‘Grey’s Anatomy’: Will April and Matthew Ever Return? The Door Is Still Open

Grey’s Anatomy fans were shocked when April Kepner (Sarah Drew) ran off into the sunset with Matthew Taylor (Justin Bruening). For years, viewers watched April’s rollercoaster romance with Jackson Avery (Jesse Williams), only to end up with the man she left at the altar. But will April and Matthew ever return to Grey’s Anatomy? Here’s what Drew and Bruening have said about reprising their roles on the Shondaland medical drama.

What happened to April Kepner and Matthew Taylor on ‘Grey’s Anatomy’?

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April and Matthew met in Grey’s Anatomy Season 9. The trauma surgeon and paramedic seemed to hit it off right away, particularly because of their shared faith. But fans also knew the long history between Jackson and April.

Eventually, April and Matthew decided to get married, despite her lingering feelings for her best friend. Then at April and Matthew’s wedding ceremony, Jackson got up and confessed his love. So Jackson and April ran off together, leaving Matthew behind.

By Grey’s Anatomy Season 14, April and Jackson broke up. The trauma surgeon then reconnected with Matthew, who lost his wife and had a daughter of his own. Their reunion was uncomfortable at first. But as time went on,  the couple got back together. 

Later, at Jo Wilson (Camilla Luddington) and Alex Karev’s (Justin Chambers) wedding — which didn’t actually happen due to a series of unfortunate events — Matthew proposed to April. And when Alex and Jo’s officiant arrived at the scene, April and Matthew decided to tie the knot right away. Then the couple presumably received their happily ever after — away from Grey Sloan Memorial. 

Justin Bruening answers whether he would return to ‘Grey’s Anatomy’ as Matthew Taylor

Justin Bruening as Matthew and Sarah Drew as April on ABC's "Grey's Anatomy" - Season Fourteen
Justin Bruening as Matthew and Sarah Drew as April on ‘Grey’s Anatomy’ | Eric McCandless/Walt Disney Television via Getty Images

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In May 2020, Bruening made a splash on Netflix’s latest drama, Sweet Magnolias. Then when speaking with TV Insider about his new show, Bruening opened up about his role as Matthew on Grey’s Anatomy. The actor revealed he auditioned 20 times for the ABC medical drama before landing Matthew. Bruening then answered whether or not he would ever return to Grey’s Anatomy in the future. 

“My character isn’t dead,” he said. “Even on soaps, unless your head is separated from your body, there’s a way to find your way back. They didn’t kill me.”

Bruening continued, “Trust me, I asked. ‘I die in the next episode, right?’ They finally said, ‘Why do you think we’re going to kill you?’ I said, ‘You kill everybody!’ Fortunately, they did not kill me and I got to play on that show for a long time. It was one of the most fun roles of my career.”

Bruening also hinted Matthew is still around somewhere. So who knows what could happen in the future. “I’m still a working paramedic,” he said.

Sarah Drew shares whether she would reprise her role as April Kepner on ‘Grey’s Anatomy’

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Following her grand exit on Grey’s Anatomy, Drew has shared her thoughts on April’s return. And for the most part, it seemed the actor was willing to keep the door open. But she also acknowledged she needed to say goodbye to the character at the time.

“I’ll never say never because they are my family,” Drew told Entertainment Tonight in 2018. “I still love everyone over there. I love that community and I still have such an incredible space in my heart for everyone over there.”

She continued, “But I really do feel like, because of how it went down, I really had to part ways with April, I just had to. There was no way for me to live in a space of possibility of her returning and also be healthy in my letting go of all of it. So I really have said goodbye to her.”

A year later, the Grey’s Anatomy fandom wondered whether April would come back after showrunner Krista Vernoff hinted the show wanted to highlight the return of a former cast member in season 16. As we know now, this was never realized. However, when Drew was asked about returning, the actor confirmed she was open to the idea.

“I will never close the door on my family at Grey’s, so it just depends,” Drew told Entertainment Tonight in 2019. “It’s a hard question to answer because it is not an opportunity that has presented itself.”

Whether or not April and Matthew ever return to Grey’s Anatomy, at least the actors behind the characters are open to coming back. But for now, we’ll just have to add the reunion to our ever-growing wish list.

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