After the lengthy-operating ABC medical drama kicked off season 17 final month with Patrick Dempsey‘s beautiful return as Derek “McDreamy” Shepherd, it wasn’t executed with the surprises. On the Thursday, Dec. three episode, T.R. Knight was again as Meredith’s close pal George O’Malley, who died within the season 5 finale that ran in 2009.
In a Deadline interview that revealed after this week’s episode aired, Knight joined showrunner and government producer Krista Vernoff to clarify how the episode got here to be.
As it seems, George was the primary character that Vernoff considered to go to Meredith in dream sequences as she battles COVID-19. The producer defined that the idea got here to her as she herself was strolling on the seashore, and she or he might image “Meredith walking with her feet in the water with George.”
She continued, “That was the first image that came to me, and the joy that filled me up when it came, I believe, is translated on screen, and I believe we have given many millions of fans that moment of pure joy. Right now in our lives, in this pandemic, pure joy is rare, and so I’m so grateful to T.R. for coming and playing, and offering that to everyone, because I think it’s meaningful.”
Vernoff then offered the concept to Pompeo, who was instantly excited and instructed that the present convey again Dempsey as nicely.
“Ellen and T.R. are close, and George and T.R. were both always favorites of mine, and so he was my first idea of, as a fan, who do I want to see again?” Vernoff defined. “I wanted to see George, so that’s where it started.”
For his half, Knight mentioned he was “still trying to put into words how profound the experience was for me,” and that he missed not solely his character but in addition the folks he used to work with on the present.