Grey’s Anatomy has set a premiere date.
ABC’s medical drama will kick off its delayed 17th season on Thursday, Nov. 12 with a two-hour premiere at 9 p.m. ET/PT, following the season 4 premiere of its Station 19 firefighter spinoff at 8 p.m. ET/PT, the network announced Thursday. Grey’s and Station 19 will begin their respective seasons with a crossover event.
“Our fall schedule is now complete with a dynamic lineup of new and returning drama series,” said Karey Burke, President of ABC Entertainment. “From fan-favorite shows like Grey’s Anatomy and The Good Doctor to David E. Kelley’s thrilling new drama Big Sky, our strength is in our storytelling, and we could not be more energized to bring these compelling series to our viewers.”
On Sept. 8, Grey’s star Ellen Pompeo shared the first photo from set with newly promoted series regular Richard Flood as filming kicked off on season 17 in Los Angeles. Pompeo dedicated the upcoming season to the healthcare workers.
“First time back in my scrubs…,” the 50-year-old actress captioned the on-set pic. “Since we shut down filming 7000 healthcare workers have died from Covid. I dedicate my season 17 to all who have fallen and to everyone of you who by the grace of God is still standing… This season is for you with humility and a bit of humor to get us through and endless amounts of gratitude. I hope we do you proud.”
Last month, Giacomo Gianniotti revealed to ET that season 17 — which will incorporate the coronavirus into the show — would pick up with a bit of a time jump, as the action begins with Grey Sloan and its doctors about “a month and a half” into the pandemic. He revealed that production was being eyed for a September start after being pushed from a late August date.
“We’re going to start the season about a month and a half [into] full COVID, so it’s going to take place a little beyond where we left off in the last season,” Gianniotti said. “We might have some flashbacks. We might have some things where we’re referencing last season, just to have context leading up. But we are going to have a little leap when we start this season in terms of time. We’re not picking up right where we left off.”
Gianniotti also offered a preview of what the new reality will look like for the cast and crew of Grey’s on set in a COVID-19 world.
“Our producers are all rapidly trying to implement all of these protocols to keep everybody safe. We’re obviously going to be tested multiple times a week and sort of separated in zones. We’re going to have a lot less personnel on set. We’re going to be wearing full PPE [personal protective equipment] of course,” Gianniotti said. “It’s a new world.”
“There’s a learning curve for any show. We’re uniquely lucky that we get to wear PPE because we play doctors, so for other shows that aren’t in the doctor world, I really feel for them because that’s an added challenge that they have to face,” he added. “But I’m really hoping that we can figure it out and keep producing this amazing show that so many fans love to watch.”
Station 19 will have a lot of answers to contend with when season 4 returns. The finale revealed that Andy’s presumed-dead mother, Elena, is in fact alive.
“It was sort of the first big pitch that came out of the new writers’ room,” showrunner Krista Vernoff told ET in May. “We felt like there was complexity in Andy’s relationship with her father and some mystery surrounding the mother’s death woven into the fabric of the series. The way that Andy remembered her mom pulling her out of school and having this beautiful day, it just evolved. It felt true when we came to it in the writers’ room.”
Below is ABC’s updated fall drama schedule.
MONDAY, NOV. 2
10:00-11:00 p.m. The Good Doctor
THURSDAY, NOV. 12
8:00-9:00 p.m. Station 19
9:00-11:00 p.m. Grey’s Anatomy (two-hour season premiere)
TUESDAY, NOV. 17
10:00-11:00 p.m. Big Sky (series premiere)
WEDNESDAY, NOV. 18
10:00-11:00 p.m. For Life
THURSDAY, NOV. 19
10:00-11:00 p.m. A Million Little Things
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