Skip Nav
What's New on Netflix in August: Nostalgic Classics and 1 of 2016's Best Musicals
Game of Thrones
What Euron's Bloody Defeat of Yara and Theon Means For Game of Thrones
Game of Thrones
36 Emotions That Coursed Through Your Veins During Game of Thrones This Week

Shonda Rhimes Says Heigl Asked for Lighter Material

Grey's Anatomy creator Shonda Rhimes said she was surprised but not insulted when Katherine Heigl made her now-infamous comments about withdrawing from the Emmy race — and the reason is pretty intriguing.

"In the back half of the season, Katherine asked me personally to write her light so that she could do her movie," Rhimes told critics during a panel for ABC showrunners at the TCA press tour. She also noted that the way Heigl's storyline with TR Knight, who plays George, played out ended up being lighter than many of Izzie's previous stories.

Rhimes said she did find it "surprising" when that news hit the press. "I actually have a really wonderful working relationship with Katherine, and I love and respect her as an actress," she said. "Izzie is one of my favorite characters."

"It was surprising, but Katie is an outspoken person," Rhimes added. "I think we all know that already."

Oh, and no, she wouldn't say anything about killing Izzie.


Join The Conversation
ShopGal10 ShopGal10 9 years
We all have opinions, but I would think twice before biting the hand that feeds me.
Ilovechemist Ilovechemist 9 years
A lot have been said by Shonda that day and funny it was not cover here: Rhimes: Marc is right. In a lot of instances, the story that’s out in the press is only one side of the story. A reporter sees it from their perspective and they report what they see. And sometimes that’s not everything that’s going on and that’s not everything that’s underneath something. For me, it’s about these people are my family. I literally work with them sometimes six days a week, 16 hours a day. I KNOW THEM IN A WAY THAT A LOT OF PEOPLE CAN'T POSSIBLY. And I’ve watched all of them from being lovely young actors to incredibly famous people, and THEY'RE DEALING WITH THINGS A LOT OF PEOPLE CAN'T IMAGINE. So, for me, it’s about seeing them as people. So I'm getting tired of the press actually, really, what Heigl said shouldn't be an issue from Chandrra, Chyler and Eric comments said it's not an issue and McSteamy said that the whole Emmy 'scandal' " took on a life of its own in the outside, but didn't really exist within the show." and from Shonda the writer herself admitted she didn't feel insulted because she knows Heigl more than any of us can't possibly. But it always the press that can't move on and keep bringing it up and make it bigger issue. As Shonda said Heigl is an outspoken girl and that we all already know that, if Shonda didn't feel insulted why must the hypocritical fans and you jounalists feels more than her? Do you know about Heigl more than Shonda and the casts of Grey's? What Heigl said was no different from what the TV critics and the lead actor/actress of the show had said about S4. Fans had been complaint about Grey's writting in Shonda's blog and Shonda should have read it and she knows and alos fans and critics comment about the suckiness of Izzie characters in S4. In the TCA tour Shonda had confirmed Heigl was given more comedic role in S4 in George/Izzie storey lines and later a lighter role, for every reasonable person would have agreed that Heigl no right to run for Emmy nomination in 'Best supporting DRAMA actress' category for S4 and she's knows it. For me it's any level headed people would do but the fact of the matter is whatever Katherine said , anything , would get press attention and become BIG in the news.
dukegirl dukegirl 9 years
I say quit doing "She Said, She Said" in the press. Sit down and talk instead. What a concept: communication between people in the communication industry.
Tassie Tassie 9 years
I don't know whether I like Katherine Heigl, but I thought from the beginning that this was just a poor choice of words, rather than a jab at the writers. She's made some mistakes, but we don't know her, or the full story. Get over it.
ilikeatea ilikeatea 9 years
This add to my dislike of Katherine...because she said "I did not feel that I was given the material this season to warrant an Emmy nomination " It is a suggesting that the “material” was crappy not that its she actually REQUESTING that it arrive that way. BOoo lying and ungrateful....can't wait for her to go back to obscurity..
TheEnchantedOne TheEnchantedOne 9 years
"In the back half of the season, Katherine asked me personally to write her light so that she could do her movie" Uh oh.
ilanac13 ilanac13 9 years
see - this just adds to my list of why i hate katherine...she asked for something - got it and still complained. oh well. whatever happens - it's not going to impact the show. i kind of wish that she would just go away anyway, and leave the rest of the cast to develop and make it a better show. katherine is the only one on the cast that's a publicity whore - remember the whole 'giving up smoking' thing? really - did she even try?
Nitachequita Nitachequita 9 years
There's writing lighter and then there is writing poor quality material. I'm with Katherine on this one. That being said, if the writers and Shonda want to get rid of her, hopefully they'll do it in a QUALITY way and not with a cop-out death scene.
CaterpillarGirl CaterpillarGirl 9 years
Oh shonda please kill Izzy ! make it a death that she cant come back from! make it creative and memorable and please have Christina do it.
divinedebris divinedebris 9 years
I'm so sick of hearing about this. Heigl sad some comments, big deal. Kill the character or not, I don't care. Blah, why do they keep talking about this?
krystalmak krystalmak 9 years
"'I love and respect her as an actress' ... but not as a person, I'm guessing?" mm good pointout. Sucks, Shonda's pretty much saying.. I gave her what she asked for, and this is how she repays me.
Linda-McP Linda-McP 9 years
Thanks for the update, Buzz. Her remarks seem quite guarded; some tension here, maybe?!
nomerz nomerz 9 years
"I love and respect her as an actress" ... but not as a person, I'm guessing? ha. me neither.
Actors Who Have Been on Grey's Anatomy and Scandal
Characters Who Left Grey's Anatomy
Grey's Anatomy Season 14 Details
Shonda Rhimes on Meryl Streep's Golden Globes Speech
From Our Partners
Latest Entertainment
All the Latest From Ryan Reynolds