Isaiah Washington has opened up about his departure from Grey’s Anatomy.
The 50-year-old was fired from the series after he used a homophobic slur during an argument on set in October 2006. Washington allegedly used the word in reference to co-star T.R. Knight while arguing with Patrick Dempsey. Shortly after the argument went public, Knight came out as a gay.
Washington repeated the word backstage at the Golden Globes in January 2007, saying that he “never called T.R. a f****t.” Knight said “everybody heard” Washington use the word.
“After the incident at the Golden Globes, everything just fell apart. Everything literally stopped. Whatever the agenda, whatever the plan was, it worked. I lost everything,” Washington told HuffPost Live. “I couldn’t afford to have an agent. I couldn’t afford to have a publicist for crisis management to continue [acting]. It’s not that I didn’t want to. I had a wife and three kids.”
“I’m giving it to you straight. I could not afford to continue. I went from $2 million a year to residual checks, zero. I couldn’t even get another apartment after I turned in my lease for my $3 million home. I had to put it in my wife’s name. No one wanted to touch the name of Isaiah Washington for three years.”
Washington said he went “underground” and became a “better husband, a better father, and then a better artist” after the incident. He said Facebook helped him make new connections.
“I just said, ‘God, release me of this dynamic – you know my truth, you know my hurt, but there’s nothing I can do about it, I simply do not have the money or the power to compete with a behemoth of a media that has already tried and convicted me even though I’m saying this is not the truth,'” he said.
Isaiah Washington stars in Blue Caprice, based on the true story of the DC snipers. The film opened in theaters Friday, September 13.