Grey's Anatomy Funeral Scene Raises Questions, Emotions

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As the rare, outdoor behind-the-scenes photos from the set proved without a doubt this week, the cast of Grey's Anatomy is giving George O'Malley his official sayonara.

We knew it was coming, but some are having a hard time coming to grips with the prospect of no more O'Malley. He was not just an original character, but a fan favorite.

Spotted on the set were Katherine Heigl, who plays Izzie Stevens, George's best friend, and a very pregnant Ellen Pompeo, who plays the title character, Meredith Grey.

A few of the men were also back to work: Justin Chambers, who plays Alex Karev, and Patrick Dempsey, who plays Derek Shepherd. Others may have been there, too.

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The demise of George O'Malley was not scripted this way initially.

It turns out that Grey's Anatomy creator and executive producer Shonda Rhimes originally had a different opening sequence planned for the 6th season of Grey's Anatomy.

A flashback was supposed to take viewers to the hours when George was missing, from when he left the hospital to when he returned later on as a disfigured John Doe.

However, Knight reportedly declined to make a brief cameo and instead of seeing George's split-second decision to save the passerby's life that cost him his own, viewers will just have to watch Shonda Rhimes' alternative idea, the funeral scene.

Which brings us to the characters and George's coffin.

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

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Grey's Anatomy Quotes

MEREDITH: "You don't get to call me a whore. When I met you, I thought I had found the person that I was going to spend the rest of my life with. I was done! All the boys and all the bars and all the obvious daddy issues, who cares? I was done. You left me. You chose Addison. I'm all glued back together now. I make no apologies for how I chose to repair what you broke. You don't get to call me a whore."
DEREK: "This thing with us is finished. It's over."
MEREDITH: "Finally."
DEREK: "Yeah, it's done."
MEREDITH: "It is done."

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)