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Katherine Heigl Weighs In On Her Return To Grey's Anatomy

Katherine Heigl has finally weighed in on one of Grey's Anatomy's most dramatic departures — as well as whether or not she might ever return to the show. Spoilers for Grey's Anatomy ahead!

After leaving the hit ABC series — which recently surpassed E.R. to become the longest-running medical drama in television history — part way through its sixth season in 2010, Heigl, who played Dr. Isobel "Izzie" Stevens from the show's inception, embarked on other projects. However, in season sixteen, which aired in the spring of 2020, Heigl made a surprising return... though she remained off-screen.

When news broke that Justin Chambers, who played Dr. Alex Karev and was one of the only remaining original cast members left on the show, decided to depart part way through season sixteen, viewers wondered how the series would handle such an abrupt departure. The answer turned out to be pretty unsatisfying: Alex left his life, wife, and friends at Grey Sloan Memorial Hospital in Seattle behind to be with his former love, Izzie, and their children.

Though both Heigl and Chambers remained off screen for Alex's devastating exit, Heigl, who is currently promoting her new Netflix series Firefly Lane, recently spoke out about maybe returning to Grey's Anatomy someday... and didn't say it was out of the question.

Katherine Heigl can't rule out a return to Grey's Anatomy

When asked if she would ever return to Seattle to practice medicine once again, Heigl didn't rule it out on E!'s Daily Pop, saying, "I don't know, but I would never say never." She also weighed in on Alex's controversial decision while speaking with Entertainment Tonight during her Firefly Lane press tour, saying, "Listen, isn't that an a**hole move?"

However, in that same Daily Pop interview, Heigl seemed to throw some serious shade at her Grey's Anatomy experiences. "You know, every single one of us has probably had that experience where, when you try to stand up for something or put your foot down about something, you're either hysterical or difficult or being a b*tch, you know?" Heigl said, when asked about her recent filming experiences. "That didn't exist on this set [Firefly Lane]. There was none of that. And you felt really protected. I am incredibly grateful for the experience. It was phenomenal."

It's no secret that the drama between Grey's creator Shonda Rhimes and Heigl led the actress to leave the show. Between Heigl removing herself from Emmy consideration for her role to Rhimes' comments about not allowing "Heigls" or "nasty people" on her other shows like Scandal, there's no love lost between the two, which would seem to make a return pretty unlikely. However, Heigl's right: "Never say never."

Grey's Anatomy is currently in its seventeenth season, and the entire series is streaming on both Netflix and Hulu now.