Q&A With Kevin McKidd of 'Grey’s Anatomy'
Actor drops hints about Season 9 and how the plane crash affects Seattle Grace
By Lie Shia Ong
Last season, “Grey’s Anatomy” ended in quite an emotional way. After a plane crash that killed one of their own (spoiler alert: It was Lexie who died), Derek, Meredith, Cristina, Mark and Arizona are fighting for survival as they wait to be rescued.
When Season 9 of the show premieres this Thursday, expect to shed some more tears as the doctors deal with this latest tragedy.
MSN TV spoke with Kevin McKidd, Dr. Owen Hunt, about what’s ahead this season and how things have changed at Seattle Grace.
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MSN TV: In true “Grey’s Anatomy” fashion, Shonda Rhimes left fans with a cliffhanger last season with a plane crash. What can you tell us about the Season 9 premiere this Thursday?
Kevin McKidd: It’s a big deal. It picks up a few months after the crash and it shows where everybody is at now, how far they’ve come in their journey and how this terrible event has affected their lives. The second episode actually flashes back to the days after the crash at the crash site. … So it’s a very intense few episodes. Pretty dark. … It gets pretty intense. It’s a real roller-coaster ride during the two episodes.
Now your character, Owen, isn’t just dealing with the plane crash and running the hospital, but he also just fired Teddy (Kim Raver) and is coping with the fact Cristina (Sandra Oh) might be leaving. Will we see some resolution in their relationship?
I hope so. It’s hard to say. I really hope so. I always believed Cristina and Owen are kind of destined to be together even though on paper they sort of don’t add up. There’s so much between them. There’s so much fire between them. I think they’re kind of meant for each other. I think the path back is going to be a long one. If there is a path back, it’s going to take a while for them to get over … all the baggage that they have to work through. Sometimes their communication skills aren’t the best. So it’s going to be hard, but I think it’s going to be worthwhile, hopefully.
Your fans sent in some questions on Twitter and Facebook they wanted me to ask you. Hannah wants to know if Owen is going to win Cristina back, or will she try to win him back?
I think initially it’s definitely going to be Owen. Cristina has just been through a traumatic event, and she wants to return to Owen and have him be there for her, but how ready she is or able she is to receive that from him, especially after what happened last year, it’s difficult. It’s difficult for them, and that hurts Owen too. Sometimes people shut down when they try and try and try with someone and they don’t reciprocate it. So it’s a back and forth, push and pull between Cristina and Owen.
Milee wants to know: Will the baby issue be resolved at all? Is there any hope of Cristina ever wanting a baby?
I don’t know about that one. ... I hope they can move past it and try to make peace.
Several characters won’t be returning to the show this season, including Teddy, who you fired and, sadly, Lexie, who died in the plane crash at the end of last season, and Mark (Eric Dane) will also be leaving the show after the first few episodes this season. How do you think this will affect the dynamic of the show?
I think it affects the show emotionally because you suddenly feel the absence of all these great characters. What’s exciting is that it makes way for a whole bunch of new interns and doctors who are becoming attending [doctors]. There’s a whole rebirth to the stories, but those characters are very much missed, I think, not just off set, but the on-screen characters mourn the loss of the people who have gone. … So yeah, it’s definitely emotional.
You’ve actually directed several episodes of “Grey’s Anatomy.” Any plans to do so this season?
Yeah. I just completed an episode about a week and a half ago, and I hope to do even more this season. I’m really enjoying the directing. It’s a great, great challenge and one I feel very blessed to get the opportunity to do — not everyone gets this opportunity. I’m really learning how to do it and how to do it well. “Grey’s” is such a great training ground because there’s very talented people and passionate people to work for. I’m working with some of the best. I’m enjoying my time as a director very much.
Are there any special episodes, like the musical one planned for this season, that you know of?
I haven’t heard about those big-event episodes yet. I’m sure there will be, but they usually come later in the season, so you’ll have to keep your ears peeled for that.
Shonda Rhimes has said this season will be one of romance, and I’m guessing it’s also going to be one of bromance with Owen and the rest of the guys. What’s ahead for them?
I think Owen and Derek especially do tend to bond, and they’re bonding more and more. Derek is going through a challenging time because of the aftermath of what happened to him during the crash. … He and Owen have definitely become closer during this period.
Shelley wants to know, how is McDreamy (Patrick Dempsey) on set?
Patrick is just Patrick. He’s hilarious. He’s a force of nature. There’s never a dull moment with Patrick around …
During the season premiere, fans can follow along with you as you live tweet along with the show?
Yes, during the 9 p.m. PT broadcast. I find it quite weird that I’ll be tweeting while watching the show. I think I’ll find it hard to concentrate!
Note: You can follow along @TheRealKMcKidd
Any last message you have for your fans?
I think people who are Cristina and Owen fans should try to keep the faith. I know it’s hard. There’s pretty dark times ahead and it’s been dark for them… They should keep the faith because I am.
The Season 9 premiere of “Grey’s Anatomy” airs Thursday, Sept. 27, at 9 p.m. ET/PT on ABC.