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Katherine Heigl Responds: Does She Regret Leaving Grey's? Is She Difficult?

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Katherine Heigl was put squarely on the spot today during the State of Affair panel discussion at the Television Critics Association Summer Press Tour.

First, the actress was asked if she regretted leaving her role as Izzie Stevens on Grey's Anatomy?

"I made a difficult decision, but it was the right decision for me at the time," Heigl said of her Season 6 departure, adding:

"I really just wanted to spend more time with my family and my new baby and extend my family and I'm really grateful to have been able to do that and I'm very grateful for these last couple of years."

State of Affairs Photo

Heigl has made some controversial statements over the years, such as blaming the writers on Grey's Anatomy for not submitting herself for an Emmy in 2008.

Does she consider herself "difficult" to work with?

"I certainly don't see myself [that way]," she said. "I would never intend to be difficult... It's important for everybody to conduct themselves professionally and respectfully and kindly. So if I have ever disappointed somebody, it was never intentional."

Following a string of relative box office bombs, why has Heigl returned for State of Affairs, which premieres on NBC in September?

"It's an extraordinary role, it's an extraordinary opportunity and it's an extraordinary story and it's an opportunity for me to flex some different muscles and show a different side of myself as an actor, performer and storyteller that I hope audiences will be excited about and love."

Here is your first look at State of Affairs, along with an interview we conduced with the cast in May:

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

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
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