Will 'Grey's Anatomy' end early?

Here's How The Coronavirus Is Affecting 'Grey's Anatomy' Season 16

Originally Published: 
Gilles Mingasson/Walt Disney Television/Getty Images

Editor’s Note: This article was updated to reflect new information about Grey's Anatomy ending Season 16 early.

Grey's Anatomy has a habit of keeping fans on the edge of their seats week after week with its juicy storylines. However, the recent coronavirus pandemic will keep those cliffhangers from being wrapped up anytime soon. The show halted production earlier in March as a precautionary measure to slow the spread of the novel coronavirus, and since then, it's been announced Grey's Anatomy Season 16 will end early.

The Grey's Anatomy production shutdown was announced in a note to the cast and crew on March 12, following Los Angeles' mayor Eric Garcetti's order to limit public gathering to less than 50 people. The letter was authored by the show's executive producer and showrunner Krista Vernoff and her fellow executive producers Debbie Allen and James Williams, and read in part:

Out of an abundance of caution, production is postponed on Grey’s Anatomy effective immediately. We are going home now for at least two weeks and waiting to see how the coronavirus situation evolves. This decision was made to ensure the health and safety of the whole cast and crew and the safety of our loved ones outside of work, and it was made in accordance with Mayor Garcetti’s suggestion that we not gather in groups of more than 50.

The show had just finished filming Episode 21 of Season 16 when the shutdown was announced, and that episode is scheduled to air on April 9. The season was set to air 25 episodes in total, meaning four episodes that were supposed to be in the season were not filmed.

ABC/Jessica Brooks

As the letter explains, the shutdown was initially planned for two weeks, but as the coronavirus situation continues to worsen in the United States, that plan has changed. On March 27, Grey's Anatomy showrunner Krista Vernoff posted on Twitter about ending Season 16 early, assuring fans Episode 21 will feel somewhat like a finale, and promising to wrap up the season's cliffhangers in Season 17.

A shortened season is likely disappointing to fans who are hoping to get some storylines wrapped up before the summer, but in light of the state of the world right now, it would be hard not to understand the reason for it.

If you think you’re showing symptoms of coronavirus, which include fever, shortness of breath, and cough, call your doctor before going to get tested. If you’re anxious about the virus’s spread in your community, visit the CDC for up-to-date information and resources, or seek out mental health support. You can find all Elite Daily's coverage of coronavirus here.

This article was originally published on