'Grey's Anatomy' Fans Respond to Jessica Capshaw, Sarah Drew Departures

Libby Birk


After news of two series regulars leaving Grey's Anatomy, the show's prognosis does not look good if you ask Twitter. Grey's fans are unleashing their wrath on the social media platform after news hit that Jessica Capshaw (Dr. Arizona Robbins) and Sarah Drew (Dr. April Kepner) would be exiting the series at the end of the current season.

Many jokingly wrote that Grey's may as well have been canceled, while others seriously wondered if the show would survive without the two characters, both of whom were longtime fan favorites.

"i think it’s time for grey’s anatomy to end now" one fan wrote.

"that’s it . i’m done w Grey’s Anatomy," another said.

Bachelor star Becca Tilley wrote, "YALL. Help. I’m so sad. @JessicaCapshaw @sarahdrew you deserve MORE THAN THIS!!!!"

"i’m so pissed. how could grey’s anatomy get rid of two of the strongest female roles in the show.... @shondarhimes can i talk to u," one fed-up fan wrote.

"jessica capshaw and sarah drew have both given nearly a decade of their lives to grey's anatomy and they didn't deserve to be written off a show who's success they hugely contributed too over something as petty as 'creative differences,'" someone said.

"grey’s anatomy getting rid of jessica capshaw and sarah drew??? they are literally gonna get themselves cancelled because hardly anybody will watch the show now that they’ll be gone," one person vented.

"i’ve never been so pissed off about a show before lmao but for real....grey’s anatomy is done for me. how you about to kick off two of the most important and STRONGEST characters????" one said.

"welp, looks like i'm done watching grey's anatomy and can move on with my life," someone wrote.

"April & Arizona are legit the only two favorites left on Grey's Anatomy and they're getting rid of them? stay tuned on ABCGrey's on how to ruin a good show," another person lamented.

"Season 30 of Grey's Anatomy will be a long shot of Ellen Pompeo standing atop a pyramid of bodies, a single tear streaking down her cheek," wrote a Vanity Fair editor.

Capshaw has been on the show for 10 seasons, nine of them as a series regular; Drew has been on Grey’s for nine seasons, eight of them as a series regular.

Both character are fan favorites, with each of the actresses boasting almost 2 million followers on Instagram. Drew often posts behind-the-scenes photos, including a shot of her and Capshaw a few weeks ago.

Drew wrote on Twitter on Thursday that she was saddened by the news and has not yet processed the turn of events, which she says she has known about for less than 48 hours.

"Hey guys," Drew began in a screenshot of a note posted on Twitter. "Thank you for all of the love. I know you're sad. I'm sad too. I haven't really had the time to process this information. I've been with it for less than 48 hours, so I'm not ready to say my thank yous and give an all encompassing statement about my 9 years here. That will come later."

She continued, "For now, I'd like to say: I love you, and I love April and her story isn't over yet. And the really good news (for me, at least) is that I'm here on set shadowing one of my favorite people, Kevin McKidd, with my beloved Grey's family all this week and next, so I get to process all of my feelings surrounded by the community that has nourished and nurtured me for almost a decade. For that, I am so grateful."

Capshaw also shared her thoughts on being let go from the show, paying tribute to her character.

"For the past ten years I have had the privilege of not only playing Arizona Robbins but also being madly in love with playing her," Capshaw began. "Arizona Robbins is kind, intelligent, funny, insightful, bold, playful, fierce and really good at her job. She was one of the firs members of the LGBTQ community to be represented in a series regular role on network television. Her impact on the world is permanent and forever. Forever."

Capshaw continued, "I am grateful that I have gotten to bring her to life and for the life that she has brought to me. I am so sad to see her go but I am consoled by the idea that she will continue to live on and on in all of our consciences and our imaginations. Shonda, thank you for the ride on this incredible rollercoaster. With a heart full of love, Jessica."

Deadline reports that the decision was made by producers, who at the start of each season have to formally pick up the option of each regular cast member. The publication also reports Capshaw and Drew will be the only series regular members of the Grey's ensemble to leave this year.

The decision not to bring the two actresses back comes on the heels of the blockbuster deal star Ellen Pompeo secured that gave her a significant salary increase, paying her as much as $20 million a year, including a signing bonus, producing fees, ownership in the show and other extras.

Executive producer and show creator Shonda Rhimes underlines the cultural significance of Capshaw and Drew's characters — Arizona, who is a lesbian, and April, who has a very close relationship with God.

“It’s always hard for me to say goodbye to any of my characters,” Rhimes said. “Both Arizona Robbins and April Kepner are not only beloved but iconic — both the LBGTQ and devout Christian communities are underrepresented on TV. I will be forever grateful to both Jessica and Sarah for bringing these characters to life with such vibrant performance and for inspiring women around the globe. They will always be a part of our Shondaland family.”

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