Paging Dr. Alex Karev! Justin Chambers has Grey’s Anatomy fans speculating about his possible return to the ABC drama after his 2020 exit.
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“A fresh cup of Greys,” the actor, 52, captioned a photo of a coffee cup with a promotional Grey’s Anatomy sleeve via Instagram on Tuesday, January 31. The heat shield featured a photo of Chandra Wilson as Miranda Bailey, Ellen Pompeo as Meredith and James Pickens Jr. as Richard Webber.
Fans filled the comments section with hopeful speculation. “i hope all these hints means an alex comeback,” a fan wrote while another added, “COME BACK WE NEED THE JOLEX ENDGAME,” referring to Alex’s relationship with Jo Wilson (Camilla Luddington).
Us Weekly can confirm that Chambers is not set for a return to the show.
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Chambers announced in January 2020 that he would no longer be playing Dr. Alex Karev after 16 seasons on the ABC medical drama.
“There’s no good time to say goodbye to a show and a character that’s defined so much of my life,” the actor said in a statement to Us at the time. “For some time now, however, I have hoped to diversify my acting roles and career choices. And, as I turn 50 and am blessed with my remarkable, supportive wife and five wonderful children, now is that time.”
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His character Alex had left his life in Seattle behind after learning Izzie (Katherine Heigl) used their embryos and was raising their son and daughter in the midwest.
Following the episode, showrunner Krista Vernoff spoke out about the shocking exit.
“It is nearly impossible to say goodbye to Alex Karev,” Vernoff, 51, said in a statement to Us. “That is as true for me and for all of the writers at Grey’s Anatomy as it is for the fans. We have loved writing Alex. And we have loved watching Justin Chambers’ nuanced portrayal of him.”
She continued: “For 16 seasons, 16 years, we have grown up alongside Alex Karev. We have been frustrated by his limitations and we have been inspired by his growth and we have come to love him deeply and to think of him as one of our very best friends. We will miss him terribly. And we will always be grateful for his impact, on our show, on our hearts, on our fans, on the world.”
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While Chambers is not expected to return after his exit, Pompeo will be back after her goodbye airs later this month. Her character, Meredith Grey, is leaving Seattle in the February 23 episode as the actress steps down as a series regular. However, she’ll remain with the long-running medical drama as an executive producer and will appear in the series finale this spring.
Grey’s Anatomy returns to ABC Thursday, February 23, at 9 p.m. ET.
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