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Patrick Dempsey's behavior caused 'PTSD' among Grey's Anatomy cast! Here's the 411

Author Lynette Rice's new book has revealed scathing information about Dempsey where cast and crew said he 'terrorized the set' and caused 'HR issues'
UPDATED SEP 17, 2021
Patrick Dempsey's behavior caused PTSD among 'Grey's Anatomy' cast (Photo by Frederick M. Brown/Getty Images)
Patrick Dempsey's behavior caused PTSD among 'Grey's Anatomy' cast (Photo by Frederick M. Brown/Getty Images)

Patrick Dempsey's character's death in a 2015 episode of 'Grey's Anatomy' continues to remain one of the most heartbreaking moments for fans of the medical drama. However, there's a shocking story behind it which includes allegations levied on Dempsey for untoward behavior which fueled the decision to oust him from the highly successful show. Dempsey played Dr Derek Shepherd on 'Grey's' for the first 11 seasons, where he was also known as 'McDreamy' on the show as well as among audiences. 

In her upcoming book titled 'How to Save a Life: The Inside Story of Grey's Anatomy' author Lynette Rice states the alleged reason behind Shepherd being killed off on the show stemmed from Dempsey's reckless behavior. Rice interviewed more than 80 members from the cast and crew of the show, both past and present. "There were HR issues. It wasn't sexual in any way," former Executive Producer James D. Parriott revealed, according to report by The Hollywood Reporter. 


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Patrick Dempsey is accused of 'terrorizing the set' 

Parriott had produced the first two seasons of 'Grey's' before exiting and returned only in Season 11 to supervise Shepherd's death on the show. "He was sort of terrorizing the set," Parriott recalled. "Some cast members had all sorts of PTSD with him," he added. Dempsey has been associated with adjectives including "so gracious and lovely", "charismatic" and "personable". Brooke Smith who played Erica Hahn credited him for standing by her when she was fired from the show. In season 11, the show began revolving around him and things started to go downhill from this point onward. 

Parriott said Dempsey and Shonda Rhimes were finding it difficult to see eye to eye. On top of that Dempsey seemingly was done with the show and wasn't too inclined on continuing coming to set to shoot. "He had this hold on the set where he knew he could stop production and scare people. The network and studio came down and we had sessions with them. I think he was just done with the show. He didn’t like the inconvenience of coming in every day and working. He and Shonda were at each other’s throats," Parriott explained. 

Shonda Rhimes said 'If he doesn't go, I go'

According to another EP Jeannine Renshaw said Ellen Pompeo and Patrick Dempsey had tension too. The former would get tired of Dempsey's complaints about how long he had been on set. He would calm down only after being reminded others had been at work longer. Dempsey was interviewed for the book and he said he was frustrated with long shoot hours which kept him from his family. The final nail in the coffin was Rhimes witnessing the poor behavior herself. 

"Shonda had to say to the network, ‘If he doesn’t go, I go,’ she said. Nobody wanted him to leave because he was the show. Him and Ellen. Patrick is a sweetheart. It messes you up, this business." Three possible storylines were created to accommodate his absence and the makers ultimately decided to kill his character off. "It was ultimately decided that just bringing him back was going to be too hard on the other actors. The studio just said it was going to be more trouble than it was worth and decided to move on," Parriott said