Entertainment TV Shonda Rhimes Says She Rewrote the Ending of 'Grey's Anatomy' 'a Good Eight Times' Shonda Rhimes created Grey's Anatomy for ABC in 2005 By Dory Jackson Dory Jackson Instagram Twitter Website Dory Jackson is an Associate Editor for PEOPLE's digital TV team. While at the brand, she's had the opportunity to interview a long list of celebrities, from Kate Hudson to Pierce Brosnan to Billy Porter. She also recaps popular TV shows like The Real Housewives of Beverly Hills and Vanderpump Rules.The New York-based Maryland native graduated from Randolph-Macon College in May 2016 with a focus in Communication Studies and Journalism. She came to PEOPLE in March 2021 after working at a number of major news companies, including Newsweek and Us Weekly. She also previously co-hosted a podcast called "Idol Nation." People Editorial Guidelines Published on November 8, 2021 12:33 PM Share Tweet Pin Email Grey's Anatomy creator Shonda Rhimes has put a lot of thought into how the drama should eventually end. In an interview for Variety's Show Woman of the Year issue, Rhimes said she had been crafting multiple endings for the hit starring Ellen Pompeo. "I've written the end of that series, I want to say, a good eight times," said Rhimes, 51. "I was like, 'And that will be the end!' Or, 'That'll be the final thing that's ever said or done!' And all of those things have already happened. So I give up on that, you know what I mean?" Rhimes brought Grey's Anatomy to ABC in 2005, but she hasn't served as its showrunner since Krista Vernoff took the reigns in 2017. At the time of her exit, she entered into a massive deal with Netflix. Because of that, Rhimes may not "be the person who decides, like, what the final scene is," she said. Kevin Winter/Getty Ellen Pompeo Jokes ABC 'Owns' Her and Talks Grey's Anatomy Fan Theories "If you'd ask me this question three years ago, or prior to Krista arriving, I would have said, 'Yes, I can tell you exactly how it's going to end,' " Rhimes said. "But once you hand off the ball for real, it's just different. So I don't know yet." Rhimes will choose when the popular medical drama concludes, however. "Am I the person who decides when the show is over? Yes," she added. "And I take full responsibility for that when or if everybody gets mad at me." Vernoff, 49, has shared similar sentiments on when Grey's Anatomy will wrap, saying she has "something percolating" but isn't quite sure of the ultimate direction. FRANK OCKENFELS/ABC "The percolating changes," she recently said on the At Home with the Creative Coalition podcast. "I had some ideas percolating during the first seven seasons — I used to pitch things to Shonda and she'd go, 'That's a season eight idea.'" Ideas on "where the characters are going to end changes each year," said Vernoff. "Every year, I never know if I'm writing the last season of the show, literally. I percolate new ideas every year," she added. "If we ended it this year, what would it be?" Never miss a story — sign up for PEOPLE's free daily newsletter to stay up-to-date on the best of what PEOPLE has to offer, from juicy celebrity news to compelling human interest stories. Pompeo, 51, told Entertainment Tonight in September that there would be a reason to continue the show past season 18 "creatively, as long as there's something to do." "Miraculously, we keep coming up with ways to have a reason to stay," she continued. "And if there's a reason, that warrants it." Grey's Anatomy airs Thursdays (9 p.m. ET) on ABC.