Ellen Pompeo talks ‘Grey’s Anatomy’

Ellen Pompeo talks

Ellen Pompeo talks Grey’s Anatomy. (Photo: Amy Sussman/Getty Images)

longtime Grey’s Anatomy star Ellen Pompeo answered questions from listeners on the latest episode of her podcast, Tell Me With Ellen Pompeo. When someone asked her which issue she would like the progressive medical drama to address next, she was candid.

“This is a tricky question to answer,” Pompeo said, “because the truth is we’ve covered a lot of very important topics… I think if I had any desire, honestly, it would be to be less sort of preachy in one episode about certain things.”

The Shonda Rimes created and produced the ABC show — on which Pompeo is also a producer — has tackled complicated subjects, including police brutality, immigration, abortion, racism, opioid addiction and much more, in its 18 seasons.

“It’s like, we do one episode about… let’s see, Asian hate crimes is one that we did this past season that was really moving,” Pompeo said. “I think I’d like to see things happen a little more subtly and over time. You know, consistently, and less sort of hit-you-over-the head with it for just one hour and then we never talk about it again . I wish we could sort of touch on these social issues that are important and relevant and sort of have them be threads throughout.”

Ellen Pompeo and another original cast member, James Pickens Jr., star on

Ellen Pompeo and another original cast member, James Pickens Jr., star on Grey’s Anatomy. (Photo: Kelsey McNeal/ABC/courtesy Everett Collection)

The Los Angeles Times confirmed Wednesday that Pompeo will appear in just eight episodes of the upcoming season, although she’ll continue as narrator and executive producer on each installment. (The last few seasons had between 17 and 25 episodes.)

Pompeo has cut her hours on the Emmy winner so she can produce and star in an eight-episode true crime series for Hulu, which, according to deadline, is currently being called the Untitled Orphan Project. It’s based on the bizarre story of a couple who adopted what they thought was a little girl with dwarfism but who they later alleged was much older and had tried to kill them.

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