EXCLUSIVE: In April 2021, ABC’s first-responders drama Station 19 aired an episode hailed as probably the most robust reflections of George Floyd’s homicide on tv. It used to be written by way of govt manufacturer/showrunner Krista Vernoff, with contributions from the display’s writing and enhance body of workers in addition to the forged.
Greater than a yr later, an incident involving the depiction of racism at the web page has left the writing workforce of the Gray’s Anatomy derivative reeling. In step with assets, it needed to do with a author’s fresh draft of an overview for an upcoming Season 6 episode that integrated a large number of makes use of of a racial slur by way of a racist persona.
I listen the description used to be met with surprise and disbelief when shared with the writers room, and tensions grew to some extent the place the digital room has been placed on pause. Vernoff on Monday despatched an e mail to the body of workers, a replica of which used to be received by way of Cut-off date, wherein she spoke of “fresh hurt and systemic problems” that will be addressed in a Zoom assembly Tuesday. It used to be to be attended by way of Jones, an organizational psychology guide staff that specialize in fostering range and inclusion in paintings environments and management.
“We will be able to now not be assembly creatively nor will have to we e mail as a bunch till then,” Vernoff wrote in her Monday e mail to the body of workers pronouncing the Tuesday assembly. “We will be able to now not continue with trade as same old till the hot hurt and systemic problems were addressed and therapeutic has begun. If you’re on script or define please paintings by yourself for the instant.”
The assembly used to be held Tuesday, and conversation a number of the writers at the display has resumed since, assets inform Cut-off date. The display’s digital writers room has now not been reconvened, alternatively, whilst the placement is being evaluated and safeguards are being installed position.
Shonda Rhimes’ Shondaland is in the back of Gray’s Anatomy and Station 19. The corporate, which has damaged a large number of limitations for on- and off-screen illustration over the last 20 years, briefly intervened after the incident took place, assets mentioned.
“As an organization, it’s in our DNA to continuously overview the tradition of our productions and to briefly make adjustments if and when they aren’t residing as much as the Shondaland values,” the corporate mentioned in a commentary to Cut-off date. “A contemporary scenario within the writers’ room at Station 19 supplied us with alternatives to reimagine the construction of management within the identify of making a extra respectful and inclusive place of job.”
ABC and ABC Signature, the studio which produces Station 19, declined remark.
It’s unclear what precisely the reimagined management construction at the display can be. Since Vernoff runs each Gray’s Anatomy and Station 19, her No. 2 and most sensible lieutenant on Station 19 is Kiley Donovan. I listen the adjustments potentiality would come with bringing in a brand new head author who’s an individual of colour, with Donovan, who has labored on each Gray’s Anatomy and Station 19 for the previous 3 years, most likely shifting to every other Shondaland sequence.
Additionally unclear is the destiny of the script that sparked the talk. The offensive portion obviously may not be used.
Manufacturing on Station 19‘s upcoming 6th season began July 28. It’s slated to premiere October 6.
Station 19, ABC’s No. 2 scripted sequence in the back of Gray’s Anatomy, follows a bunch of heroic Seattle firefighters as they put their lives and hearts at the line. It stars Jaina Lee Ortiz, Jason George, Boris Kodjoe, Gray Damon, Barrett Doss, Jay Hayden, Danielle Savre, Stefania Spampinato and Carlos Miranda.
The sequence used to be created by way of Stacy McKee. Rhimes and Betsy Beers additionally function govt manufacturers along Vernoff. Station 19 is produced by way of ABC Signature, part of Disney Tv Studios.