Grey's Anatomy remains a powerhouse for ABC in the ratings, but the beloved series could be reaching its conclusion.

The series is entering its 18th (!!!) season next month, and naturally, many things have been left up in the air.

A renewal for Season 18 wasn't even a sure thing due to ongoing talks between Ellen Pompeo and the network about whether she would return.

Below, we've rounded up everything we know about Grey's Anatomy Season 18.

Grey's Anatomy Season 18 Could be the Final Season

It's sad, but it's true. The series is reaching its end sooner rather than later.

Pompeo has been vocal about the show potentially ending at any point in recent years, so the future is not confirmed until it nabs renewals these days.

From a rating standpoint, the show could thrive for several years yet. It makes a lot of money for Disney, both domestically and internationally.

Ultimately, the decision will come down to Ellen Pompeo, who has a longstanding deal with Shonda Rhimes for the show to wrap when she leaves.

Which Original Stars Will be Back?

Ellen Pompeo, Chandra Wilson, and James Pickens Jr. closed one-year deals to return for Grey's Anatomy Season 18.

This means that new deals will have to be struck should the show stick around for Grey's Anatomy Season 19.

Pompeo's future on the show was thrown into question on Grey's Anatomy Season 17 when she was in a coma due to COVID-19.

It allowed the character to meet with many faces from the past, including Derek, George, Owen, and Lexi.

Who Else Will be Back?

Camilla Luddington, Kim Raver, and Kevin McKidd were already signed up for future seasons because the trio signed multi-year deals in 2020.

Jake Borelli has posted on Instagram Stories, teasing his return for Grey's Anatomy Season 18.

Aside from those who have publicly exited the series in recent months, everyone else should be back.

Will There be More Ghosts?

If you watch Grey's Anatomy online, you know we met several deceased characters, and the fun will not be ending there.

Deadline recently revealed that Kate Burton would be back as Meredith's mother, Ellis, for Season 18.

The role is described as being for multiple episodes, but there's no telling whether it will be in the beach dream setting.

Burton was with the show regularly until the third season and has popped back up multiple times since.

Who Won't Be Back?

Giacomo Gianniotti exited the show midway through the most recent season, with his character being killed off brutally.

Jessie Williams bowed out as Jackson Avery toward the end of Grey's Anatomy Season 17.

Similarly, Greg Germann exited as Thomas Koracick, but it was said that he could stop by in some capacity down the line.

He just won't be a series regular.

Will Patrick Dempsey Return Again?

With more ghosts from the past returning, a big question will always be whether Dempsey could come back as Derek.

There was a sense of finality during Season 17 when Derek and Meredith last met, and Dempsey has been open about not ruling out a comeback.

“I thought it was a beautiful way to close it,” Dempsey declared to Variety earlier this year.

“The intention was to really give people some hope because they are such an iconic couple. We’ve lost so many people this year, the thought that we’d have angels hovering around us taking care of us is a good message to send out in such a bleak world that we’re living in."

"So for all of us, it was a beautiful ending to this story. I’m so grateful that I did it and happy that the fans really loved it.”  

Production is Underway

Production kicked off in the middle of August, with Pompeo sharing a behind-the-scenes video of her back on the set.

“Guess what time it is?? #GreysSeason18 with @deskikole and,” she wrote alongside the post.

Luddington also returned to work around the same time and said she was collecting photos from behind the scenes to post when the series returns.

A Major Revamp Could be on the Way

The series has beaten the odds to last 18 seasons, but the show could transform into something new to keep things fresh.

There also could be more series set in the Grey's Anatomy universe.

“Krista and the team are really digging deep and finding out what that looks like. They are noodling ideas, and I can’t wait to when we land on what that is to introduce the next phase of Grey’s Anatomy,” ABC Signature President Jonnie Davis explained to Deadline earlier this year.

“We will find the next version that will take it to the next 18 years. We’re working on for right now, and there’s no better brains to figure it out than Krista and Shonda.”

When Does Grey's Anatomy Season 18 Premiere?

The beloved series returns Thursday, September 29 at 9/8c, sandwiched between Station 19 and Big Sky.

Will There More Grey's X Station 19 Crossover Events?

Love them or hate them, the crossovers are here to stay. Both shows tend to get a lift during these events, and ABC was happy with the results.

“The writers, directors, casts, and crews of Grey’s Anatomy and Station 19 worked so hard to bring these shows to life this past season,” Vernoff said in a statement when both shows were renewed.

“Keeping each other safe on set while paying tribute to the front-line heroes and first responders has been a challenge and a privilege. I’ve been truly blown away – particularly by our tireless crews – as they reinvented the TV-making wheel. "

"Thank you to ABC and ABC Signature for the support and extraordinary partnership through this unprecedented season. We are so grateful for the opportunity to tell more stories.”



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