‘Grey’s Anatomy’: Does Shonda Rhimes Still Write for the Show?

It’s almost impossible to separate Grey’s Anatomy from its creator. Shonda Rhimes has changed television for the better and has created a TV empire. But does she still write for the show? Here is everything you need to know.

Shonda Rhimes wrote episodes of ‘Grey’s Anatomy’

Ellen Pompeo and Shonda Rhimes of 'Grey's Anatomy' sit next to each other on stage.
Ellen Pompeo and Shonda Rhimes of ‘Grey’s Anatomy’ | Frederick M. Brown/Getty Images

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Rhimes created and wrote episodes of the medical show. It might surprise fans to learn that her first draft didn’t involve doctors at all.

“You know, I started out – the pilot that I wrote first was a pilot about journalists – it was about war correspondents, actually,” she told NPR. “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.”

Someone told Rhimes that Bob Iger wanted a medical show. So she changed the premise, and we got a pilot showing Meredith Grey (Ellen Pompeo) starting her medical internship.

Does Shonda Rhimes still write for the show?

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Rhimes has created many shows since the hit Grey’s Anatomy. So she doesn’t have as much time to write episodes. The last episode written by her was in season 7, and it was called “Song Beneath the Song.” It was a musical episode.

The show creator talked to Variety about why she has stopped writing. “Creatively, I’ve handed off all the reins entirely,” she said. “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.”

Rhimes added, “And I want very​ ​much this for this to be Krista Vernoff’s show, and Krista Vernoff’s creative vision.”

When did Krista Vernoff take over ‘Grey’s Anatomy’?

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Vernoff was previously a producer on Charmed, Wonderfalls, and was a consulting producer on Private Practice. She later became a co-producer of Grey’s Anatomy in season 2. Eventually, she took over the show in 2017.

She talked about the significant change with The Hollywood Reporter. “Shonda was saying, ‘I’m giving you the whole show,’ but I wasn’t going to come back if that wasn’t really true,” Vernoff 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.'”

So fans are now watching Vernoff’s vision when they’re watching Grey’s Anatomy. She’s also an executive producer on Station 19.