It isn’t often a television show impacts people so much they actually start blaming the creator for their woes. If someone gets their heart broken while watching the hospital drama Grey’s Anatomy, that’s exactly what happens. Shonda Rhimes gets blamed. The question is – who is this woman who keeps breaking the hearts of Grey’s Anatomy fans?
Who is Shonda Rhimes?
Shonda Rhimes not just the executive producer of Grey’s Anatomy, but a list of addictive television shows including Private Practice, Scandal, and How to Get Away With Murder. According to TV Guide, the executive producer of Grey’s Anatomy is also the executive producer of 9 other television shows.
The 46-year-old is responsible for creating characters like Meredith Grey on Grey’s Anatomy and Olivia Pope in Scandal. Shonda Rhimes is so talented she has created her own television emptire called Shondaland. This executive producer of Grey’s Anatomy is a woman who likes to keep to herself. Even for people who watch her shows and recognize her name – they still don’t necessarily know much about her.
What is Shondaland?
Shondaland is a world of dreamy doctors and sexy Washington secrets. Scandal is about a professional fixer, Olivia Pope, who makes the scandals they deal with daily go away. The show follows the group of gladiators that fix the problems and their personal lives which can get pretty hairy.
How to Get Away With Murder is about a professor, Annalise Keating who teaches law. She gets mixed up with four of her students and they have to put into place what they’ve learned in her class.
Private Practice is a spin-off of the highly popular Grey’s Anatomy. The character Dr. Addison Montgomery left to join a private practice and the show follows her life.
Shonda Rhimes has always been a go-getter. When she was in high school she volunteered at hospitals. When she attended Dartmouth College she balanced class work with directing and acting in productions put on by the Black Underground Theater Association. At Dartmouth, she studied film and English. While she attended USC Shonda worked for Denzel Washington’s company. Her focus at USC was studying screenwriting.
When she graduated she didn’t have a job and worked where she could. She was a counselor at a job center for a little while until she landed the position of research director for a documentary about Hank Aaron in 1995 called Hank Aaron, Chasing the Dream.
While most Grey’s Anatomy fans won’t find this surprising, Shonda Rhimes is a woman worth a lot of money. Between Shondaland and some movie screenplays she’s sold, the net worth of Shonda Rhimes is estimated to be $65 million.
She Even Based A Character On Herself
According to TV Guide, Shonda Rhimes even based a character in Grey’s Anatomy on herself. She claimed Grey’s Anatomy character Cristina Yang served as her alter ego.
“During my darkest hours, my quietest saddest moments, my loneliest times, writing Cristina Yang fortified me. I leaned into Cristina, wrote her more eloquently, colored her more brightly, drew outside her lines. Let her do and think and live in ways that voiced my dreams. She did not want to get married. She had a genius that she chased. She loved her work. I gave her a strident desire to not have children because while I adore children, I wanted to watch her fight that feminist battle and win.”
Shonda Rhimes is Big on Family
When the tragic events of September eleventh happened Shona Rhimes rearranged her priorities and realized she wanted to adopt. Nine months after that she adopted a daughter named Harper. In 2012, she adopted another daughter named Emerson and had a third daughter by a surrogate in 2013 named Beckett. Family is important to her and she had very influential parents. Her mother raised her and her five siblings, while attending school and getting a Ph.D. in educational administration and her father, is the Chief Information Officer at USC.
While family and her daughters are very important the creator of Grey’s Anatomy doesn’t want to get married. She was in a serious relationship and decided it wasn’t for her. She’s perfectly happy going through life by herself with her kids and her work. There’s no telling what amazing show is next for Shonda Rhimes, but her career so far is nothing short of amazing and she’s the type of woman young girls should aspire to be.
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[Featured Image by Bryan Bedder/Getty Images]