Patience Pays Off For Kate Walsh

at . Comments
Justin Chambers, Kate Walsh
All Kate Walsh needed was a little bit of patience.

She had an inkling that's what it would take for her strong, flawed character on Grey's Anatomy, Dr. Addison Montgomery-Shepherd, to click with the show's audience.

Her role as the estranged spouse of Derek Shepherd (Patrick Dempsey), although initially intended to be short-term, took shape the longer she was on screen.

Initially Addison, a neo-natal surgeon, was hated by fans who saw her as standing between Meredith and McDreamy and true happiness.

But as Addison's story lines evolved, she became one of Grey's Anatomy's most beloved characters.

Not a bad effort.

"They started off writing her like the wicked witch from the east all in black coming in to clean up. And then they just gradually made her more and more human and took off the scales one by one," Kate Walsh said.

"They do this with everybody in the show. All the characters have a work persona and a personal persona. I think that's just very real, and that it is also very natural that some people would reveal theirs more than others, like the interns that are working 400 hours a week."

The public reaction to Addison has changed from anger over McDreamy to joy at seeing her in the arms of Dr. Mark "McSteamy" Sloan (Eric Dane). The character is so popular, producers gave her a spin-off series.

Walsh left at the end of Season 3 to begin Private Practice, which viewers have already had a taste of in a previous episode of Grey's Anatomy.

The series is set in L.A. and also stars Taye Diggs and Tim Daly.

"Basically, where Grey's Anatomy is sort of people who worked together that become friends, these are all friends already, and they got together and decided to form a private practice," Kate Walsh says.

The newly-engaged actress adds that viewers can expect to see more of the characters' "messy personal lives."

Also waving goodbye to Grey's Anatomy is Isaiah Washington, who played Dr. Preston Burke. Washington and Shonda Rhimes (executive producer of both Grey's and Practice) have been surrounded by controversy since his departure.

One character definitely back for season four is Justin Chambers' Alex Karev. While seeming arrogant at first, Alex's layers have slowly been peeled back to reveal a more caring side.

"He definitely has been humbled," Chambers says. "He's had a big piece of humble pie. Who knows if he'll go back to being a jerk."

Justin Chambers says he discovered, through his own research, that many surgeons are actually quite arrogant.

"Some of them do have a bit of a God complex, in large part because people's lives are in their hands," he says. "But what makes this show work is that we see these doctors in a professional mode, but then we see that they are human and they are flawed, and every character on the show has issues... and I'm sure plenty of surgeons in real life are similarly flawed."

Steve Marsi is the Managing Editor of TV Fanatic. Follow him on Google+ or email him here.


hi i enjoyed the read


hi nice post, i enjoyed it


Addison is horrid and KW can't act.


Since Addison is my favourit character of GA I'm on the one hand happy she gets her own show on the other hand I'll can't imagine her outside SGH.
And I think it's sad for GA. You don't see strong, successful females in TV shows very often. Usually the guys are in charge, just like in SGH. The classic cliché the guys are attendings or chiefs, the females are interns or maybe residents. Addison was the only attending and now she's gone. We'll see how that turns out.


I think Kate looks hot in that picture. So does Justin Chambers.


i'm not sure how i feel about Isiah going. I'm not loving Burke in season 3. With Kate, though, she is such a talent that I really wish her all the best for PP. It seems like it will be a good show esp. as the GA team are behind it. She will however be sorely missed on GA. Well, she could always come back ha!


I agree that it was time for Addison to move on. She and McSteamy were done and that little fling with Alex was a BIG mistake. There was nowhere else for the series to take her! At first I was glad that Dr. Burke was gone because I was tired of him and Cristina. But now I think I'm going to really miss him and I wish he were coming back!! Every character on Grey's Anatomy seems to fit with each other. I don't think he should have been fired. That was very unfair. He did all he could to make up for that mistake. Oh well, time will tell. It would be great if he could rejoin the cast. I love all of my Grey's characters, but I don't think I will miss Addison. I hope her new series is a success though!


Addison did her business at SGH and now it's best that she moves on, we will just have to see what happens next. I believe that the Grey's producers will come back to Isiah Washington, there is only so much they can do without him. [But I do believe what he did to T.R. was wrong.] 43 Days until the NEW SEASON!!


i think private practice looks good... anything that comes out of the greys anatomy producuers is bound to be a good show so we'll see....
cant wat for season 4 to start!! =]


She should have stayed, I didn't like epi 22 & 23 :(


Grey's Anatomy Quotes

Did you say it? 'I love you. I don't ever want to live without you. You changed my life.' Did you say it? Make a plan. Set a goal. Work toward it, but every now and then, look around; Drink it in 'cause this is it. It might all be gone tomorrow."

Meredith (closing voiceover)

Burke was- He took something from me. He took little pieces of me, little pieces over time, so small I didn't even notice, you know? He wanted me to be something I wasn't, and I made myself into what he wanted. One day I was me Cristina Yang, and then suddenly I was lying for him, and jeopardizing my career, and agreeing to be married and wearing a ring, and being a bride. Until I was standing there in a wedding dress with no eyebrows, and I wasn't Cristina Yang anymore. And even then, I would've married him. I would have. I lost myself for a long time. And now that I'm finally me again, I can't. I love you. I love you more than I loved Burke. I love you. And that scares the crap out of me because when you asked me to ignore Teddy's page, you took a piece of me, and I let you. And that will never happen again.