Most fans don’t know anything about what happens behind the scenes of their loved television shows; they’re just concerned about what day the shows come on and if their favorite characters are doing okay.
However, so much goes on that fans don’t even know about. From the producers to the writers and people in charge of the budget, there’s always something going on behind the scenes.
This is backbreaking work, and Shonda Rhimes has certainly done it right if her work on “Grey’s Anatomy” is any indication.
GA is currently in its 18th season, and it still remains a crowd favorite. This is all thanks to the effort of Rhimes, who has been wielding her pen most mightily behind the scenes.
But is she still writing the script for the series? Keep reading to find out.
Shonda Rhimes Is The Writer Behind ‘Grey’s Anatomy’
“Grey’s Anatomy” may be doing exploits now in the history of medical drama series, but this was not the original idea Rhimes had for the show. While preparing her first draft, the “Scandal” writer didn’t include doctors; in fact, the plot was about Journalists.
During her interview with NPR, Rhimes said, “You know, I started out – the pilot that I wrote first was a pilot about journalists – it was about war correspondents, actually. And it was about very strong, competitive women who really enjoyed covering war. And it didn’t get made because we were kind of at war and they’d felt inappropriate, actually, to see people really enjoying covering war when real soldiers were dying.”
The writer changed the story when she heard that former ABC president Bob Iger wanted a medical drama.
So instead of a series about journalists covering war stories, we got to see Meredith Grey as a new intern in the Grey Sloan Memorial Hospital.
Is Rhimes Still Writing For The Show?
There have been many changes in Rhimes‘ life in the past few years, including a massive deal with Netflix.
The writer has spent over 14 years at ABC writing shows like “Grey’s Anatomy,” “Scandal,” and she became the executive producer of “How to Get Away with murder.” So, it’s not shocking that she needed a change of scenery was expected.
Rhimes told Variety about why she stopped writing, “Creatively, I’ve handed off all the reins entirely. And the best reason I can say for doing that is because if I had any creative involvement, then I would have notes. And if I had notes, people would have to take those notes. And if people had to take those notes, then suddenly it’s not their show anymore.”
She added, “And I want very much for this to be Krista Vernoff’s show and Krista Vernoff’s creative vision.” The last episode she wrote in “Grey’s Anatomy was in season 7, and it was a musical episode titled “Song Beneath the Song.”
Why Rhimes Left ABC
Three years after she left the show, Rhimes opened up to The Hollywood Reporter concerning why she left.
“I felt like I was dying. Like I’d been pushing the same ball up the same hill in the exact same way for a really long time,” she admitted. Rhimes wrote the episodes of “Grey’s Anatomy” for over a decade until she left in 2017.
The “Scandal” writer told The Hollywood Reporter that one of the reasons she left was an incident that involved Disneyland, an unnecessary ticket tussle for her sister, and a biting remark made by a high-ranking executive. Her next action after was to call her lawyer and demand to be let out of the contract with ABC.
“The reason I came to Netflix is because I wanted to be able to make television without anybody bothering me,” she said. “And as long as I get to keep making television without anybody bothering me, I’m happy.” She signed the deal with Netflix, and Krista Vernoff, who worked with Rhimes when the show started, came back as the showrunner.
Krista Vernoff Became The New Writer For GA
After Rhimes pulled out, Krista Vernoff came on as the head writer and executive producer of “Grey’s Anatomy” in season 7.
She was also the brains behind several episodes of “Private Practice” and a consulting producer on the show.
In her interview with The Hollywood Reporter, Vernoff spoke about when Rhimes handed the show over to her, “Shonda was saying, ‘I’m giving you the whole show,’ but I wasn’t going to come back if that wasn’t really true,” the “Station 19” executive producer said.
“It was literally like, ‘I will have full autonomy in the editing room, including music.’ ‘Yes.’ ‘I will have full autonomy over the scripts.’ ‘Yes.’ ‘I will have full autonomy over casting’ — with what we agreed was the exception of series regulars and Meredith’s love interests. ‘Yes.'”