THR has published a new interview with Grey's showrunner, Shonda Rhimes were she talks about the death of one of the main characters on the show, the season finale, season 9 plans, Cristina potentially saying goodbye to her BFF Meredith, and Cristina and Owen. Here's the excerpt:
We've heard there's a big death in the finale. Could it be a character that affects the heart and soul of Seattle Grace? How big of a death is it?
It's a pretty big death. We're not talking [about] some guest star [who] is going to come in and die kind of thing; it's a big death and it's fairly shocking. It was hard, it was hard to write, it was hard to listen to at the table read. It is a difficult thing to do and not done lightly. When one of your main characters dies, it always affects the heart and soul of the hospital.
Compared to some of the previous finales that we've seen -- i.e. the hospital shooting -- where does this year's rank?
I don't know how to compare it. The shooting episode was done for a number of reasons; ultimately the point of it was to leave our entire group of people fresh, like naked babies in a weird way, in terms of being in an operating room and starting over. The intention of this episode is we're literally saying goodbye to people -- and possibly more than one person. In a weird way for me -- and I don't know if it will be this way for viewers -- it was much more painful than the shooting episode because there's something final about this, whereas the shooting episode felt like a journey that we were going through and then you came out the other side when it was over. You don't come out of the other side of this. Where we leave the end of the season is a little bit crazy. I kept saying to people, "This feels exactly like what should be happening, but it feels a little bit crazy." But it does feel like where we should be in that moment.
You mentioned saying goodbye to more than one person -- could we potentially see more than one death?
As we leave our season, we will have already seen a death, and there will be some lives in jeopardy.
How will the remaining episodes walk the line between writing characters out while still leaving the door open for their return should contract talks work out?
We have a very clear plan for what is going to happen next season. I already know how next season is going to lay out. Part of that plan doesn't necessarily mean that just because the doctor decides not return to Seattle Grace, it does not necessarily mean the doctor is not going to be on the show anymore.
Could we potentially see the show take place from two cities?
I'm not even going to speculate.
THR: How will Owen and Cristina struggle with her potential departure?
Shonda Rhimes: We've been very clear that everybody wants Cristina Yang. It's always been my intention that we portray that character as being extraordinarily gifted as a surgeon, and this is her moment where she's being offered the world from a number of different places. We're going to see her make a decision and see her try to decide what to do. For me, the thing that was most emotional was the prospect of Meredith and Cristina being split up. Yes, I think Cristina and Owen being split up would be a very difficult thing. But the idea that Meredith and Cristina were going to be split up -- that the twisted sisters were no longer going to be in the same place -- that's a prospect that they're all facing as they are looking at all of these different jobs in all these different places.
Could we potentially see Cristina and Owen agree to move on from the events of this year -- his cheating, her abortion -- and stay together by the end of the season?
We are not heading them toward, "Everything is going to be happy," or, "Everything is going to be horrible." It's not the point of the story that we are telling. By the end of the season, you will understand that that becomes -- I don't want to say the least of their concerns -- but I think you get a different understanding for what's important when you're put in a difficult situation. That is something that is going to happen for our characters, something that we can see potentially that builds into next season.
Full interview here