Shonda Rhimes Teases Forest Flashback, Love Interest for Alex

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Note to Grey's Anatomy viewers who are upset over the impending departure of Eric Dane:

Shonda Rhimes has some good news, and it has to do with a couple of major piece of male eye candy.

“The loss of ‘McSteamy’ is going to leave a giant hole in our world in terms of - for lack of a better phrase - man whore-ness," the creator tells EW in a new interview, explaining her solution:

"I’ve told the actors who play Alex and Jackson [Chambers and Williams] that we need some leading men here. We need to add to that pool, and they’re going to step up."

Pink Scrubs in the House

In what regard?

Look for a new love interest to be cast for Alex and for the series to really explore the "funny and sexy" dynamics of Jackson and April, Rhimes said.

She also previewed the unusual structure of the first couple Season 9 episodes, saying she wanted to tackle this tragedy in a different way than the hospital shooting from a few seasons ago.

"When we start the season, we are ahead enough in time where we see the outcome of lots of things. And in the second episode of the season, there’s rewind - we go backwards - to where they’re still in the forest. So you see what happened and in the next episode, you see how we get there. That was a really great experiment for us, and we think it turned out really really well."

Grey's Anatomy Season 9 premieres on September 27.

Matt Richenthal is the Editor in Chief of TV Fanatic. Follow him on Twitter and on Google+.

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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."

Lexie: [narrating] Grief may be a thing we all have in common, but it looks different on everyone.
Mark: It isn't just death we have to grieve. It's life. It's loss. It's change.
Alex: And when we wonder why it has to suck so much sometimes, has to hurt so bad. The thing we gotta try to remember is that it can turn on a dime.
Izzie: That's how you stay alive. When it hurts so much you can't breathe, that's how you survive.
Derek: By remembering that one day, somehow, impossibly, you won't feel this way. It won't hurt this much.
Bailey: Grief comes in its own time for everyone, in its own way.
Owen: So the best we can do, the best anyone can do, is try for honesty.
Meredith: The really crappy thing, the very worst part of grief is that you can't control it.
Arizona: The best we can do is try to let ourselves feel it when it comes.
Callie: And let it go when we can.
Meredith: The very worst part is that the minute you think you're past it, it starts all over again.
Cristina: And always, every time, it takes your breath away.
Meredith: There are five stages of grief. They look different on all of us, but there are always five.
Alex: Denial.
Derek: Anger.
Bailey: Bargaining.
Lexie: Depression.
Richard: Acceptance.