Kate Walsh — who made her Grey’s Anatomy debut as Dr Addison Montgomery in the show’s Season 1 finale in 2005, and later was the star of spinoff Private Practice — will return to the medical drama for a multi-episode arc in its upcoming 18th season.
Representatives from ABC confirmed Walsh’s return but did not give specifics about Addison’s storyline.
Walsh has said in the past that she’d be happy to return to the show. Addison went from a recurring character to a series regular, and after the third season of Grey’s Anatomy, Shonda Rhimes, the show’s creator, sent Addison to Los Angeles, where Walsh starred on Private Practice.
READ MORE: Where is Kate Walsh and what is she doing now?
Addison shares a history with the characters who have been on Grey’s from the start, Meredith (Ellen Pompeo), her formal rival for Derek Shepherd’s affections; Richard (James Pickens Jr.) and Miranda (Chandra Wilson), all of whom will be returning for Season 18. Caterina Scorsone’s Amelia is Addison’s former sister-in-law, and Scorsone also starred in Private Practice.
The spinoff ran for six seasons on ABC, and Addison appeared on “Grey’s” during crossover events between the shows.
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Grey’s Anatomy returns to the U.S. on September 30. The show shed several main characters last season, with both Giacomo Gianniotti and Jesse Williams leaving the show.
But the storytelling device of Season 17, with Meredith’s scenes mostly taking place on a beach as she hovered between life and death due to COVID-19, allowed a number of dead characters — Derek (Patrick Dempsey), her husband; her friend George (T.R. Knight); and her sister Lexie (Chyler Leigh) — to be featured on the show.
READ MORE: Sandra Oh reflects on ‘traumatic’ rise to fame after being cast in Grey’s Anatomy
For the upcoming season, ABC confirmed that Kate Burton, who played Meredith’s mother Ellis, will be featured in multiple episodes, and that Peter Gallagher will play Dr. Alan Hamilton, a doctor who knew Ellis. The mystery deepens!