By Tim Kenneally
Cristina Yang has left Seattle Grace. Or, rather, she will, after the upcoming season of “Grey’s Anatomy” wraps up.
Sandra Oh, who plays Yang on the series, will leave the hit ABC medical drama at the end of the season premiering Sept. 26.
Oh said that her decision to leave was “emotional and deeply creative,” noting that she’s “both sad and excited” to see what will happen to Yang over the next season.
“It’s been a great privilege to play the character of Cristina Yang on ‘GA’ and I am both sad and excited to see where this, her final season will take her. It was an emotional and deeply creative decision for me and I feel fully supported by ['Grey's' creator] Shonda [Rhimes] and the writers,” Oh said in a statement.
“It’s so rare in an actor’s life to be able to explore and grow a character so fully, so completely. I am profoundly grateful to everyone at ‘GA’ for the opportunity. I’m excited to celebrate and cherish every moment of my final season on ‘GA’ with the fans who have made it all possible.”
Rhimes, who called the actress’ portrayal of Yang “brilliant” and “nuanced,” added that Oh’s character will receive “the exit she deserves.”
“Over the past ten seasons, I have been made better by Sandra’s trust, faith and friendship and I can’t quantify how grateful I am for her collaboration on a character we both love so deeply. This year is going to be bittersweet for us — we’re both going to savor every moment of Cristina Yang and then we’re going to give her the exit she deserves. And when Sandra walks out of my door, ‘Grey’s Anatomy’ will be once again be forever changed.”
A spokesperson for ABC added, “It’s our intention to have ‘Grey’s’ on the air for many years to come, with as many of the original cast as possible.”