, and begins by annoying Miranda Bailey by rolling about on her Heely's (what a throwback!). Arizona forced her way on to the plane in place of Alex as a result of him taking another job, which as we know eventually crashed. As a result of this she had her leg amputated, against her wishes as a result of her crashing. She, as mentioned before, engaged in a relationship with Callie that ended when she cheated on her with Lauren. Arizona left for New York at the end of her tenure at the hospital so that Sofia could be closer to Callie.

Jessica Capshaw (Arizona Robbins) Now

Image Source: TV Insider
Capshaw finally said goodbye to Grey's Anatomy in 2018 after playing another of the longest running LGBTQ characters on TV. Since the show she has only made a handful of appearances on our screens. Firstly, as Abby in christmas romcom Holidate and then in the drama film Dear Zoe, in a much more serious role as Elly.

Sarah Drew (April Kepner) Then

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April first appeared at the newly-merged Seattle Grace Mercy West Hospital, not lasting long as she was fired as the result of being at fault for the death of a patient. She also had two failed marriages during the series, with Jackson and Matthew, both ending in divorce; although she later reconciled with Jackson. She was seen to be a very religious character, with a strong faith in Christianity, maintaining her virgin status through to she was 28. Unfortunately, she lost her first child soon after death, although they were able to baptise the child which comforted her slightly.

Sarah Drew (April Kepner) Now

Image Source: Good Morning America
Sarah left Grey's Anatomy at the same time as Jessica Capshaw, apparently down to creative ideas, although she did appear alongside Jackson in seasons 21-22 as a guest star. Since her initial exit, Drew has appeared in a recurring role as Cindy Turner in the ABC series Cruel Summer. More recently, Drew was cast in the Apple TV series Amber Brown, where she plays Sarah.

Jesse Williams (Jackson Avery) Then

Image Source: TVLine
Jackson was one of the doctors involved in performing emergency surgery on Derek following his shooting. He saved everyone's lives by making the shooter believe Derek had died by taking out his wires making it look like he flatlined. Jackson, as mentioned prior, married April and they had a child together, although he passed away soon after birth. Just prior to their divorce, April discovered she was preganant again, keeping this from Jackson, although they ultimately reconciled.

Jesse Williams (Jackson Avery) Now

Image Source: The Guardian
As with Sarah, Williams made a handul of guest appearances in seasons 18 and 19 of the show following his initial exit. Since this exit, he has made a number of guest appearances on popular shows Power and Disney's Only Murders in the Building. He made his broadway debut in March 2022, as the lead character Darren Lemming in the revival of Take Me Out, for which he was nominated for a Tony award.

Caterina Scorsone (Amelia Shepherd) Then

Image Source: The Hollywood Reporter
Amelia is Derek's youngest sister and is introduced the show in series 7. Throughout the show, Amelia is seen to struggle with sobriety issues, even operating on a man drunk once; this of course led to her licence being revoked. She had troubles during the show as well, doing drugs with her fiancé which unfortunately led to his death overnight. She found out she was pregnant following Ryan's death but that the child was developing without a brain. She started taking over from Derek's work in seattle after proving herself to be a world class neurosurgeon.

Caterina Scorsone (Amelia Shepherd) Now

Image Source: People
Scorsone originally appeared as Amelia in Grey's sister show Private Practice, first appearing in Grey's later the same year. As with Pompeo, Scorosne really hasn't appeared on our screens too often, with her acting career very dedicated to playing Amelia Shepherd. Her last role as a different character came as Celia in 2014's The November Man.

Kelly McCreary (Maggie Pierce) Then

Image Source: Reddit
Maggie is introduced in season 7 as the half sister to Meredith, although Meredith doesn't know this until later when they butt heads during a case. They ended up living together, alongside Amelia following Derek's death. Throughout the show she has had romances with Andrew and Jackson, before ultimately marrying Winston.

Kelly McCreary (Maggie Pierce) Now

Image Source: Woman & Home
Just prior to Grey's Anatomy, McCreary appeared in Shond Rhimes' other ABC series, Scandal. She has also featured in a handful of episodes, as with other cast members, of the spinoff Station 19. Besides these appearances, she hasn't appeared on our show in an excessive amount, although she does voice Dot in the animated show Harvey Girls Forever!

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