It’s hard to believe that it’s been nearly 20 years since Grey’s Anatomy first made its way into our lives. Way back in 2005, ABC took a chance on a new medical drama from a then-unknown writer named Shonda Rhimes.
Fast forward to today, Rhimes is one of the most prolific writers in Hollywood and Grey’s Anatomy has become one of the most successful shows of all time. 20 seasons in, Grey’s shows no signs of slowing down and remains one of ABC’s most successful shows.
While there is some change on the horizon for the show including one of the show’s biggest cast shakeups in years, season 20 is sure to be another amazing season of the show as the ABC medical drama celebrates yet another milestone season as it joins an elite group of shows to pass the 20-season mark.
Read on to find out everything there is to know about the upcoming 20th season of Grey’s Anatomy!
When will Grey’s Anatomy season 20 premiere on ABC?
Originally, ABC was slated to release the twentieth season of Grey’s Anatomy this fall; however, due to the WGA and SAG-AFTRA strikes the show’s return has been delayed to 2024.
At this time, ABC has yet to release a premiere date for season 20 but it’s looking like the goal is for Grey’s Anatomy season 20 to premiere sometime in February 2024. While a premiere date has yet to be set, we do know Grey’s is expected to remain on Thursday nights on ABC.
According to The Hollywood Reporter, ABC is prioritizing the returns of Abbott Elementary and Grey’s Anatomy with writers rooms already having been opened on the show. The hope seems to be that the network can get the show ready to return by February which would be on pace with when ABC typically starts to roll out its midseason programming slate.
What happened in the Grey’s season 19 finale?
The Grey’s Anatomy season 19 finale was full of shocking revelations and we’d have expected nothing less from the show which is known for serving up some of the most shocking and eventful finales in all of television. Season 19 was no different with the season ending with several cliffhangers for fans to ponder over the break.
The biggest cliffhanger from the finale came in the final moments of the finale in which Teddy’s fate was left up in the air after she unexpectedly collapsed in the OR as she prepared to operate on Sam. When Owen made it to the OR, it was utter chaos with Sam going into cardiac arrest and bleeding out on the table as Teddy lay unconscious on the floor leading him to use a defibrillator as she flatlined.
Elsewhere in the finale, Jo and Link finally shared the kiss we’d been waiting to see after confessing their feelings for one another and exchanging I love yous. Love was also in the air in Boston as Nick and Meredith finally confessed their feelings for one another and decided to give their relationship another try.
Will Ellen Pompeo be back for Grey’s Anatomy season 20?
For the first time in the history of the show, Ellen Pompeo is not returning to Grey’s Anatomy as a series regular in season 20. That’s right, Meredith Grey will not be a mainstay across the upcoming season though we do expect to see Meredith back in some capacity in the upcoming season.
During Variety‘s Actors on Actors series, Pompeo told former co-star Katherine Heigl Meredith’s exit in season 19 was not designed as a final goodbye:
"“I will be making some appearances hopefully next year, if I can find some time,” she said. “It’s not a complete goodbye. And I think we’ve got an interesting story to tell.”"
While the exact number of episodes Pompeo will appear in remains unconfirmed, we do know that Pompeo is expected to continue to narrate the show which will keep her presence felt within every episode even when Meredith does not appear on screen.
Grey’s Anatomy season 20 cast
While Ellen Pompeo will be taking a reduced role in the upcoming twentieth season of Grey’s Anatomy, there is only one other major departure that has been confirmed ahead of the show’s upcoming season. Also exiting the cast ahead of season 20 is actress Kelly McCreary, who exited the show following the season 19 finale after ten seasons on the show, nine as a series regular.
Aside from Pompeo and McCreary, every other key cast member from season 19 is expected back with Scott Speedman’s fate being the only unknown piece of the puzzle as ABC has yet to confirm whether he’ll be exiting the show as a series regular as well.
As for who will be returning, here’s a breakdown of the key members of the cast who are slated to return for season 20:
- Jake Borelli as Dr. Levi Schmitt
- Chris Carmack as Dr. Atticus ‘Link’ Lincoln
- Alexis Floyd as Dr. Simone Griffin
- Midori Francis as Dr. Mika Yasuda
- Anthony Hill as Dr. Winston Ndugu
- Adelaide Kane as Dr. Jules Millin
- Camilla Luddington as Dr. Jo Wilson
- Kevin McKidd as Dr. Owen Hunt
- James Pickens Jr as Dr. Richard Webber
- Kim Raver as Dr. Teddy Altman
- Caterina Scorsone as Dr. Amelia Shepherd
- Harry Shum Jr as Dr. Daniel ‘Blue’ Kwan
- Niko Terho as Dr. Lucas Adams
- Chandra Wilson as Dr. Miranda Bailey
How many episodes might Grey’s Anatomy season 20 be?
There is a strong chance that Grey’s Anatomy season 20 might be one of the shortest seasons of the show, not by choice but as a result of the WGA and SAG-AFTRA strike delays.
Looking ahead to next season, most broadcast dramas are expected to consist of 10-15 episodes. Should Grey’s Anatomy fall into this group, season 20 might be the shortest season since season 1 which consisted of just nine episodes. This will be a far departure from recent episode counts for the show which have consisted of roughly 20-25 episodes.
Where is Grey’s Anatomy streaming?
If you’re missing Grey’s Anatomy this fall, the show is not far away! All 19 seasons of the show are available to stream on Netflix which gives audiences the chance to relive all of their favorite moments and to enjoy the show from the beginning!
Don’t have a Netflix subscription but want to rewatch season 19 before Grey’s returns in 2024? The most recent season of the show is also streaming on Hulu, meaning you can catch the complete nineteenth season on Hulu with an active subscription.