Details surrounding Patrick Dempsey’s exit from Grey’s Anatomy don’t sound dreamy at all.
Dempsey played the character of Derek Shepherd, often called “McDreamy,” in the hit medical drama TV series.
In an excerpt published by The Hollywood Reporter from Lynette Rice’s upcoming book, How to Save a Life: The Inside Story of Grey’s Anatomy, the show’s former executive producer James Parriott said Dempsey was “terrorizing the set,” which caused some cast members to suffer from post-traumatic stress disorder or PTSD.
“He had this hold on the set where he knew he could stop production and scare people. The network and studio came down and we had sessions with them. I think he was just done with the show. He didn’t like the inconvenience of coming in every day and working,” Parriott said.
“There were issues. It wasn’t sexual in any way,” he added.
It was also reported that lead star Ellen Pompeo was frustrated with Dempsey for “not working as much.”
A longtime crew member said that Dempsey felt he should have left when co-star Sandra Oh quit the show after 10 seasons.
Dempsey stayed due to the lucrative monetary rewards. “They were dumping money on me,” Dempsey said.
Another executive producer, Jeannine Renshaw, said there were more complaints until the show’s creator Shonda Rhimes witnessed the final straw.
The tell-all book also indicated that three different scenarios were prepared to help Dempsey exit from the show. But they had to settle on killing Derek Shepherd because “there was no exit that would honor that character other than if he were to die.”