‘Grey’s Anatomy’ has just been renewed for an 18th season. Eight years after leaving ‘Grey’s Anatomy,’ Sandra Oh is weighing in on whether she’d come back to play Dr. Cristina Yang.
Grey’s Anatomy is getting another season, but don’t expect Sandra Oh to return as Dr. Cristina Yang. “No,” Sandra told the Los Angeles Times when asked if she’d be returning to the long-running ABC medical drama. “I love it, though, and this is also why I really appreciate the show … that I still get asked this.”
Sandra played the beloved Cristina on Grey’s Anatomy for the first 10 seasons of the show. She exited the series in the season 10 finale. Cristina is still a part of the Grey’s Anatomy universe. The character is currently working in Switzerland.
Grey’s Anatomy remains one of ABC’s most popular series. Even though there’s still so much love for Cristina Yang, Sandra has “moved on” from the role. “It’s very rare, I would say, to be able to see in such a way the impact of a character,” Sandra said. “In some ways, you do your work as a bubble and you let it go. I left that show, my God, seven years ago almost. So in my mind, it’s gone. But for a lot of people, it’s still very much alive. And while I understand and I love it, I have moved on.”
Renewed speculation about Cristina’s possible return was fueled when Grey’s Anatomy brought back scores of fan favorites during season 17, including Patrick Dempsey, T.R. Knight, Eric Dane, and Chyler Leigh. Their characters, Derek, George, Mark, and Lexie, appeared in Meredith’s beach dreams as she battled COVID-19. Cristina was texting Owen to get updates about Meredith’s condition, which fans thought was a hint that Cristina may pop up again before the season’s end.
The show, which is currently the longest-running medical drama in TV history, has officially been renewed for season 18. After lengthy negotiations, stars Ellen Pompeo, Chandra Wilson, and James Pickens Jr. signed new deals. Ellen reportedly “secured another salary increase” in her latest contract, according to The Hollywood Reporter. She became the highest-earning actress on television in 2017 when she signed a new deal to make $20 million a year. Now she’s surpassed that. James and Chandra also reportedly “received sizable pay bumps” for season 18. Grey’s Anatomy is currently in its 17th season and airs Thursdays on ABC.