It's been a rough season for Grey's Anatomy fans. After the show gave a Dr. Alex Vernoff (Justin Chambers) a questionable sendoff, Thursday night's episode saw Dr. Richard Webber (James Pickens, Jr.) suffer a stroke, which left fans devastated. And that's just what's happening on screen.
Behind-the-scenes, the show announced earlier in March that it was temporarily suspending production out of concerns for coronavirus. Then, on Friday, it was announced that the medical drama wouldn't pick up production again in time to finish Season 16, which means it will end sooner than expected on April 9. Naturally, fans were concerned with what a shortened season could mean with so much going on. However, showrunner Krista Vernoff took to Twitter Friday evening to calm viewers' nerves.
We are disappointed that we don’t get to complete our storytelling this season. The good news? 1621 plays like a satisfying finale! It’s not where we planned to end, but it’s beautiful & the questions that linger we will answer next year. #GreysAnatomy #StayHome pic.twitter.com/BsHV9vJUiJ— Krista Vernoff (@KristaVernoff) March 28, 2020
Vernoff promises that April 9's episode, the 21st in the season, "plays like a satisfying finale." While she admits it's not where they "planned to end," but promises the lingering questions will be answered when the show eventually resumes production for Season 17.
While on unexpected hiatus, Grey's Anatomy joined a number of other medical shows that donated some of their currently unused props to be used again by medical responders who are dealing with the virus head-on.
"We were lucky enough to have about 300 of the coveted N95 masks, which we donated to our local fire station," Vernoff told Vulture, adding that they were "overwhelmed with gratitude for our health-care workers during this incredibly difficult time. In addition to these donations, we are doing our part to help them by staying home."
The news about Grey's Anatomy shutting down has become increasingly commonplace, with networks and studios halting their projects the world over in order to help slow the continued spread of coronavirus.
After news of the initial shutdown, Vernoff wrote a memo to the show's cast and crew, asking they "stay safe, stay healthy, stay hydrated, stay home as much as possible, and wash your hands frequently. Please take care of yourselves and each other."
Greys' Anatomy will air new episodes the next two Thursdays at 9 p.m. ET on ABC.