‘Grey’s Anatomy’: What Is T.R. Knight’s Full Name?

T.R. Knight was one of the original cast members of Grey’s Anatomy. For five seasons, he played Dr. George O’Malley, a surgical resident. However, Knight left the series in 2009, which was the beginning of the end for “M.A.G.I.C.”

Since his exit, fans have often wondered why he decided to exit the medical drama. Additionally, some longtime Grey’s viewers might not even know Knight’s full name. 

'Grey's Anatomy' actor T.R. Knight wearing light blue medical scrubs as George O'Malley.
‘Grey’s Anatomy’: T.R. Knight as Dr. George O’Malley | Vivian Zink/Walt Disney Television via Getty Images

‘Grey’s Anatomy’ alum T.R. Knight’s real name

Before Grey’s Anatomy, Knight was a working actor searching for his big break. According to IMDb, his earlier credits include roles on Law & Order and Frasier. After several years of working in Hollywood, Knight auditioned for Grey’s. Soon, he booked the character of George. 

Theodore Raymond 'T.R.' Knight attending an ABC event while wearing a blue shirt and black blazer.
T.R. Knight | Jamie McCarthy/Getty Images

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Grey’s Anatomy premiered in March 2005. Following its debut, fans couldn’t get enough of George and his friends Meredith Grey (Ellen Pompeo), Cristina Yang (Sandra Oh), Izzie Stevens (Katherine Heigl), and Alex Karev (Justin Chambers). 

In 2005, Knight spoke to The Chicago Tribune about the success of Grey’s. While speaking with the outlet, he explained that he trained at the highly regarded Guthrie Theater. Although his name is Theodore Raymond Knight, the actor shared that he only uses his initials publicly. 

Why the George O’Malley actor goes by his initials

 Knight explained why he chooses to only go by his first and middle initial during the same Chicago Tribune interview. He shared that the people in his life rarely call him Theodore Raymond, and he didn’t want to add it when he became famous. 

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“My birth certificate says ‘Theodore Raymond,’ but I’ve been called ‘T.R.’ since I was a baby,” Knight said. 

The George O’Malley actor also elaborated on his career before Grey’s. While growing up in Minneapolis, Knight started acting when he was a child. He also said studying at Guthrie prepared him for his future roles. 

“I learned a lot, and I was happy to be there,” Knight said. “It’s not easy filling that huge house and that severe stage. Just the technical demands are pretty daunting. And just to be in a theater that has so many resources: dialogue coach, vocal coach, the costumes, everything so elaborate. I didn’t go to a theater training school, but that was a great learning experience.”

What does T.R. Knight do now?

After five seasons on Grey’s, Knight decided to exit the show. In an interview with Entertainment Weekly, he asked to leave the series due to his character’s significant plot changes. During season 3, Knight’s on-screen persona angered Grey’s fans when George cheated on Callie (Sara Ramirez) with his best friend, Izzie. 

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“My five-year experience proved to me that I could not trust any answer that was given [about George],” he explained. “And with respect, I’m going to leave it at that.”

Since leaving Grey’s in 2009, Knight has worked on several other projects. Some of the actor’s recent credits include Will & Grace, The Bravest Knight, The Catch, another Shondaland show.

 Although he moved on, Knight returned to Grey’s as George in 2020.