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Ellen Pompeo Reflects on Meredith, Grey's Anatomy

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The wait is almost over for Meredith and Derek fans, as they will finally reunite (for good!) in the May 22 season finale of Grey's Anatomy.

In preparation for the big day, Entertainment Weekly talked to Ellen Pompeo about the reconciliation, the show's future, and how she lays low when she's done working for the day on Grey's Anatomy.

EW: How did [Grey's Anatomy creator] Shonda Rhimes tell you that Meredith and Derek were getting back together?
Ellen Pompeo: I came in a couple weeks before we were going to go back to work and she invited me in to talk. She pretty much started off by saying she had time over the break to watch the entire series, saw where it started and where it went and where it needs to go now. It helped her get some perspective.

EW: Did she say she made some mistakes?
Ellen Pompeo: This is Hollywood. People don't admit mistakes.

Wonderful and Sweet

Grey's Anatomy star Ellen Pompeo shines on- and off-screen.

EW: How did you feel about the Mer-Der reunion?
Ellen Pompeo: I told her to please make it be in a way that makes sense. Don't put us together because the fans want it: so â€" poof! â€" we're together. Please make it make sense. I would have preferred that we really stayed apart for a while and then slowly got back together. I just worry how realistic is it after all of the mess.

EW: How had you been feeling about the relationship?
Ellen Pompeo: You can't really judge characters, because that's when it gets really hard to play them. But sometimes Meredith has made choices and I'm like, Why would she do this? Why would she continue to keep going back to him after that? You gotta try to find a way to do it, but it's not always easy. I would never let a man treat me that way.

EW: When did you start to feel that Mer-Der was becoming repetitive?
Ellen Pompeo: Last season. Season 3 is when the show really started to get a little unfocused with crazy things like Meredith's [failed] suicide, and then George and Izzie. It just sort of seemed like it was all over the place, which it kind of was. I know Shonda was writing Private Practice and her attention was diverted.

EW: How did you feel about George and Izzie?
Ellen Pompeo: I love Katie [Katherine Heigl] and T.R. [Knight] so much that I didn't really like seeing them together. That's like my brother and my sister kissing. I don't want to see my brother and sister kiss! I think it was a little ratings stunt.

EW: What would Shonda say when you've complained about Mer-Der in the past?
Ellen Pompeo: She always has answers. Meredith can't commit because there are issues with her mother. But if I couldn't commit, why didn't I just walk away? It did get redundant. But nobody wants to hear me complain.

EW: Fans can't seem to make up their mind whether they want to love or hate Meredith Grey.
Ellen Pompeo: Not everyone's going to like you. I don't like everybody who I see on TV. You can't set out to try to have the whole world love you. That's like some weird ego thing. It's silliness. At the end of the day I still have an amazing job.

EW: Do you think this show has eight or nine seasons in it?
Ellen Pompeo: I don't know how you can come up with original material for that long, I really don't. To keep the same audience for eight years...I don't know how likely that is.

EW: Could you see yourself going to the bitter end?
Ellen Pompeo: No. I'm signed on for seven seasons, we all are. And I'll never say never about anything. But, I think after seven seasons I'm certainly going to feel like I have nothing to give for this character.

EW: Do you try hard to stay out of the press? Except for the occasional Lakers game, there aren't a lot of paparazzi shots of you walking down Robertson Boulevard in Beverly Hills, doing some shopping.
Ellen Pompeo: My wedding was a little bit tricky to pull off. But New York City Hall totally helped us out. It's not hard to stay out of press if you don't want it. There are very specific things you can do. I wear the same black tracksuit to work pretty much every day. That's a little tip I stole from Madonna. If you don't dress up every day when you leave your house, the paparazzi won't come. If they know you're going to step out with a beautiful bag, beautiful dress, beautiful shoes, they're going to show up like clockwork every day. That's what the magazines buy. The second reason [I stay out of gossip press] is I think the more people know about your personal life, the less they believe you as a character. I just want people to believe the character I play and believe me in the role. That's really all I care about.

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

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i think she is the most amaing actress on the planet. i love everything about her. and although im kinda sad that she woldnt have anything to give after 7 seasons, but you never know, :) i would deff stay on Grey's for the rest of my life! aha, but yeah shes amazing!

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WE LOVE ELLEN :D
AND KATHERINEEE :D P.S.
Lisa you are very wrong!

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I hope Greys not going to do seven season. I love the show but seven seasons? Its a littel to much. 5 seasons is great and 6 is ok but 7?
I think the show will lose audience if the show is to long. And if someone in the show decided to quit and a character suddenly "dies" or "run" or whatever the show is going to lose a lot of the audience. I love the show but I will see a end, a good end. Then I and other people will pay the CDs for the seasons. I love the show and Mer and Derek!!!! :D Lookning forward to season 5!

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Okayy to stop becoming an Ellen Fan is pretty bleh I think. How can you stop being her fan because of what she said of George and Izziie. Everyone has their own opinions on them and that's hers. So they was I see it you were actually never a true Ellen fan. But anyways omg I love Ellen she's soo wonderful!

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This show is what keeps me watching television! absolutely addicted to it. every grey's fan is a friend of mine! cant wait for Der and Mer to be together properly, then we'll see what other stories will keep us glued... Great interview Ellen. Love you to bits :-)

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Love her! And love Meredith - although I agree that sometimes 'less' is 'more', it would be a shame for Grey's to continue to an 8th or 9th season if all the ideas had been done already...quality over quantity! She's so smart and sincere...

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Love Ellen!!!!!!!!!!

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I love ellen!
Sounds like shes kind of attacking the show at some points,but thats just me. seven seasons of greys?! im down with it! so its gonna probably end in 2011? whoaaaa ill probably be a wreck with the shows done. and about the gizzie shes so right,they were weird together NO OFFENSE GIZZIE LOVERS! but it was just weird

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I am easily the world's biggest Gizzie fan, but she has a right to her opinion. Does not change anything. I disagree with her completely and think Gizzie belongs together, but she has a right to her opinion

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I love that she cares more about her role as a character in Grey's than herself as a movie star. She's very articule and seems so down to earth. All of the fame from the show could've easily gone to her head!

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)

There's a reason I said I'd be happy alone. It wasn't 'cause I thought I'd be happy alone. It was because I thought if I loved someone and then it fell apart, I might not make it. It's easier to be alone, because what if you learn that you need love and you don't have it? What if you like it and lean on it? What if you shape your life around it and then it falls apart? Can you even survive that kind of pain? Losing love is like organ damage. It's like dying. The only difference is death ends. This? It could go on forever.

Meredith