Ellen Pompeo Calls Katherine Heigl A “Hero” For Roasting The Long Working Hours On “Grey’s Anatomy” In 2009

April 21, 2022 / Posted by:

Ellen Pompeo and Katherine Heigl were on Grey’s Anatomy together from the jump in 2005. B while Katherine and Ellen were both on the show from Day One, Ellen is the only one standing today as Katherine left the show after the 2009-2010 season over some drama. It started in 2007 with Katherine withdrawing from Emmys consideration and dragging the show saying she wasn’t given the “material” deserving of a nomination. And in 2009, Katherine was on Late Night with David Letterman and called out the show for making her work 17-hour days. Some called Katherine “ungrateful” for that. Well, 13 years later, Ellen Pompeo has come to Katherine’s defense. “Better late than never, I guess,” said Katherine, somewhere.

Insider says that on this week’s episode of the Tell Me With Ellen Pompeo podcast, Ellen had on fellow Grey’s cast member Kate Walsh, who left the show after season 8 but is back on this season. Ellen brought up the time in 2009 when Katherine vowed to keep embarrassing Shonda Rhimes and the powers-that-be for the crazy work hours. At the time, Katherine said:

“I’m gonna keep saying this ’cause I hope it embarrasses them,” Heigl told Letterman at the time. She proceeded to say she just worked a “17-hour day,” which she described as “cruel and mean.”

Here’s the clip:

Katherine stands by those words, and last year posted about how she felt justified after the entertainment union, IATSE, tried negotiating better work environments for actors. And Ellen agrees, she thinks Katherine should be vindicated!

“I remember Heigl said something on a talk show about the insane hours we were working and she was 100% right,” Pompeo told Wash. “And had she said that today, she’d be a complete hero. But she’s ahead of her time, made a statement about our crazy hours and of course, let’s slam a woman and call her ungrateful.”

On her podcast, Pompeo said Heigl was being “100% honest” and was “absolutely correct” about the hours they were working at the time.

“And she was fucking ballsy for saying it,” Pompeo continued. “And she was telling the truth. She wasn’t lying.”

…She told Walsh that she’s thankful that she’s been able to cut back on her filming hours over the years.The Betr Remedies cofounder offered insight into why actors agree to consistently work such long hours in the first place. “Also, when you’re younger, you’re so excited to be there and you’re so happy to be invited to the party that you’re willing to do whatever it is they’re asking you to do,” Pompeo said.

She said she thinks that younger generations of actors are getting better at setting boundaries for themselves.

Ellen has BEEN trying to get Grey’s to end, but it will not end and she stays for the check (she reportedly makes $575,000 an episode but makes more for being a producer and in backend sales). The show was just renewed for its 19th season so this must be her last-ditch effort. And we know that Shonda is no fan of Katherine’s, so Ellen calling Katherine a “hero” may do it! And if not, expect to hear that Ellen has withdrawn herself from Emmys consideration, because, well, you know the rest.

Pics: Faye’s Vision/Cover Images/PBG/PA Images/INSTARimages

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