Grey's Anatomy may have infamously dumped (but at least not killed) Dr. April Kepner, but it sounds like actress Sarah Drew is about to take over the country.
According to Deadline, Sarah Drew was cast as the title character in a new CBS drama pilot called The Republic of Sarah. It was described as having a Northern Exposure feel, which is already a good sign. The story follows a small town in New Hampshire that suddenly ends up on the world stage when a valuable resource is discovered in its borders. Residents feel compelled to declare themselves an independent nation, forcing the young mayor Sarah Cooper (Sarah Drew) and her cabinet of inexperienced locals on the path of running a new country.
Mayor Sarah Cooper is described as "the titular beating heart" of the potential show, and a "quintessential New Englander," which apparently means she's "sharply intelligent, fiercely loyal, and always willing to lend a hand." She's said to be hesitant to step into the spotlight at first, but her quiet strength and innate leadership begin to flourish after external forces threaten her community and her way of life.
Two other co-stars have been announced for the pilot -- Carlos Leal (Casino Royale) and Jonathan Slavin (Speechless) -- with the episode written by Jeffrey Paul King (Elementary) and directed by Marc Webb (500 Days of Summer).
Sarah Drew is clearly excited about this new TV project, as she showed on Twitter:
It could be great! As a born and bred New Englander who lived for many years in small New Hampshire towns (and currently lives in a Maine one on the NH border), I'm excited for this show -- but also nervous they may lean in to the small town rube stereotypes. But I loved Northern Exposure (at least until the end), and you could argue they did the same thing, so it wouldn't necessarily be a deal-breaker.
Before anyone gets their hopes up too high, though, we have to remember this is just a pilot casting and it has yet to be picked up. Last year, Sarah Drew also nabbed a starring role in CBS' Cagney and Lacey pilot, but the network ultimately passed on it.
Sarah Drew's April Kepner and Jessica Capshaw's Arizona Robbins were written out of Grey's Anatomy at the end of Season 14 last year. Thankfully, both characters are still alive, and April is regularly referenced by Jackson Avery (Jesse Williams), who is the father of their daughter Harriet.
It's pretty clear Sarah Drew was hurt to be cut from Grey's Anatomy, and was hesitant about the idea of returning. But time heals all wounds, so hopefully we do see April again at least once by the time the series ends, whenever that might be.
In the meantime, Sarah Drew kept busy after her Grey's Anatomy departure by starring in and executive producing the film Indivisible, and appearing in the TV film Christmas Pen Pals. And now she has the starring role in this pilot.
Meanwhile, Grey's Anatomy Season 15 is continuing without her Thursdays at 8 p.m. ET on ABC as one of the many shows now airing in midseason 2019.