‘Grey’s Anatomy’ Showrunner: Explanation Behind Abrupt Exit Of Justin Chambers’ Character Will Take ‘Quite A Few More Episodes’

Following Justin Chambers’ announcement that he’s exiting “Grey’s Anatomy” after 16 seasons, Dr. Alex Karev left Seattle and his job at Grey Sloan Memorial in an episode that aired last month.

Fans of the show, however, weren’t exactly thrilled with the explanation for Alex’s abrupt departure, that he returned to Iowa to take of his ailing mother.

However, “Grey’s” showrunner Krista Vernoff revealed in a recent interview with TVLine that more will be revealed to explain Karev’s sudden disappearance, explaining it’s “a very careful threading of a needle,” adding, “episode by episode, illuminating the story of where Alex is. And it takes us quite a few more episodes to get there and to give the audience clarity.”

RELATED: ‘Grey’s Anatomy’: Here’s How Justin Chambers’ Exit Was Addressed

Vernoff also promised that the show will explain why Alex has stopped returning the calls of wife Jo (Camilla Luddington).

“Jo went through so much pain and so much grief just last season that I wanted to be careful,” Vernoff continued.

“And so it’s a bit of a mystery [what’s going on with Alex], so that we don’t watch Jo in the same place that we watched her last season,” she added.
“We did it as carefully as we could. But it takes a while to get there.”

Chambers’ final appearance came in the 350th episode, following his earlier announcement he was leaving.

RELATED: Justin Chambers Says ‘Goodbye’ To ‘Grey’s Anatomy’ After 16 Seasons, Ellen Pompeo Responds

“There’s no good time to say goodbye to a show and character that’s defined so much of my life for the past 15 years. For some time now, however, I have hoped to diversify my acting roles and career choices. And, as I turn 50 and am blessed with my remarkable, supportive wife and five wonderful children, now is that time,” he said in a statement. “As I move on from ‘Grey’s Anatomy’, I want to thank the ABC family, Shonda Rhimes, original cast members Ellen Pompeo, Chandra Wilson and James Pickens [Jr.], and the rest of the amazing cast and crew, both past and present, and, of course, the fans for an extraordinary ride.”

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This Week On TV: Feb. 17-23

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