It isn't just a 24 episode series that has been on the air from 2005 until this very day, but a cult - if you will. Grey's Anatomy is almost a lifestyle. If you've watched this life-altering show, from the very beginning (or maybe even season seven and onward) you can attest to an emotional attachment and connection to your TV screen and the characters of the fictional hospital drama like none other. Every single character either past or present on Grey's Anatomy has the ability to make you search within yourself and answer some of life's deepest and most thought-provoking questions while making you laugh and even cry. And well, we owe one of TV's best shows to date to the one and only, Queen Shonda Rhimes.
Although Grey's Anatomy was her first show and is currently her longest running, Rhimes hasn't ceased to amaze audiences worldwide as she's reinvented complex, relatable characters and has managed to claim an entire weeknight block on ABC (and countless other channels nationwide). With shows like Scandal (that recently came to an end) and How To Get Away With Murder, there is no question of Shonda's reign and her ability to captivate us all through her depiction of these beautiful stories. Thursday nights belong to the queen and her team - #ThankGodItsThursday indeed. With the current and fourteenth season of Grey's Anatomy coming to an end (with no anticipated series finale in the near future), Grey's fans everywhere can expect to be taken on an emotional rollercoaster for seasons to come.
The following is an ode to past characters we've watched and loved and a little information we've been curious to know about.
Thank you, Shonda and all the cast for bringing these wonderful stories to life.P.S at the end of this season, Jessica Capshaw who plays Arizona Robbins and April Kepner played by Sarah Drew will be joining this list and leaving Grey Solan Memorial Hospital for good (we think). Oh and if you haven't watched the series and plan on doing so, this is your official spoiler alert.
Canadian actress Sandra Oh served the world with her witty attitude from the very beginning throughout ten amazing seasons. Christina Yang brought a unique element of unapologetic genius to Seattle Grace Hospital. Although the former interns and surgeons of earlier seasons were uniquely themselves and incredibly talented, Yang created her own lane and when she left, we shed a tear. There has been a void in our hearts ever since, forever yearning for the day that yang might make a comeback.
Meredith's 'person', Sandra Oh has starred in a number of feature films and other television series even during her time on Grey's, including the controversial thriller Hard Candy (2004) and Rabbit Hole (2010). She's done voice roles in animation such as in American Dragon: Jake Long and the voice of princess Ting Ting in Mulan II (2004). Oh has won countless accolades, including a star on the Canadian Walk Of Fame (people rarely hear about it, but it exists).
As of late, she acts in BBC America's murder mystery series Killing Eve, earning up to 350 thousand per episode.
Her current net worth is estimated at about 25 million dollars. With that kind of money, it doesn't seem like Yang will be making a come back to Grey Solan Memorial Hospital anytime soon.
Who could forget the brilliant cardiothoracic surgeon Doctor Preston Burke? When he first stepped on the scene as Christina Yang's attending and mentor (and later on fiancé), actor Isaiah Washington's character was extremely dominant. He had an obvious rough exterior, but whose character episode after episode won us all over with his caring heart. Washington's contract was not renewed after season three, after some backstage controversy regarding T.R Knight (and apparently Patrick Dempsey). Although Dr. Burke did make a heartfelt short return in season 10 amongst Yang's departure, actor Washington has gone on t0 do exceptional work.
Prior to Washington's role in Grey's Anatomy, he was a seasoned actor that made appearances in a number of Spike Lee Joints and brought characters to life such as Savon Garrison in Love Jones (1997). He starred in large blockbuster films like Dancing In September (2000) and Blue Caprice (2013), along with a countless number of TV guest appearances on shows like Law & Order SVU and Touched By An Angel. Isaiah Washington's most current major role was as Chancellor Thelonious Jaha on the hit Netflix series The 100, though he is rumored to not be returning as a series regular. In any case, according to Fame10.com, Washington is worth 500 thousand as of late. This can be hard to believe as The 100 is a hit show, but we'll save the speculations for another day.
If you are a Grey's Anatomy fan you might agree that George O'Malley's departure from the show was probably one of the worst to date. Especially as an original intern and veteran doctor of the show, he deserved more than to leave and not even be recognized. The role was played so honestly and innocently by T.R Knight but apparently, after season five, there was a drastic change in Knight's airtime. According to Entertainment Weekly, Knight asked Rhimes to be let out of his $14 million dollar contract three years early. Why? Any (sane) person might ask, as a lead character in the peak of a hit show...
Knight claims that it took Rhimes months to take action after the incident involving Isaiah Washington. And in that time Knight could feel an apparent rift between him and the show creator which he believes evidently played a role in his minimal screen time. When asked about his decision Knight responded, "There are a lot of people who would like to be in my position,” he says. “But in the end, I need to be fulfilled in my work — that’s more important than the money."
Even in his departure, he remained a class act despite being run over by a bus (quite literally).
Upon walking away from television, Knight hit the Broadway scene and starred in David Mamet's A Life in the Theater (2010), had a returning guest role in The Good Wife and most recently was welcomed back on a newer Shondaland show, The Catch. Although the later was canceled, Knight seems to be doing alright for himself as his estimated net worth is 3 million dollars. However, his earnings since leaving Grey's are not found.
Katherine Heigl also had a falling out on the Shondaland set, however, she was specifically let go and not given the privilege of humbly stepping down. It can be a cold world at times. But the way actress Heigl went out doesn't change the way she came in, and that was as original intern Isobel 'Izzie' Stevens along with Yang, O'Malley, Alex Karev and Meredith Grey. We went through quite a few emotional rollercoasters with Stevens, like her journey paying through medical school by lingerie modeling, her relationship with patient Denny Duquette and Alex Karev.
Before Stevens' departure from the show (at the beginning of season 6) she was asked to be let go 18 months prior to the end of her contract. But then get this, she asked to come back...to which Shonda kindly declined and let her know that after being written out of the show, there were no intentions of her character coming back any time soon. Heigl starred in The Ugly Truth (2009), Killers (2010) and went on to star in an NBC series State of Affairs which was unfortunately canceled after the first season.
So what are her earnings, as of right now, in this present day and time? Well, Heigl seems to be doing alright, despite the fact that in 2014 she told TMZ that she "hadn't made that much in the last few years", after a failed Indiegogo campaign attempt. In 2012, it was rumored that Heigl made 15 million in the film One For The Money and was in the erotic film Unforgettable (2017) that grossed 4.7 million in the box office opening weekend and recently signed a deal as a new partner in USA Network's Suits in 2018. From the looks of things, her hard work has paid off.
Oh, Doctor Addison Montgomery-Shepard, our hearts sunk for her when we found out that her and McDreamy's marriage had fallen apart and was apparently unreconcilable. To our surprise, she wasn't the bitter, scorned ex-wife we had hoped for her to be. Played by Kate Walsh, fetal and neonatal, Dr. Montgomery was introduced a little after the original premiere and guest starred throughout the following few seasons. Unlike a few of her cast mates above, Addison wasn't exiled from the hospital drama or ask to leave her contract but rather given a spin-off show, Private Practice where she ran a wellness group in Santa Monica.
According to Forbes, during her running on Private Practice, she was one of the highest paid actresses, earning $270 000 per episode.
Since leaving her character as Addison, Walsh has made a number of guest acting appearances on CSI and Law & Order as well as in films Under The Tuscan Sun (2003) and The Perks Of Being A Wallflower (2012). She can be found in the NBC sitcom Bad Judge and played her most recent big role as Olivia Baker on the Netflix drama 13 Reasons Why (2017). Today, she is rumored to be worth $22 million. Kudos to you Kate Walsh - not bad, not bad at all.
Doctor Mark Sloan, the man we all loved to hate and then quickly learned to love. McSteamy, played by Eric Dane, started off as a guest star and the best friend of Derek Shepard. Until he was depicted as the straw that broke the camel's back and well, apparently blew Addison's back out, as he was the culprit of the affair. But enough about that, because until his tragic past in season nine, we loved Sloan - and so did Lexie and Torres and well even Derek. Eric Dane, on the other hand, was no stranger to the big screen in the early 2000's he starred as a series regular in Charmed (1998) and later appeared in the apocalyptic drama The Last Ship (2014). His popular movies roles include X-Men: The Last Stand (2006), Marley & Me (2008) and Valentine's Day (2010).
With all those notable roles, TheRichest.com claims Eric Dane's net worth can be estimated in and around 7 million dollars as of late 2017. Since then, there is no apparent mention of any current television or movies roles and as a result no recent update on his total income. Hopefully, we'll see McSteamy appear in something soon!
Chyler Leigh joined the Grey's Anatomy cast as a dedicated intern in season three and later on became Doctor Lexie Grey. If you aren't a fan of the show (and have happened to make it this far through this article shout out to you) it may not be very obvious that anyone with the last name "Grey" is related to Meredith Grey, the main character and in this case, Lexie was her half-sister. Although viewers weren't entirely aware of where Lexie came from or that she was related to another on film, we were quickly aquatinted and equally shocked.
She (like McSteamy) had a tragic exit scene, just as we drew close to her character. This is expected as a Shondaland fan - no one's safe.
Prior to Leigh's role in Grey's, she starred in 7th Heaven (1996) and a That's 70 Show (1998) spin-off, That 80's Show (bet you didn't know that was a thing). Leigh also was the star of Not Another Superhero Movie (2001) with the future Captain America Chris Evans and later in the DC comic book series Supergirl (2015) within the CW's Arrowverse franchise, which is still currently on air. Screenrant.com notes Leigh as one the richest actors in the franchise with a net worth of $5 million dollars to date.
McDreamy...McDreamy...McDreamy - (probably) the sole reason why women religiously watched Grey's Anatomy. He was the closest thing to the 'perfect' man, even though we all knew that didn't exist. But for one night a week, for 11 seasons, we watched with open hearts (and jaws), gasping at the brilliant Doctor Derek Shepard's every word and move. Then-BOOM!- just like that, Patrick Dempsey's fine-self was cast off the show, at the hands of inexperienced doctors, whom Grey's viewers (and Meredith) will likely never forgive.
Dempsey asked to be let go from the hospital drama and claims he wanted to branch off and try new things such as producing films and auto-racing. It is no question that Dempsey's charm and good looks have landed him a number of accolades outside of acting. He's been awarded People's 'Sexiest Man Alive' title twice, not to mention being the face of L'Oreal, Versace and featured in multiple Serengeti sunglass ads. In 2014 alone, during his last season of Grey's, Dempsey was rumored to be earning $400 000 per episode. So, amidst all his acting and endorsements, McDreamy's estimated net worth is currently a whopping $60 million.
Doctor Callie Torres has one of the most random storyline trajectories in Grey's history. Sara Ramirez playing Torres started off as a recurring guest character in season two then became a regular cast member through season twelve. Ramirez's character discovered her true self on the show after dating O'Malley, and shortly seeing Mark Solan (as friends with benefits) then dating Arizona, all the while being a brilliant orthopedic intern and eventual attending surgeon.Then Doctor Torres sort of disappeared into thin air after taking a leave with her then-girlfriend Penny to the east coast.
It turns out during contract negotiations Ramirez's destiny wasn't quite accounted for and well...she was quietly let go (hence the no closure).
Prior to Grey's Anatomy, Sara Ramírez was a singer, songwriter and Broadway actress (who graduated from Julliard). She even had a self-titled EP debut at number thirty-seven on the Billboard 200. As of late, Ramírez plays the season regular, Kat Sandoval on CBS's political drama series Madam Secretary (2014). Although Ramírez's earnings per episode are not revealed, Madam Secretary signed a multi-platform syndication deal of an estimated $2 million dollars per episode. So as a series regular, I think it's safe to say to assume she's doing just fine.
Doctor Erica Hahn was played by Brooke Smith in season two through five. In spite of the fact that she was only a reoccurring cast member on Grey's for a short while, she was tangled up in one heck of a relationship with Doctor Torres prior to her departure. Keep in mind that Doctor Hahn was a heart surgeon, so the real irony lies in the fact that she fled from the fictional hospital after having her heart broken. I guess even surgeons that can fix broken hearts can't figure out how to keep from having one in the metaphorical sense - life's unfair.
Writers claim that Dr. Hahn was written out of the show because they didn't feel like her chemistry with Dr.Torres would sustain itself through a long-term relationship. Since the 2009 season five finale, Smith has made a number of guest appearances on shows like Homicide (1993), Law & Order (1990) and American Horror Story (2011). As of 2017, Smith's final major TV appearance was on A&E's Bates Motel (2013), as reoccurring character Sheriff Jane Greene. Her current net worth is estimated at about $750 thousand.
The bubbly Doctor Murphy was a member of one of the newer set of interns that decided to embark on their journey to their doctorate at Grey Sloan Memorial Hospital. Tessa Ferrer, played an incredibly annoying character but she was endearing in a way - at least Arizona thought so. Of course, she was fired then hired again then let go again, but whose life journey is ever linear anyhow. Ferrer has had a pretty solid career even before she hit the fictional hospital scene. If you are looking to catch any of her previous work, you can find her in a number of short films like Nobody's Night (2009) and Red Rare Veins (2010) to name a few. She won Best Actress in the First Run Film Festival and Shockerfest International Film Festival for her role in Excision (2008). Since Grey's, Ferrer has had a couple recurring TV roles in shows like the CBS series Extent (2014) and the FXX series You're The Worst (2015).
According to MarriedBiography.com (who documents these things anyway), Tessa Ferrer has a cumulative worth of $10 million dollars.
Which is great, considering Shonda and the team booted her behind, not once - but twice. This number is expected to go up as Ferrer has two feature films hitting the big scene later on this year. In 2018, you can catch Ferrer in Insidious: The Last Key and The Passing Parade.
Intern turned Doctor Shane Ross was sort of like the male version of Christina Yang. At first, Ross idolized Doctor Derek Shepard but quickly found passion working with Yang. Not only was he a fast learner but an eager intern that was willing to task risks and well, push anyone in his way to the curb - a young Yang indeed. When Yang took the job in Zurich at the Klausman Institute for Medical Research, Ross followed like a true protege. Unlike a few of the other former Grey's Anatomy stars mentioned in this article, actor Gaius Charles is behind the radar and rarely seen making public appearances or interviews or caught talking badly about Shonda and the writers. I guess that means a comeback for Dr.Ross is not completely off the table.
Apart from his role on Grey's, Charles is probably best known for his role on Friday Night Lights as Brian 'Smash' Williams. Nowadays, Charles can also be found in NBC historical drama series Aquarius. He can also be found in Marvel's Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D and Law & Order (wow, everyone and their mama can be found in Law & Order). He also played a role in Salt with Angelina Jolie and Taken (which was adapted to a TV series in 2017). Let's just say Charles is not struggling for money or roles. The handy-dandy internet sums up Charles' net worth at $500 000, which seems a little low to me, but perhaps some choose to have their finances kept off the internet.
My girl Doctor Stephanie Edwards was played by Jerrika Hinton. In every set of interns there is one or two standout doctors to be and in her class, Edwards was most definitely one of those standout trainees. She was sort of the hospital activist and constantly standing as the moral compass for her fellow interns and sometimes even her attendees. You could count on Edwards to give you the raw, and sometimes harsh truth, but that's what made her such a great friend and doctor.
In a bittersweet tradeoff, Edwards' truth and martyr spirit led to her demise and eventually aided in her decision to take a break and potentially no longer be a doctor after the hospital lockdown and fire.
Jerrika Hinton brought Dr. Edwards to life from season nine till thirteen. Since then Hinton was the star of another Shonda show entitled Toast (2016), which was a comedy series that did not make it to pilot season. In 2018 Hinton was also the lead in an HBO original series Here And Now. The show did not make it past the first season, but surely the talented actress will make a come back to the big television screen in no time. Hinton's annual salary has not been revealed but her current net worth is an estimated 800 thousand dollars.
Doctor Nathan Riggs was one of those characters that joined the show as a former friend directly related to an existing character's storyline. In fact, come to think of it, Shonda and her team of writers bring these sorts of characters on board regularly (I feel like I've just cracked a code). Played by Martin Henderson, Dr.Riggs was friends with Dr. Hunt and they were fellow U.S Army trauma surgeons. While on the show, Henderson had a pretty fruitful storyline apart from being Hunt's friend, he had a deceased fiancée (who eventually was found...alive) and a short-lived romance with Meredith. Instead of being killed off or having a feud with the creator, Dr. Riggs' character actually left the hospital and show with a happy ending, and moved to L.A with his wife to be and her adopted son.
Before making his appearance on Grey's, Henderson starred opposite Naomi Watts in The Ring (2002) and had a role in Mr & Mrs Smith (2005). Prior to playing a TV surgeon, Henderson even dibbled and dabbled into the music video scene, starring as Britney Spears' love interest in her music video for 'Toxic'. Since, acting as a fictional trauma surgeon in seasons twelve through thirteen, Henderson's biggest role to date has been in the horror film The Strangers (2018) sequel entitled 'Prey At Night'. Again, this actor's earnings per gig are not disclosed but his net worth is an estimated $500 000.
Marika Dominczyk played Doctor Eliza Minnink, one of the most recent cast-off's from the Grey Solan Memorial Hospital. Her departure was quite unfortunate as she was brought in as a means to help update the methods used by the teaching hospital to teach new interns and effectively to help more patients. Well, that quickly changed as her advanced teaching methods ruffed the feathers of nearly every attendee at the hospital. With great regret from our favorite chief of staff Miranda Bailey (and much applause from us, the viewers) Doctor Minnick got the boot from the hospital (and Arizona).
No one's got anything against Marika Dominczyk personally, it was just her awful character that we didn't like. Before her role in Grey's Anatomy, she starred in The 40-Year-Old Virgin (2005), ABC's Brothers & Sisters (2006) and guest starred in a number of other TV drama series. Since then, it looks like Dominczyk has taken a break from acting, perhaps to focus on her family life. Fun fact, Dominczyk is married to Scott Foley another Shondaland actor - Jake Ballard on ABC's Scandal (2012). Dominczyk's overall earnings and savings amount to an estimated 7.5 million dollars.