Ellen Pompeo on Using Her Voice for New Podcast and the 'Grey's' Star She'd Like to Have On (Exclusive)

'I definitely have an edit button,' the actress and producer tells ET about what she will and won't say on 'Tell Me With Ellen Pompeo.'

Ellen Pompeo is using her voice to inspire others. On Tell Me With Ellen Pompeo, the Grey's Anatomy star and producer sits down with guests for candid conversations on a variety of topics, using the platform to amplify important voices and bringing to light the people and issues important to her and the world.

During the unfiltered chats, Pompeo and her guests, which have included former Grey's co-star Patrick Dempsey, Grown-ish's Yara Shahidi, ER physician/author Michele Harper and organizational psychologist/author Adam Grant, go deep on their motivations, inspirations, how they got to where they are and projects they're working on. Future guests coming up on the podcast include Grey's alum Giacomo Gianniotti, Cindy Crawford, Rachel Lindsay and Los Angeles City Councilmember Nithya Raman, among others. 

"I realize how powerful my voice has the potential to be for young women, specifically, and I feel pretty grateful that I've had such a loyal following for 18 seasons on a show, and at this point in my life I really feel like, 'How do I want to use this platform? What can I do with it? How do I want to use it?'" Pompeo told ET's Nischelle Turner on Friday in an exclusive interview over Zoom to discuss Tell Me.

"There's just so much craziness in the world, so much negativity and I have this amazing seat I'm sitting in of privilege and power and I do feel a responsibility to give back in some way. Give back in a few different ways," she said. "But I've chosen this as one of them to put some positive conversations out there and ideas to young women. I didn't really have a whole lot of mentors in my life coming up, especially in show business or just life in general. Navigating adult life I had to learn a lot of really hard lessons the really hard way and I still learn lessons the hard way, but I thought if young women look up to me so much and follow me -- and social media's not the place to be able to have conversations -- I thought, 'What if I can have conversations that empower women, that help women, that help people in general?' Not just women, help people think about things in a different way. That's using my platform in a positive productive way."

Pompeo has long been outspoken about her career, the highs and lows of being No. 1 on the call sheet on a long-running show like Grey's, and her podcast is just another avenue for her to shed light on matters close to her heart with the people who are doing the work. Pompeo acknowledges that her candidness sometimes gets her into dicey waters. But that hasn't stopped her from speaking her mind on the podcast.

"Well, I definitely have an edit button and I'm very, very, very careful," the 51-year-old actress said, admitting she's "already gotten into some trouble" with some of the things she's discussed on the podcast. "But the truth is, the world we live in, people want to find a soundbite and there isn't too much I can do if that's the way the world is. My goal is always to try to be authentic, right? This thing called fame, whatever it is, is super weird, it's a weird thing to have people know my name and for my kids to go, 'Mommy, why does everybody know you?' I think it can really mess with your head and one way I used to navigate fame is to just try to be real. And stay real and go to the grocery store and have normal conversations."

"I'm terrified, to be honest, when I speak. I'm always afraid that I'm going to say something that someone might be able to take a piece out of context and plaster it somewhere and make me sound like someone who I'm not," Pompeo expressed. "And I can't really control that. All I can really do is ask that people listen to the conversations and if you hear the conversations and if you spend any time looking at anything I put out, I generally try to be super positive and lead with love all the time."

With Grey's vets Dempsey and Gianniotti swinging by as guests on Tell Me, Pompeo is keeping the door open for other familiar faces to come on. Pompeo revealed during the interview that she just recorded an upcoming episode with Eric Dane.

"I had Eric Dane yesterday [Thursday]. He is on Euphoria now. I love him on Euphoria," she shared. "We had a fun conversation. Eric and I are very close. We hang out all the time. Then Giacomo Gianniotti was on another episode. I had our local city councilwoman Nithya Raman on to talk about local politics here in Hollywood and what she was struggling with."

But there is one Grey's alum she's hoping to bring on in the near future: Kate Walsh, whose first episode back is this Thursday. "We were trying... Kate Walsh lives in Australia now, so the timing's been a little challenging. But yeah, I love my Grey's family and there will always be people from Grey's on the podcast."

As for when the medical drama, with its 18th season off and running, may be coming to an end, the actress was diplomatic when asked if there was ever a situation where Grey's could continue on without Meredith Grey. 

"That is not for me to decide. It is not my show in that way. That would be someone else's decision entirely," Pompeo said, adding that she and creator Shonda Rhimes "definitely talk about it, for sure."

Her new Cadence13 podcast, Tell Me With Ellen Pompeo, is available wherever you get your podcasts. New episodes are released Wednesdays. For more, watch below.

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