Following the tragic death of Derek Shepherd on Grey's Anatomy last season, many fans have been left wondering how the show can possibly move on. With so many uncertainties about the coming season, which is set to air this coming fall, is Grey's Anatomy's run as one of the best medical dramas on TV finally at an end?
While McDreamy's death has many wishing they could turn back time and prevent him from staying parked in the middle of that fateful intersection, there are a few hopeful signs that the show will live on for at least a couple more seasons.
Despite the fact that the series has only been officially renewed for the upcoming Season 12, ABC President Paul Lee has stated that he has major plans for the medical drama. Lee even went a step further and, according to Zap2It, stated that Season 12 is "absolutely not" the final season for Grey's Anatomy, adding "I would like to see [it] run for many, many years to come."
Lee went on the describe the show as a "powerful, vibrant" series with an "incredibly passionate" fan base. He also added that the creative genius of Shonda Rhimes is one reason for the show's longevity and why it will continue to thrive despite the changes in casting.
"Grey's Anatomy is written by one of the best writers in television," he stated. "I know she has great plans for next season and many years beyond."
Meanwhile, after learning about Lee's comments, Rhimes took to Twitter and posted a message of her own regarding the reports that Season 12 would be the show's last.
"Exactly!" she wrote. "Why would it be the final season?"
Although Patrick Dempsey will most definitely not be returning to the show this season, several other cast members have signed contracts that extend beyond the upcoming season. Jessica Capshaw, who plays Dr. Arizona Robbins, is amongst the regulars who have signed new contracts.
According to the Christian Post, the actress has signed on for a three-year contract, which means she is set to appear on the show until at least May of 2018.
At the same time, Sara Ramirez is also working on a contract that would see her remain on the show for multiple years. Ramirez plays Dr. Callie Torres on the show, and her current contract with the series ends next May.
Grey's Anatomy returns for Season 12 on Thursday, September 24, 2015, on ABC.
[Image Courtesy: ABC]