Shonda Rhimes Reveals Why Callie Didn't Return to 'Grey's Anatomy'

Grey's Anatomy's season 14 finale almost included a cameo from a beloved character for April Kepner (Sarah Drew) and Arizona Robbins' (Jessica Capshaw) send-off, but CBS reportedly prevented it from happening.

During an Instagram Q&A with fans, Grey's creator Shonda Rhimes revealed she tried to bring back Sara Ramirez, whose character Callie Torres left the long-running ABC medical drama at the end of season 12, for a quick cameo to wrap up Arizona's storyline.

However, things fell apart due to the actress's commitment to the CBS White House drama Madam Secretary, TV Guide reports.

"Let me tell you something: we tried," Rhimes said in an Instagram video. "CBS has a hold of her because she's on another show, and we can't get her. But we love her. Always. This is her home. Come home, Callie."

Despite not being there in person, the season finale did feel the essence of Callie Torres.

During the final montage of the episode — which featured the weddings of April and Matthew (Justin Bruening), and Alex (Justin Chambers) and Jo (Camilla Luddington) — a cover of Brandi Carlile's hit song "The Story" performed by Ramirez plays, an ode to her performance of the song during the infamous Grey's Anatomy musical episode in season seven.

Callie also was a big part of Arizona's exit, as the newly-single fetal surgeon decided to move to New York so her daughter Sofia could be closer to her other mother, who she reveals is also single now.

Arizona later announces that she has begun to smile every time she receives a text from her ex-wife, and that she's thinking about rekindling the romance now that they are both on the market.

However, as she talks to April and Richard (James Pickens Jr.), she reveals she's afraid to try again since their relationship has not worked out so many other times.

"No one has ever, in the history of my life, hurt me the way Callie did," Arizona says. April tells Arizona that people change, referencing her getting back together with Matthew.

"It's not a catastrophe that Callie is making you smile again," April says. Arizona tells April, and Richard she will miss them terribly after she's gone.

As the episode draws to a close, Arizona receives a text from Callie saying how excited she is for Arizona to relocate to New York.

During the Q&A, Rhimes also revealed that she'd like to see Addison Forbes Montgomery (Kate Walsh) return to Grey's, but that cameo is also unlikely given the actress's busy schedule.


"I can't bring back people who don't exist in terms of availability. Kate's busy, people!" Rhimes said.

Grey's Anatomy will return for its 15th season with a two-hour season premiere Thursday, Sept. 25 at 8 p.m. ET on ABC.