Grey’s Anatomy has given us so much, but as is expected for a show that’s been on the air for 13 years, it has also taken things — like beloved characters — away. This week, the ABC drama announced one of its biggest cast shakeups in a while when it was revealed that Jessica Capshaw and Sarah Drew would not return next season. Both Dr. Robbins and Dr. Kepner have now broken their silence on the news, and unsurprisingly, they have some pretty major feelings about it.
“For the past ten years I have had the rare privilege of not only playing Arizona Robbins, but also being madly in love with playing her,” Capshaw shared on Twitter, pointing out some of traits she loved most about the character, such as her kindness, intelligence, and humor.
“She was one of the first members of the LGBTQ community to be represented in a series regular role on network television. Her impact on the world is permanent and forever,” Capshaw continued. “I am grateful that I have gotten to bring her to life, and for the life that she has brought me. I am sad to see her go, but I am consoled by the idea that she will continue to live on in all of our consciences and imaginations.”
Drew revealed that she had only known the news for 48 hours and was still struggling to fully process it. “Thank you for all of the love,” she wrote. “I know you’re sad. I’m sad too…I’m not ready to say my thank you’s and give an all encompassing statement about my nine years here. That will come later,” she promised with a smiley face.
“For now, I’d like to say: I love you,” she continued. “And I love April, and her story isn’t over yet. And the really good news (for me, at least) is that I’m here on set shadowing one of my favorite people, Kevin McKidd, with my beloved Grey’s family all this week and next, so I get to process all of my feelings surrounded by the community that has nourished and nurtured me for almost a decade. For that, I am so grateful.”
Unlike some of the show’s other big cast changes in the past, like the departure of Sandra Oh’s Cristina Yang, Capshaw’s and Drew’s departures were a creative decision made by the producers, and not by the actresses themselves. Both Shonda Rhimes and showrunner Krista Vernoff have expressed their love for the stars, and the feeling, it would seem, is mutual.
“Shonda, thank you for the ride on this incredible rollercoaster,” Capshaw tweeted, before signing off with “a heart full of love.”
Will you miss Dr. Robbins and Dr. Kepner on Grey’s Anatomy? Let us know @BritandCo.
(Photos via ABC/Bob D’Amico)