What Ex-'Grey's Anatomy' Star Patrick Dempsey Is Doing Now

Grey's Anatomy let Patrick Dempsey go after many years of fan adoration. Fans still aren't totally clear why he's gone, even if Grey's Anatomy show creator Shonda Rhimes has stated her reasons, they weren't sufficient for booting him out of the cast.

But that's okay. Not only has Grey's Anatomy hired a new doctor with likewise looks to take over the lead hunk role as the show evolves, but more huge cast changes are underway. Even Meredith Grey is rumored to walk. As the show develops next fall, we may see quite a different Grey's Anatomy.

Patrick Dempsey is out there looking for work again, but he may just stick with the race car driving shtick. He achieved a second-place finish at Le Mans in France. Not bad for the 49-year-old actor. The Le Mans is a 24-hour endurance race. The same car runs for a full 24-hour period. And if you are wondering how the former Grey's Anatomy star could stay awake, use the bathroom, or eat, just know that drivers usually work in teams and alternate driving duties at pit stops.

But Patrick Dempsey is looking at life past Grey's Anatomy. It was a great run, but he'll work on a short project in Europe on race car driving while he speaks to American TV studios for new acting jobs.

In an interview, he told AFP about his next projects.

"The projects that I'm developing are European based, two, one of which is a racing show. [It] would be a limited series, based on the book The Limit, which is about Phil Hill winning the championship in F1. And it's not so much the racing, but it is what happens when you get out of the car and before you get into the car. I think that's fascinating for me to see."

But as for future prime time acting roles, it's predicted Dempsey should find a new home by fall. But he's worried he'll end up in a similar role to the one he played on Grey's Anatomy. The question remains if he can play somebody new and still be accepted. His defining moments as an actor were with Grey's Anatomy, so fans will have to get used to seeing a new type of Derek "McDreamy" Shepherd.

He stressed to Entertainment Weekly what he hopes to avoid in his next gig.

"I want to try something different. But will I be allowed to do something different? Is Derek so identifiable that I can't go on and be someone else? That will be the challenge. To see if people embrace me as someone else."

It won't be easy out there for the former Grey's Anatomy star, but whoever is next to cast him is sure to draw a large female audience of heartbroken Grey's Anatomy fans.

[Photo by Michael Hickey/Getty Images]