Grey's Anatomy is coming back for Season 16 in just a few days, and the show is promising major changes this year. The ABC medical drama teased fans Thursday revealing the new poster for the season ahead, in which Meredith Grey (Ellen Pompeo) stands with an ominous look on her face as the show asks "Where do we go from here?"
The question comes as the show prepares to address several cliffhangers left by the Season 15 finale, including Jackson's (Jesse Williams) disappearance into the fog and Meredith, Richard (James Pickens Jr.) and Alex (Justin Chambers) getting fired for insurance fraud.
Actor Jake Borelli, who plays beloved character Levi Schmitt on the series, spoke with TV Insider about the upcoming season and promised the absence of the three major characters at Grey Sloan Memorial will cause big changes.
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"We're picking up right where we left off, so there were some pretty intense cliffhangers and a lot of shifts in terms of some of the major doctors getting fired from the hospital, so right now, we're reeling from that and trying to figure out where the hospital can go from there," Borelli said of the premiere episode.
"I'm just excited to see how things affect Levi. He's at the bottom of the barrel still, and these are his mentors, so things are certainly shifting," he added.
With Borelli being promoted to series regular for this season, along with Chris Carmack (Link) and Greg German (Koracick), the actor said he looks forward to seeing Schmitt interact with other characters and start building "more in-depth relationships" with them.
As for Schmitt's relationship to Nico Kim (Alex Landi), Borelli said the new season will come with its obstacles.
"At the end of Season 15, we made up from the little fight we had that came on the tail of Nico [accidentally] killing a patient and him not being able to articulate his emotions very well," Borelli told the outlet. "Levi's really shown him how to embrace a more emotional side. They've stepped into Season 16 on a good foot, but if there's one thing we've learned about Shondaland, it's that relationships go through ups and downs."
Borelli's comments come just a few hours after series showrunner Krista Vernoff revealed the first half of Season 16 will center around consequences.
"We talked about season 15 as the season of love, and we've been saying in the writers' room this year that it feels like the end of 15 was the end of the romantic comedy. Like if you think of season 15 as a romantic comedy movie — I often see romcoms and wonder what happened after that," she told E! News. "Like often in a romcom a person chooses someone they love over someone else, but you don't play through the consequences. You don't get to see what happens after the happily ever after, and we've kind of been joking that season 16 is like the fallout from season 15."
"Like that's a fun, dramatic, romantic thing, but then there are consequences, and it feels like the early part of season 16 is about the consequences," she added. "And so for Meredith and DeLuca (Giacomo Gianniotti), it's like they were in the puppy love stage and now there's pretty dramatic stuff happening in her life, and that will test a new relationship."