How Shonda Rhimes Feels About Some Fans Wanting Grey's Anatomy To Fire An Actor

grey's anatomy avery

Recently, a bunch of Grey's Anatomy fans apparently all forgot just who was at the head of the long-lasting ABC drama, as evidenced by an Internet-circling petition calling for the firing of show star Jesse Williams over a speech he made at the BET Awards last month. Everyone else in the world who still remembers what Rhimes is like, though, shouldn't be surprised by how the TV stalwart responded to the attempts to get Williams ousted. Check out the blunt and unsweetened response below.

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With a personality as big and boisterous as everyone in Grey-Sloan Memorial put together, Shonda Rhimes is the kind of person that doesn't seem like she would read the instructions on a frozen pizza, because why would the company know how she likes her pizza? (I also doubt her freezer is ever stocked with frozen pizza in the first place.) So it's not surprising at all that Rhimes took to Twitter with a brilliantly brief comeback for everyone trying to dictate her behavior, especially when they all should have known where she'd stand on the matter anyway. Some might have thought ABC would go behind Rhimes' back to fire Williams, but that's an equally unlikely outcome.

For those who might have missed out on the inciting incident, Jesse Williams (who plays Grey's doc Jackson Avery) won the Humanitarian Award at the BET Awards for his social and human rights activism over the years, and his acceptance speech was largely focused on how black people are still being oppressed, by both the system and the law enforcement protecting that system. His powerful words were immediately celebrated during the ceremony through a standing ovation, and social media also lit up with those praising Williams for his speech. Videos of it have been watched by many, many more than the 5,000+ people who have signed the petition started up by Erin Smith, and those folks were likely responsible for the small but outspoken backlash to his comments, which were thought to be racist and anti-authority in nature.

Going into Season 13, Grey's Anatomy is a show that knows a little something about losing characters. Patrick Dempsey's exit as Derek Shepherd was the biggest thing to happen on the show in years, and fans will go into next year without Callie Torres, as actress Sara Ramirez announced she was leaving the show a couple of months ago. Contract extensions have been the talk of this offseason, so perhaps we'll have even fewer doctors and nurses showing up for work when Grey's Anatomy returns to ABC on Thursday, September 22, but I'd bet my solid gold stethoscope that we'll see Jesse Williams walking the hospital halls in a few months. To see what else is premiering this fall, check out our full TV schedule.

Nick Venable
Assistant Managing Editor

Nick is a Cajun Country native, and is often asked why he doesn't sound like that's the case. His love for his wife and daughters is almost equaled by his love of gasp-for-breath laughter and gasp-for-breath horror. A lifetime spent in the vicinity of a television screen led to his current dream job, as well as his knowledge of too many TV themes and ad jingles.